Welcome to Ivanhoe Specialist Endodontics, a specialist dental practice serving Melbourne, Australia.
What Do We Do?
What Do “Endodontic” and “Endodontist” Mean?
In Greek, “endo-” means inside and “odont-” means tooth so “endodontics” is everything to do with the inside of teeth. Mostly that means cleaning infection out of the hollow space inside teeth. An “endodontist” is just someone who only does “endodontics” as their job.
We Help People Save Infected Teeth.
We are a specialist endodontic practice which helps dental patients save their infected teeth. Most people regard having a painful or infected tooth as a serious problem and wish to try to save the tooth if at all possible. Infected teeth never get better by themselves and the disease just gets worse and more difficult to treat over time. With skillful endodontic (root filling) treatment, most infected teeth can be saved and afterwards the tooth goes back to feeling normal again. We think this is really great and gain much job satisfaction when we make a tooth become healthy again. Our specialist endodontists are all qualified dentists of course. But they are further qualified than general dentists after doing an additional full time university masters or equivalent postgraduate degree over several years. This improves their endodontic treatment to a specialist standard. They also use specialist equipment not usually available in general practices which improve treatment greatly. The most important of these is an operating microscope with a tiny tool set so they can see right down the middle of your tooth and fix microscopic problems. It really is microsurgery. And root canal treatment is all we do at work, so we have loads of experience as well as the extra training and equipment.
We Help People Treat Cracked Teeth
Saving infected teeth is not all we do. Ever heard the phrase “prevention is better than cure”? If referral is made early enough, we may be able to save the life of the tooth before it dies by removing the cause of the problem. Many teeth with fillings may become extremely temperature sensitive, and with sharp pain on biting. These teeth often have deep cracks which let bacteria inside, irritating the soft living centre (pulp) of the tooth. If the crack is removed and sealed before it goes too deep then the tooth stays alive and a root filling is not usually needed. This prevention is so much better than doing a root filling. Our special microscope can help us see cracks very clearly so the job can be done precisely and well. We believe that this makes all the difference to the outcome. If the crack is found to already reach the soft pulp centre of the tooth then a root filling will be needed anyway and it’s better to get on with it sooner before infection gets into the roots and gives you a tooth ache. We also strengthen the tooth with new fillings and for back teeth with a metal band to prevent it cracking again. This is really important. When all the symptoms have gone and we think the soft centre is healthy then the tooth can be permanently strengthened with a crown or overlay. In some unfortunate cases, if the crack goes right down into the root, then nothing can save the tooth and it has to be removed. But in most cases, the tooth can be saved, often without a root filling. The secret is to get a temperature and bite sensitive tooth treated early on before any cracks go too deep.
We Help People Bleach Stained Teeth
When a tooth dies, the blood inside it stops flowing and deteriorates into brown pigments. These pigments are also responsible for the colour of bruises when blood is spilt into tissue after injury, so you could say the tooth is bruised but the stain does not go away by itself. Also staining root filling materials may have been poorly placed in a tooth and so make it darken too. Both these causes of darkening of a tooth can be reversed with internal bleaching. This is a simple and painless procedure over two or more appointments where bleach is placed inside the tooth until its colour has come good. This is only suitable for dead teeth, but is surprisingly straight forward and does not involve any further damage to the tooth, unlike if a crown or veneer were placed.