Pediatric dentistry is an area of dentistry that focuses on the oral health of children. Starting good dental hygiene habits early in life is important. As the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states, more than 50% of children under the age of nine have had at least one cavity in their baby teeth, and…
Preparing Your Child for a Baby Root Canal
A baby root canal is performed to save a baby tooth with a compromised pulp chamber. It often brings an end to any pain the child is dealing with. You might find yourself wondering why pediatric dentists are concerned with saving baby teeth since they will eventually fall out. The simple answer to that question is that baby teeth play an important role in holding space for permanent teeth. A baby tooth falling out prematurely can lead to teeth alignment issues and other problems when the child's permanent teeth erupt.
Getting your child ready for a baby root canal
Root canals have a bad reputation as some scary procedure, but that is just a myth. Local anesthetics are administered prior to the treatment, so the child will not feel pain as the dentist works on their tooth. They only feel vibrations and pressure from the dentist working.
Root canal therapy is a safe treatment, and the excruciating toothaches caused by oral problems that require a root canal can leave a child in agony. Most patients feel a lot better after a root canal than they did when they walked into the clinic. Here are some simple things parents can do to prepare their child for a root canal:
- Find a pediatric dentist who has experience performing root canals on children
- Make sure the child brushes before heading to the dentist
- Avoid snacking on the way to the dentist
- Talk to the child about any fears they have and inform the dentist
What to expect during the procedure
Performing a baby root canal is a lot like working on permanent teeth. A pediatric dentist might use tools that are less intimidating when working with children so as to alleviate any fears they have. The dentist will inject the area around the damaged tooth with a local anesthetic. If the child has a fear of needles, a topical anesthetic might be used prior to the injection so the child barely feels anything.
The dentist will then use a dental drill to make a hole into the tooth's pulp chamber where the tooth's nerve and blood vessels are housed. Files of varying sizes are used to clean out the pulp chamber. The area is disinfected with medication and the tooth is sealed back up. Depending on how damaged the tooth is and its location, the dentist might rebuild it with a composite resin or cover it with a crown.
By the time the procedure is over, the child should no longer have excruciating toothaches. They might experience minor discomfort for a few days after the treatment while the tooth heals. Baby root canals are typically performed to save teeth that have been severely damaged or infected. It helps to prevent the need for an extraction.
Get your child the treatment they need
Call our Richmond clinic if your child has an infected or badly damaged tooth. Our pediatric dentist might be able to save the tooth and end your child's ordeal with a baby root canal procedure.
Check out what others are saying about our dental services on Yelp: Pediatric Dentist in Richmond, TX.
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