What is Dental Pulp?
The pulp is a mass of connective tissue, blood vessels and cells that resides within the center of the tooth, directly beneath the layer of dentin.
Pulpectomy vs. Pulpotomy
If your child’s primary tooth has extensive decay and infection, or has been damaged by trauma, action may be needed to restore the integrity of the tooth and prevent the infection from spreading to surrounding teeth.
Both terms sound like each other, but they’re different procedures. If the decay or trauma is confined to the crown of the tooth, a pulpotomy may be recommended . A pulpotomy is minor and includes the removal of the coronal (crown portion) pulp of the tooth. Pulpotomies are used to treat living teeth with deep cavities. Living teeth are those that continue to receive blood and can feel things like hot and cold.
If the infection involves tissue in both the tooth crown and the tooth root, a pulpectomy may be the best option. A pulpectomy is complete removal of pulp from the crown and roots. The tooth is then filled with material that can be reabsorbed by the body. It’s usually performed on primary teeth (baby teeth) that are no longer vital due to trauma or an infection in the nerve.
How Can You Prevent Pulp Damage?
The best way to prevent pulp damage is to keep your child’s teeth healthy and protected against injury. That involves good oral hygiene practices, regular dental exams and cleanings, and protecting your child’s teeth from trauma using protective custom sportsguards/mouthguards during athletic activities.