A sensitive tooth is more than just a minor inconvenience--it may be a sign that your tooth is suffering from the condition known as pulpitis. Unfortunately, many people fail to understand even the most basic things about this condition. If you are interested in improving your dental knowledge, read on. This article will provide answers to three of the most frequently asked questions about pulpitis.
What exactly is pulpitis?
As its name would imply, pulpitis is a condition affecting the pulp inside of your tooth. Many people fail to realize that pulp is a living part of your body. Thus it is composed of elements like blood vessels, nerves, and a variety of cell types. In order to continue living, dental pulp requires a constant flow of blood.
Pulpitis is what happens when the amount of blood flowing into the tooth is too great. This is often correlated with an infection in the pulp; the increased blood flow is your body's way of trying to fight the unwanted bacterial invaders. The excess blood causes the pressure inside of the tooth to rise, thus leading to an increase in sensitivity.
What are the treatment options for pulpitis?
A particular case of pulpitis may be categorized as either reversible or irreversible. Reversible pulpitis means that no permanent damage has been done, and your tooth is still capable of being healed. Your body can sometimes naturally and successfully combat the infection at the root of pulpitis without the need for dental intervention. However, your dentist may choose to prescribe a special toothpaste or mouth rinse designed to minimize any pain.
Irreversible pulpitis, as you can probably imagine, is a much graver condition. Here there is no hope of saving the pulp inside of the tooth. The best case scenario involves having a root canal performed on the afflicted tooth. During this procedure, the dying pulp will be removed in order to keep the infection from spreading, and to prevent more serious conditions such as abscesses.
Which type of pulpitis do I have?
If you think you may be suffering from pulpitis, it is vital that you see your dentist as soon as possible to receive a more refined diagnosis. Your dentist, such as at Family Dentistry Of Woodstock, will likely perform a number of different tests meant to determine the extent of your sensitivity. Your tooth will yield quite different results depending on which type of pulpitis you have. In general, a case of reversible pulpitis means that your responses will be markedly sharper.