Of all the Ellicott City, Maryland, root canal therapy treatments, pulpotomies may be the least well-known. If you’ve recently learned that you’re going to need a pulpotomy, you’re probably wondering what to expect from the procedure and what the pulpotomy recovery time looks like.
This procedure tends to be less commonly known because it’s mainly performed on children who still have their primary teeth. But there are instances in which a pulpotomy can be a better option than a traditional root canal, even for adults.
Dr. Lina Jarboe and Dr. Burton Waxman of Access Endodontics offer pulpotomies to those patients who are good candidates for receiving this treatment. Our endodontists aim to make your procedure as smooth and painless as possible. If you’d like to learn more, contact your dentist or give us a call at 410.304.7226 today.
What is a Pulpotomy?
The pulpotomy procedure is similar to a traditional root canal in that it is designed to treat an infected tooth by targeting the problematic dental pulp. The only difference is that, in a pulpotomy, only the dental pulp inside the visible part of the tooth (the crown) is removed. This is done to preserve more of the natural tooth and protect the tooth root.
Signs of a Tooth Infection
Often, people are unaware that a painful tooth can be saved. Many people believe that the only solution for the tooth pain is an extraction. However, if you have any of the following signs, an Endodontist may be able to correct the problem. Signs that you may need a root canal or pulpotomy include:
- Severe, consistent toothache
- Jaw, neck, and/or ear pain
- Painful biting and chewing
- Increased sensitivity to hot and cold
- Swelling in the face, neck, or cheek
- Bad breath (halitosis)
An infected tooth can’t always be treated with a pulpotomy, which is why you’ll need to speak with your dentist first in order to determine which type of treatment is best for you.
The pulpotomy procedure requires your endodontist to drill into your inner tooth in order to access the infected dental pulp. You’ll receive a local anesthetic to numb the area and ensure your comfort.
Your endodontist will then remove any decay and then go into the inner tooth to remove the layer of pulp inside the crown, leaving the pulp inside the tooth root intact (provided it’s healthy).
Once complete, your endodontist will apply medication to the remaining dental pulp, fill in the area with dental cement, and seal the tooth. You’ll likely receive a dental crown in order to protect the tooth from further damage or infection. After that, you can begin your pulpotomy recovery.
Pulpotomy Recovery Time
The full pulpotomy procedure is relatively short, only taking around 30 to 45 minutes to complete. It’s also not particularly uncomfortable. You can typically handle the swelling and tenderness fairly easily with the help of some over-the-counter pain relievers.
In all, the healing time of pulpotomy treatment should only be about 24 to 48 hours, and you’ll be able to resume regular activities almost immediately.
You’ll want to be gentle at first after a pulpotomy, avoiding hard foods and regularly rinsing with salt water to reduce inflammation and prevent infection. This information and more instructions that can help to improve your pulpotomy healing time will be detailed to you by your endodontist after your procedure.
Make sure to follow your instructions closely, and you’ll recover quickly after this treatment.
Pulpotomy Treatment from Access Endodontics
Pulpotomies can save your natural teeth and prevent the need for more complicated and uncomfortable procedures. If you’d like to learn more about this procedure, contact your dentist or reach out to the dedicated professionals at Access Endodontics today by calling 410.304.7226.