Transformative Endodontic Technology, Elevating the Standard of Clean
James C. Douthitt, DDS, MS
Honestly, how often in the course of your career do you find a technology that improves the way that you approach your day-one that enhances how you practice as well as the experience of both the referring dentist and the patient? As an endodontist, I face the daily challenge of 3-dimensionally cleaning the most complex of root canal systems and providing my referring dentists' patients with the most comfortable results possible.
The contemporary practice of endodontics has seen the introduction of an overwhelming number of nickel-titanium rotary instruments intended to create better access for canal irrigants and medicaments to reach the anatomical intricacies of teeth that are in need of root canal therapy. Whether the pulpal tissue contained in these canals is acutely inflamed or totally necrotic and infected with bacteria, the goal is the same-to remove it. As members of a specialty dedicated to saving teeth whenever possible, endodontists produce excellent clinical outcomes; however, opportunities for improvement remain, inclu-ding eliminating the need for multiple patient visits for medicament changes, addressing postoperative flare-ups, re-treating failures due to inadequate cleaning, and preventing fractures from overpreparation.
The introduction of the GentleWave® Procedure to my practice has given me increased confidence in the efficacy of the treatments that I am providing. From the outset, I began to see anatomical complexities more often than I had with standard cleaning and shaping techniques. There is no question that the visualization provided when obturating the most complex of canal anatomies is impressive, but the more important and lasting benefit is the associated reduction in our patients' postoperative symptoms. Another advantage is the fact that the canal preparation sizes are reduced, which results in the removal of less pericervical dentin, increasing resistance to fracture.
As a practice that actively encourages patients to return for a posttreatment healing assessment, we are observing the complete resolution of large, periradicular radiolucencies following single-visit treatments with the GentleWave Procedure. In addition, patients are appreciative of our efforts to integrate technology that offers them the convenience of a single-visit procedure. Jobs, travel, and phobias are real considerations, and when we reduce patients' time in our office, case acceptance and patient satisfaction increase.
So, how has the introduction of the GentleWave Procedure changed the way that I approach my day? I am more confident than ever in my ability to systematically and predictably clean and disinfect the canal system. In turn, patients have the assurance that I am utilizing technology that will quickly and comfortably resolve acute as well as chronic pulpal and periradicular pathoses in only one visit. With this technology, I am closer than ever to the goal of returning to my referring dentist a patient who has received the best possible endodontic treatment, including a fully cleaned tooth that has more dentin and an increased life span.
• The GentleWave Procedure provides exceptional efficacy, effectively removing infected tissue, bacteria, and biofilm from even the most complex anatomies.
• The GentleWave Procedure allows for minimal instrumentation of the canals, offering patients a less invasive approach to root canal treatment.
• The GentleWave Procedure is efficient and can reduce the number of visits needed from two to one, offering convenience for the patient and the referring dentist.