It used to be that when a child had a tooth containing damaged pulp (the living tissue inside the tooth), removal was the only option. Now, pediatric pulp therapy makes it possible to cure infections and save the tooth.
Pulp can be damaged by decay, injury or trauma to a tooth, or an abscess or infection inside the tooth or at the root tip. When this happens, it is necessary to remove the diseased pulp. This can be done a few different ways:
- A pulpotomy is performed when the damaged pulp is contained within the crown portion of the tooth. The affected pulp is removed, the area is disinfected, and restoration is placed (usually a stainless steel crown)
- A pulpectomy—also known as a pediatric root canal—is required when there is damage to the entire pulp, from the crown to the root. The pulp and nerves of the tooth, as well as bacteria and any decay, are carefully removed. The canals are cleaned, and the resulting cavity is sealed off with material that prevents bacteria from re-entering the tooth.
Endodontic therapy for children is highly successful when it comes to saving the tooth and keeping damage from spreading to other teeth. It can be recommended for both baby and permanent teeth and it often lasts for the life of the tooth. Above all, modern root canal therapy can usually be performed with minimal discomfort for your child.
If your child is exhibiting any of the following symptoms, it could a result of damaged pulp:
- Severe toothache
- Increased sensitivity to hot and cold
- An abscess on the gums
- Swelling and/or tenderness in the gums
Our skilled doctors have years of experience identifying endodontic issues and performing pediatric root canals. We will explain your options and support you all the way through, from the initial consultation to helping your child care for their teeth after each appointment. As always, good oral hygiene practices and regular dental visits will then aid in the life of your child’s root canal.
If you have any questions about root canal therapy or wish to schedule a consultation, feel free to contact us at our Norwood office. We proudly serve Norwood, Walpole, and surrounding areas.