Excess blood flow to the pulp gives rise to hyperemia. This is result of gingival recession causing expose of the tooth root and dissolved cementum.
The pulp consists of blood vessels and nerve tissue, which when inflamed due to bacterial infection causes pulpitis. The excess blood flow cause widening of blood vessels that is vasodilatation.
The tooth in general is sensitive to heat and cold due to increased amount of blood flow. It is also sensitive too sweet food. Such teeth show no clinical caries when examined.
Hyperemic tooth shows two types of changes in the pulp – Reversible pulpitis and irreversible pulpitis.Reversible pulpitis is of mild nature. The inflammation in such tooth is mild and the tooth can be saved as the pulp remains healthy. In reversible pulpitis the pain disappears after seconds. the pulp is able to heal when the irritation factor is removed. This is not seen in case of irreversible pulpitis. Irreversible pulpitis cause severe pain wherein the pulp cannot be saved and the tooth goes into a root canal treatment or if delayed further then an extraction of that tooth.
The pulp is surrounded by dentin. there is no way for the pressure created to dissipate, the increased blood flow will result in pain.
The causes of hyperemia can be as:
- Intentional crown preparation done to a healthy tooth, which acts as an abutment.
- Trauma to the tooth which may lead to thin fracture in enamel.
- Deep scaling procedures affecting to the root.
- Root caries in close proximity to the pulp.
- Orthodontic wires create pressure to teeth causing blood flow changes.
The hyperemic tooth is sensitive to touch, there’s always a dull or throbbing pain associated and there’s a raise of body temperature too.
Hyperemic tooth can be prevented by:
- Brushing twice a daily
- Avoid sugary , starchy food
- Visiting your dentist for fluoride treatments
- Replace your toothbrush every 3 months
- Scaling and polishing of teeth twice every year.