Though less common than other endodontic procedures, pulp capping is an important, tooth-saving treatment. Our dentists in Dallas will use restorative materials to cover exposed dental pulp, and this may help you avoid the need for root canal therapy or extraction. At Lakewood Dental Group, we offer both direct and indirect pulp capping. After assessing the amount of decay or damage to your tooth, Dr. Shaun Sigurdson or Dr. Mihir Patel will determine the most appropriate option. In either case, our conservative techniques will keep you comfortable and relaxed during treatment.
When is pulp capping appropriate?
On the outside, teeth are coated in a protective layer of enamel followed by hard tissue called dentin. Inside, teeth are filled with a soft pulp, which contains blood vessels and nerves. If decay reaches the pulp, root canal therapy is usually the only way to save the tooth. However, if decay has destroyed the dentin, but the inner soft tissue is still healthy, you may be a candidate for pulp capping. During this procedure, your Lakewood dentist will cover up the pulp with restorative material, which will stop the spread of decay and ease dental sensitivity.
What happens during direct pulp capping?
Direct pulp capping is required when dental pulp is fully exposed. Dr. Sigurdson or Dr. Patel will clean your tooth and remove any decayed tissue. Then he will place a sedative material, such as calcium hydroxide, over the pulp. This material will promote healing and stop decay. Finally, he will place a filling or another restoration on top of your tooth.
What happens during indirect pulp capping?
Indirect pulp capping may be necessary if the pulp is close to the surface of your tooth, but it is not yet fully exposed. This is a two-stage procedure. The first stage is identical to direct pulp capping – your dentist will clean out bacteria and apply a sedative material to stimulate remineralization of the dentin. Then your practitioner will place a temporary filling.
Six to eight months later, your dentist will remove the filling and assess healing. If your dentin has regenerated, Dr. Sigurdson or Dr. Patel will remove any remaining damaged tissue and place a permanent filling. As with all of our dental fillings, our lifelike materials will harmonize with the natural color of your teeth.
What are the benefits of pulp capping?
Pulp capping allows your dentist to preserve as much of your tooth structure as possible. In turn, it may eliminate the need for root canal therapy, extraction, and tooth replacement.
Furthermore, pulp capping can be a highly effective way to stop infection. One study showed a 100% decrease in microorganisms just one hour after the application of calcium hydroxide.
Call Us to Learn the Best Way to Save Your Tooth
Don’t let dental damage or infection go unchecked. Timely care may save your tooth. To learn more about pulp capping and our other minimally invasive procedures, contact Lakewood Dental Group today. You can schedule an appointment online or call us at 214-827-1885.