Got Questions? Ask a Pediatric Dentist: Part Two

You have probably heard the expression that knowing you have a problem is half the battle. Unfortunately, when it comes to parenting identifying problems can seem like a very uphill battle. After all, when your children are young you cannot always trust that they will talk to you when they are not feeling well, much less when something seems wrong with their smiles. They probably don’t know, themselves, what constitutes a dental problem or even an emergency. Fortunately, that is why pediatric dentists work closely with parents, to help educate them about how to best care for their children’s smiles, as well as how to spot potential problems early on, when restorative treatment is often fast and effective!

Does my kid need restorative dentistry?

If your child is struggling with discomfort or other symptoms of a dental problem, restorative treatment may be required. Even baby teeth may require restoration like a filling or a dental crown, because this can help preserve the fragile tooth, which can help ensure a permanent tooth comes in correctly.

Fillings are fast and efficient, in many cases, for protecting teeth after cavities, which are by far the most common dental issue. In some cases, though, a dentist may recommend the added protection of a stainless steel dental crown.

Is extraction the easiest option for children?

Though extractions are sometimes the best way to address tooth infections and other dental problems, they are rarely a dentist’s first choice. That is because an early extraction of a baby tooth can potentially cause alignment issues for the permanent tooth.

In most cases, it is best to first try to save a damaged or infected tooth through the use of a dental filling, dental crown, or a pulpotomy, for instance. Only if these measures will be ineffective will a dentist likely recommend extraction as an option.

An orthodontist may also recommend an extraction if a permanent tooth has begun to erupt while the “baby tooth” is still present, or if it will be otherwise beneficial to maintaining or creating a more proper alignment of the permanent teeth.

filed under: Children's Dental Services, Preventive Treatments