What Makes A Good Endodontist?
When you hear the words “You need a root canal,” you want to make sure it gets taken care of. Your dentist may send you to an Endodontist, or a root canal specialist. A root canal specialist is a dentist who has undergone advanced training in school to specifically learn about root canals and how to perform them effectively and with minimal discomfort. They are experts in saving your natural teeth. But what makes a good Endodontist? Here are some qualities you will want to look for as you search for an Endodontist to perform your root canal.
Great Qualities Your Endodontist Should Have
First of all, you definitely want to seek out a specialist. Although many dentists can do root canals, and some perform more than others, only Endodontists have received specialized training. Most Endodontists are educated for two to three years even beyond dental school, completing what is known as an Endodontic residency. They are true experts in their fields and have limited their practice to exclusively root canals. Endodontics is a continually evolving field, filled with technological advancements. Endodontists keep up with these changes through a commitment to continuing education. Your Endodontist should be a member of their professional organization, the American Association of Endodontists. This indicates your Endodontist is invested in remaining up to date with their education and is benefiting from the expertise their organization provides.
Additionally, your Endodontist should be committed to your comfort. Endodontists are there to help, and a good Endodontist cares about you as a patient first and foremost. This means that if you have a difficult tooth, they will take extra time for the procedure and not rush. If your tooth requires multiple visits to get the best result, they will recommend taking that route. It also means the Endodontist cares about making sure you are entirely numb for the procedure. A good Endodontist will explain the procedure well, answer questions, and listen to your concerns or fears. A really great Endodontist will make themselves available to communicate with after the procedure, and call to check in on you and see how you are recovering.
Endodontists should be up to date with the technological advancements in their field. The breakthroughs we have seen in Endodontics have truly revolutionized root canal treatment over the last three decades. Every day there is new research in root canals, and a great Endodontist is not only familiar with multiple products and new advancements, but also knows which one is best for your particular scenario and why. No two patients are the same, and no two teeth are the same (even in the same patient!) An Endodontist will know which tools to choose to make your treatment effective.
It should go without saying, but is probably worth mentioning, that the best Endodontists have a high level of experience with root canal procedures. General dentists perform only two root canals per week, on average. A highly experienced Endodontist can perform upward of 8-10 root canals a day, and can see up to 36 patients in a given a week. Many Endodontists do over 1000 root canals a year. This kind of experience indicates that your Endodontist has a greater understanding of the complexity associated with root canals, and is familiar with all challenges and their solutions.
Finally, your Endodontist should be excellent at communication – not just with you, as a patient but also with your general dentist. You should feel heard and understood, and well cared for. Your general dentist should also understand what procedure the Endodontist performed and any pertinent information regarding your specific scenario. Collaboration between dental professionals is important and provides for the best care for you, the patient.
As you look for an Endodontist to perform your root canal, if you keep these qualities in mind, you will find a great practitioner who will take great care of you and your tooth.
Article originally appeared at: https://www.americandentalratings.com/
Author: Dr. Meredith Newman Fresno