When your child has a deep cavity, the bacteria which caused the decay may have penetrated into the nerve (pulp) of the tooth. In such cases, a pulpotomy is recommended to save the tooth. A pulpotomy of a baby tooth is similar to but not as complex as a root canal treatment of an adult tooth. The procedure is usually completed at the same visit as the filling. The procedure prevents unneccessary loss of the tooth. Your child's baby teeth are important for eating, speech and for guiding the permanent teeth into position. The baby teeth should whenever possible remain in your child's mouth until they are lost naturally. This may be as old as age 10 or 12 for the back molar teeth. We may recommend a pulpotomy for your child when they still have many years before the baby tooth will be lost and when the decay is very deep.
A pulpotomy removes the infected part of the nerve (pulp) of a tooth to prevent pain and infection. A medicated filling material is placed in the nerve space and a cap is then used to restore your child's tooth.
Following a pulpotomy, it is important to maintain regular dental care, excellent oral hygiene, and avoidance of sweet sticky snacks or candies. Your child should then never again have cavities large enough to require another pulpotomy. Please be sure to bring your child in for check-ups every six months. Drs Glowinsky and Harding are very experienced in educating parents and children on healthy habits which will help maintain your childs teeth.