Too many people think of dentists only as the people who clean our teeth, urge us to brush and floss, and come after our cavities. Dentistry encompasses a wide range of specialties. For instance, have you ever wondered about the difference between endodontist vs. dentist?

Endodontists are dentists who extend their education for several years to specialize in the practice of saving your teeth. Only about three percent of dentists gain the endodontist designation, according to the American Association of Endodontists.

Understanding the difference between endodontist vs. dentist can make you a better, more informed patient in addressing your dental health needs. 

Decoding the Dental Profession

Endodontists make up one category of a diverse set of professionals who help keep your teeth and gums healthy. The profession offers several specializations.

Luckily, you don’t have to keep track of the differences yourself. Your general dentist will recommend when it’s time to see a specialist. The dental field boasts seven specialty providers, including: 

  • General dentist
  • Pediatric dentist
  • Orthodontist
  • Periodontist
  • Endodontist
  • Oral Surgeon
  • Prosthodontist

Endodontists are among the busiest of dental specialists. More than 15 million root canals, one of the primary procedures performed by an endodontist, are performed annually. 

Difference Between Endodontist vs. Dentist

Both endodontists and dentists are highly skilled professionals who take care of your dental health. The two groups both complete a traditional dental school curriculum of four years.

Endodontists choose to go on for two additional years to build a more finely tuned set of skills aimed at more advanced problems — helping save a decaying or diseased tooth, usually through root canals.

During a root canal, the endodontist will extract inflamed or infected tissue inside the tooth that is causing significant pain or discomfort.

To ensure the infection doesn’t return, the endodontist fills and seals the canal. You may also be a candidate for a crown over the top of the tooth.

The difference between endodontist vs. dentist is more than academic. In fact, it was the subject of a federal appeals court case in 2016 concerning whether an Ohio dentist was correctly identifying himself as an endodontist

A Dentist or an Endodontist

Dentists also perform root canals. In fact, general dentists perform about 70 percent of root canals and 68 percent of all endodontic procedures annually in the United States, according to the Association of Endodontists.

General dentists such as those at South High Dental can help you determine when you should consider seeing a root canal specialist. That typically happens in the case of a complication — an injured tooth or other difficulties. 

No matter which professional assists you, the goal remains the same: To provide high-quality and affordable care to allow you to live pain-free.  

How We Can Help

Understanding the difference between an endodontist vs. a dentist will help as you are seeking the right professional help for your situation. At South High Dental, we employ a team of professionals with more than 30 years of experience. We provide a variety of general dentistry services to deliver what our patients need to keep their dental health in excellent condition. These include everyday general dentistry services as well as orthodontics to align your teeth and jaw and emergency dental services. We focus all of our services to ensuring that you are happy with your smile. Our services include:

  • Cavity filling
  • Periodontal treatment
  • Professional teeth whitening
  • Fluoride treatments

Isn’t it time that you were happy with your smile again? At South High Dental, we’re committed to making that a wish a viable possibility in the near future. Please fill out our online form or contact us at 614.363.2462 for an appointment today to learn more.