It used to be that if your mouth contained a damaged tooth, dental experts attempted to save your tooth by drastic means. Typically, sensory testing showed that if your tooth hurt and showed sensitivity to hot or cold food and drinks, the only remedy was pulling the tooth or getting a root canal. However, today you can get vital pulp therapy (VPT) to save a tooth.
How Vital Pulp Therapy Can Save Your Damaged Tooth
Evolving dental advances found pulp sensory supply is only one of several factors that show your tooth’s health. If plaque eats its way through your tooth’s hard surface, you develop a cavity. Leaving it untreated just invites more plaque to burrow in.
Some folks have softer teeth than others. Other folks don’t realize that you should perform brushing and flossing throughout the day. An accident may cause trauma to a tooth and damage it. Regardless, most people develop one or more cavities. If your dentist locates a cavity so deep that the pulp is dying from bacteria, it’s possible to perform a VPT treatment. This procedure removes that decayed pulp from your tooth’s crown. Once removed, your dentist checks for an abscess or swelling. If there’s no swelling or abscess, your dentist packs the crown of your tooth with a medicated material.
Initially, only children got this treatment. Now, mature adult teeth often qualify for this treatment. It’s less invasive than a root canal and keeps the tooth intact. Our experts in endodontics at Lovett Dental Webster will carefully examine your tooth to help you decide if this treatment is right for you.
Vital Pulp Therapy Specialists
When looking for specialists in endodontics, residents know Lovett Dental Webster has highly trained experts. Here are a few things your dental specialist reviews to determine if VPT is the best choice for your tooth:
- Evidence your tooth contains vital pulp
- Any history of lingering, severe pain in the tooth
- Imaging results show evidence part of your tooth remains healthy
- A permanent crown on your tooth
- Extensive restoration work is done on the tooth
- Amount of blood supply to your tooth
Vital Pulp Therapy Provides Additional Benefits
If bacteria get into the inner part, your tooth often needs a root canal. Underneath your tooth’s enamel and dentin, soft spongy pulp containing blood vessels surround the nerve and provide the last layer of protection inside your tooth. Bacteria enjoy munching on this sponge-like pulp and start to multiply. Soon, there’s no longer room for expanding bacteria as it devours your protective pulp. With nowhere to go, bacteria-filled dead tissue starts pressing against your exposed nerve. Major unrelenting pain quickly takes over.
If the bacteria continues to spread, eventually, a root canal is necessary to save your tooth. However, removing the remaining pulp and one or more nerves from your tooth leaves little substance for support. Only your tooth’s fragile shell remains. Unless you get a crown or cap, you risk cracking that shell when using it to chew. Once protected with a crown or cap, your tooth remains vulnerable to exuberant chewing. Scientists agree that an intact tooth withstands pressure from chewing far better than a tooth with root canal treatment does.
Here at Lovett Dental Webster, we believe in multidisciplinary dentistry. Our dental specialists are the best at what they do. You’ll find specialty care available from experts providing services in:
- Pediatric dentistry
- Maxillofacial surgery
Your tooth is too important to your overall health to risk losing. Please visit Lovett Dental Webster, or call us at 832-932-5584 now for an evaluation and exam today.