An endodontist is a dentist who has specialized in treating and handling dental problems that involve the inside of the tooth. This means the parts of the tooth that includes the tooth pulp, which is made up of nerve tissue and blood vessels.
An endodontist’s specialization is different from those of a general dentist. A general dentist is more involved in problems that happen on the outside of the tooth, which is the enamel. They fix problems by filling cracked enamel or building up the missing parts of a healthy tooth.
A general dentist will usually look at a patient’s tooth to find out if the pulp has been infected. Depending on how severe the problem is and how complex the whole procedure will be to fix the tooth, an endodontist could be called in to provide endodontic treatment. Among the procedures that endodontists perform is a root canal. The endodontist will remove the infected pulp tissue. He will then shape and clean the channel located inside the root. Of course, endodontists are not entirely relegated to root canals, among their other expertise is to implant artificial teeth after an extraction.
An endondontist, like a general dentist, must complete dental school, which takes four years. But to become an endondontist, he must also take an additional two to three years of training or residency in order to further specialize in the procedures involved in endodontics. There is a board certification available in the field of endodontics that is provided by the American Board of Endodontists.