What is pulpitis?
Pulpitis is a dental condition, which occurs when the pulp tissue becomes inflamed. The pulp contains the living tissue of the tooth, including the blood vessels and nerves. Pulpitis usually results from untreated decay, which causes bacterial infection to spread through the outer layer of the tooth into the dentin, the softer part of the tooth, which contains the pulp tissue. Once the infection reaches the pulp, there is a race to save the tooth, as the tooth will effectively start to die.
To a certain extent, it is possible to reverse pulpitis, but this means acting quickly before the infection takes its toll on the pulp tissue. If the infection is detected early, we can clean the tooth, remove the decayed pulp tissue and fill the cavity before irreversible damage is done.
What happens if pulpitis is irreversible?
If pulpitis is irreversible because the condition has become more advanced and the tissue has started to die, it is still possible to save the tooth. We can do this by carrying our root canal treatment; this is a procedure, which involves removing decayed tissue from the root canals and then filling them with dental material and sealing them off to prevent any further spread of infection. Often, root canal treatment is a preferable alternative to tooth extraction. After root canal treatment, it’s common procedure to fit a new crown to strengthen the tooth.
The best ways to prevent pulpitis are to practise good oral hygiene at home, watch your diet and see your dentist for regular check-ups. Keep an eye out for possible warning signs of decay, such as sensitivity and toothache and see your dentist if you do develop symptoms.