Endodontics is the branch of dentistry that deals with the diagnosis and treatment of diseases of the pulp and the tissues that surround them.
When pulpal tissue is compromised and its vitality threatened or destroyed, some form of endodontic treatment is necessary to preserve teeth that might otherwise be extracted.
When the pulp is injured the potential for complications, especially infections and abscesses, are substantial. When problems requiring endodontic treatment are ignored, it can lead not only to further dental problems and tooth loss, but may lead to systemic ramifications as well.
The endodontically aware clinician can offer the client the option of retaining a tooth with pulp damage for both function and esthetics. Most animals function well with the loss of one or more teeth, but many owners are committed to optimum care and even have true esthetic concerns about their pets; for these owners, endodontics may be an unexpected, but appreciated, alternative.
Animals trained for special duties (ex. military, police, tracking, retrieving and protection) often require a sound, functional, complete dentition. For these animals, avoidance of tooth loss can be crucial.