shirley root canal for kids

When a tooth is infected, this could cause your child discomfort and even risk the premature loss of the tooth! A filling may not be enough, but we can still help with a conservative root canal alternative known as a pulpotomy. In today’s blog, your Shirley, NY, pediatric dentist and orthodontist talks about our approach to treating infected or severely decayed teeth in little smiles.

The Causes and Dangers of an Infected Tooth

A tooth becomes infected when harmful oral bacteria reach the pulp, the nerve center in every tooth. This controls the movement of blood and nutrients to and from the tooth. The infection could be brought on by untreated cavities, teeth grinding, or even a cracked or chipped tooth. When the infection develops, you could experience painful symptoms like sensitivity, toothaches, pain when you bite down or eat, swelling, headaches and jaw pain, or a discharge from the tooth. Without treatment, this could kill the tooth and allow infection to reach other parts of the smile, causing worsening symptoms and even tooth loss! For children, losing teeth prematurely is a factor for misalignment later in life.

The Pulpotomy

To save the tooth and bring relief from discomfort, we may recommend a pulpotomy. We will take digital x-rays to identify the position and assess the severity of the infection. But first, we want to make sure your child is calm and comfortable throughout the process, so we will administer a local anesthetic and dental sedation. Once your little one enters a calm and relaxed state, we will then open the tooth to remove the infected portions of the inner tissues. We then add a special restorative material to the interior, and cap the tooth with a dental crown. The crown protects the tooth and when possible, we can use materials that offer a lifelike appearance.

Preventing Future Infected Teeth

To help lower the risk of similar issues in the future, be sure your child brushes in the morning and at night with a fluoride toothpaste, and that he or she flosses every evening. Try to limit their exposure to sugary foods and drinks, and bring them to the office every six months for a checkup and cleaning too. Taking care of the teeth can help prevent major problems with the smile, and preserve it as well. If you have any questions about treating your smile, or about the pulpotomy itself, then contact our team today to learn more.

Be Sure to Visit Your Shirley, NY, Orthodontist and Pediatric Dentist

Our team is eager to help protect your child’s smile. To learn more about how we help safeguard smiles with an infection or abscess, then contact Shirley Orthodontics and Pediatric Dentistry in Shirley, NY, by calling (631) 399-1600.