As technology improves, there are often questions on to how to best treat our patients who present with significant decay in their teeth. This issue of Dentistry Today focuses on endodontics as a reliable method to help our patients retain their natural dentition.
Often, the cost of treatment to our patients for root canal treatment of an infected tooth and the subsequent restoration is equal to or less than our dental implant therapy. However, when indicated, dental implant therapy is becoming an extremely popular option of restoring form and function.
In this issue, Dr. Stephanie Tilley describes how to do simple maxillary sinus tenting with dental implant placement. Losing teeth can result in some serious dental concerns, especially in the posterior maxilla. Teeth roots act like tent poles holding up a circus tent, but when the poles are removed, the circus tent collapses. This common result often inhibits dental implant placement without more invasive surgical procedures, which are expensive and time consuming. So, when possible, is it better to retain teeth via endodontic therapy or to simply remove the damaged teeth and place dental implants? That is a question that the dental professional needs to consider carefully.
Also in this issue, Drs. Richard Miron, Michael Pikos, and Mark Bishara write about how vitamin D and antioxidant deficiencies in our patients can result in poor prognoses. Restoring edentulous spaces to function and aesthetics is much more than anesthetizing, reflecting, drilling into hard tissue, and placing titanium screws into jawbones. Proper diagnosing and a thorough evaluation of the patient’s general health is just as important as our clinical skills in surgical placement. Conventional root canal therapy is a viable alternative to extraction and implant placement. However, there are times when dental implant therapy may be a better solution. Educating and instructing our patients as to the benefits and risks of treatment should be above “selling” a procedure.