Endodontic FAQ

What is endodontics?

Endodontics is a branch of dentistry recognized by the American Dental Association involving treatment of the pulp (root canal) and surrounding tissues of the tooth. When you look at your tooth in the mirror, what you see is the crown. The rest of the tooth, the portion hidden beneath the gum line, is called the root. Though the outer portion of the root is a hard tissue called dentin, the inside channel or “root canal” contains a pulp of soft tissue, blood vessels and nerves. Bacteria that are introduced into the pulp as a result of tooth decay, periodontal disease, tooth fracture or other problems, can severely damage the pulp. When that happens, an endodontic specialist removes the diseased pulp to save the tooth and prevent further infection and inflammation. After successful endodontic treatment, the tooth continues to perform normally.

I’m worried about x-rays. Should I be?

It is important to limit exposure to radiation and at Victor Endodontics, PLLC we are as concerned about your health as you are.  While x-rays will be necessary during your endodontics treatment, we use an advanced non-film computerized system, called digital radiography, that produces radiation levels up to 90 percent lower than those of already low dose conventional dental x-ray machinery. The amount of information gathered through these limited exposures produces invaluable information allowing us to provide the safest and highest quality treatments.  The digital images can be optimized, archived, printed and sent to dentists via e-mail or CD-ROM.

What about infection?

At Victor Endodontics, PLLC, we take infection control very seriously.  We adhere to the most rigorous standards of infection control advocated by OSHA, the Centers for Disease Control and the American Dental Association. We utilize autoclave sterilization and barrier techniques to address any risk of infection.  We are proud to adhere to the strictest standards.

What happens after treatment?

When your root canal therapy has been completed, a record of your treatment will be sent to your restorative dentist. We will coordinate with you and your dentist one each case to discuss what, if any, further treatment is needed to restore and maintain the tooth.  It is rare for endodontic patients to experience complications after routine endodontic treatment or microsurgery. If a problem does occur, however, we are available at all times to respond.  If you have been recently treated at Victor Endodontics, PLLC, and it is after hours, Dr. Shaughnessy can be reached on an emergency number at (585) 502-8765.

What new technologies are being used?

Operating Microscopes:

In addition to digital radiography, we utilize special operating microscopes. Magnification and fiber optic illumination are helpful in aiding the doctor to see tiny details inside your tooth. Also, a tiny video camera on the operating microscope can record images of your tooth to further document the doctor’s findings.