Can a Root Canal Save My Child’s Tooth?

Your child may have had an accident while riding his or her bike or practicing the balance beam during gymnastics class. Perhaps candy bars are your child’s weakness, and now she has a cavity because of them. If your child is experiencing discomfort in his or her tooth, a root canal indeed could save your child’s tooth.

A children’s root canal, also known as pulp therapy, is recommended when a child has experienced tooth decay or a traumatic injury that affects the nerve of the tooth. In this situation, your child may need a root canal in order to maintain the life of the tooth so that it is not lost early. This is critical because when the back teeth are lost prematurely, this can lead to future issues with the eruption of your child’s permanent teeth. In addition, a baby tooth that is not treated can cause problems with chewing and proper speech. 

A children’s root canal, also known as pulp therapy, is recommended when a child has experienced tooth decay or a traumatic injury that affects the nerve of the tooth.

During a children’s root canal procedure, the child’s pediatric dentist essentially removes the infected pulp from the tooth—the area that contains living tissue and blood vessels. Then, the dentist applies a substance to the area to soothe the nerve and to stop bacteria from growing. Finally, a crown—or a tooth-like cap—is placed on the tooth.

This procedure is called a pulpotomy if the roots of the tooth—the parts of the tooth embedded in the jawbone—are not affected; only the crown of the tooth, or the part of the tooth that is visible in the mouth, is affected. However, sometimes, trauma or decay may be so severe that the roots are affected, too. In this case, the entire pulp may have to be removed and the root canals have to be cleaned out—a process known as a puplectomy.

Signs that your child may need a children’s root canal include:

  • A tooth is mobile or loose for no apparent reason.
  • A tooth is sensitive to heat or cold.
  • The area around a tooth is red or swollen.
  • Your child is experiencing seemingly random pain.

Get in touch with us today to find out whether your child may be experiencing the type of discomfort that warrants a children’s root canal. Solving this problem early on will help your child to feel comfortable as soon as possible as well as maintain a healthy smile as the years go by.