A pulpotomy is the surgical removal of an inflamed pulp chamber in a child’s tooth that has been compromised due to decay, cavities or trauma. In order to prevent or alleviate an abscess or infection, it is necessary to remove the bacteria from the pulp chamber inside the tooth. This is commonly referred to as a “baby tooth root canal.” Because baby teeth are not as strong and hard as adult teeth, and the nerve in the tooth is much closer to the outside, children are more sensitive and susceptible to decay and tooth pain.
The dentist will remove the diseased pulp within the crown of the tooth, and place a special medicated filling that is put into the chamber in an attempt to keep the healthy and unaffected pulp root alive. The filling will help to prevent bacteria growth and infection, and also calm the nerve of the tooth. Finally, a stainless steel or tooth-colored crown is placed on the tooth, which not only strengthens the tooth and minimizes the risk of future fractures, but also protects from food particles and bacteria.
Once the procedure is complete and the child is out of pain, it is imperative to maintain an effective oral hygiene routine at home and visit his/her dental team regularly. The dentist and hygienist will not only monitor the status of the treated tooth, but will work to prevent future decay so the child can avoid additional dental treatments.