Restorative Pediatric care
Restorative options for baby teeth come into play when there is an active cavity present. The words “Your child has cavity” is quite frightening for most parents. You do not have to worry. Not all decayed teeth need a removal or root canal, the depth of the cavity and symptoms play a role here in deciding what will be the best option for your child.
Silver Diamine Fluoride
A minimally invasive option for uncooperative children to restrict the spread of cavities. It usually leaves a black stain post application but ensures restriction in bacterial growth.
Tooth colored filings
If your child has a cavity, we may recommend a tooth colored filling depending on where the tooth is located and/or how large the cavity is. Tooth colored fillings are usually resin based fillings, which are used for small to medium sized cavities. They can withstand the normal chewing and biting forces of the teeth.
Root Canal treatment (Pulpectomy)
When a cavity progresses deeper into the roots a root canal treatment is advised. In baby teeth this is also known as Pulpectomy. Removal of cavity from the depth of its spread, limits any infection being transferred to the new permanent teeth forming below. When the baby teeth have a long time to fall on its own, this would be considered as the ideal treatment option. After doing a root canal, there is usually a crown advised to help use the tooth normally.
Zirconia crowns are tooth colored crowns that are used on root canal treated teeth, teeth that have large cavities, fractured front teeth or as an aesthetic restoration. They are widely preferred for their aesthetic look, almost masking the tooth with a natural finish. These crowns can be used on the front teeth and the back teeth. The crowns are pre-fabricated and can be placed in a single sitting.
When the tooth exfoliates, the crown falls out on its own and requires no special removal.
Stainless Steel Metal crowns
Metal crowns or Stainless steel crowns are advised after a root canal in most cases. They are also used for restorative purposes where a root canal might not be required but a filling cannot be done. These crowns are pre-fabricated unlike adult teeth, so the time duration for placement can be done in a single sitting. When placed on a primary teeth, they fall on their own when the tooth exfoliates.
Extractions are usually the least preferred option of treatment unless it is considered absolutely necessary. Extraction mean removal of the teeth from the jaws. They are followed when the tooth in question is completely damaged and beyond repair. If a tooth has had an abscess with roots resorbed or if there has been a trauma are our most common reasons to remove any teeth. The procedure is usually done using laughing gas with local anesthesia as an adjunct, if necessary.
If a tooth is extracted or removed for some unfortunate reasons prior to its time of exfoliation, it leaves a gap there which could affect the function or esthetics for the child. The space here is restored or maintained using space maintainers. Primary (baby) teeth are important for holding space for the un-erupted permanent tooth. When a primary molar tooth is lost prematurely, the neighboring teeth may tip or drift into the space, leaving little or no space for the permanent tooth to erupt. There are several different types of space maintainers, and they are custom made to fit your child’s mouth.
Scaling or oral prophylaxis, is considered more as a treatment for restoring gums and teeth into their healthy form. Scaling is advised when there is a presence of calculus, poor oral hygiene and poor gum health associated with presence of plaque. Poor gum health affects the overall health of the teeth and jaws and also stands as a cause for formation of cavities.