FUTURE DIRECTIONS IN ENDODONTICS
Preserving a tooth with root canal treatment (RCT) has a positive impact on the patient’s oral health-related quality of life. However, cross-sectional studies show that technical quality of root fillings is less than optimal. In the future, more dental practitioners need to evaluate case difficulty and decide on whether they want to treat a tooth or refer to a specialist. The concept of minimally invasive treatment has been advocated during cavity preparation, instrumentation, and regenerative procedures. Unfortunately, long-term clinical outcome studies are lacking in this area. Research in pain mechanisms, inflammatory processes, the impact of systemic health on disease progression, and healing mechanisms is scarce. Infection control, antibiotic resistance and new antibacterial treatment regimens are issues to address in the future. We may anticipate increased regulation and administration of dental, including endodontic, services through insurance schemes and government involvement. Improved quality of service provision through a high standard of dental education is the most important investment to shape endodontics in the future. Health authorities and media may then present endodontic treatment as a safe, reliable, and effective option that is performed to benefit patients.