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Prevention is always our number one goal in dentistry, but sometimes, no matter how hard parents try, accidents happen. In fact, tooth decay is one of the most common chronic childhood illnesses! Luckily, your child’s smile is in good hands with Dr. Gary’s restorative treatments.
What is restorative dentistry?
Restorative dentistry is the practice of repairing or replacing damaged or missing teeth. In children, this could refer to their primary teeth (baby teeth) or permanent teeth. Although a child’s primary teeth will eventually fall out, it’s important to keep them healthy until they do.
Some goals of pediatric restorative dentistry include:
- Preventing decay
- Stopping decay from spreading to other teeth
- Ensuring children can eat, drink, and speak easily
- Promoting good oral health
Types of pediatric dental restorations
The most common pediatric dental restorations at our office include fillings, dental crowns, space maintainers, and extractions.
Fillings for children
Bacteria, sugar, and acidic foods can all eat at the enamel of your child’s teeth. If left to sit on their teeth over time, they can cause tooth decay - also known as a cavity. When your child gets a cavity, it’s important to fill it to prevent the decay from spreading to surrounding teeth.
When diagnosed early, most cavities can be treated with simple fillings of silver amalgam or tooth-colored composite resin. The filling replaces the decayed portion of your child’s tooth, and can last for many years with proper dental maintenance.
Dental crowns for children
If tooth decay is too extensive to be treated with a filling, we need to use a dental crown. A crown is a custom protective cap made in the shape of the original tooth. Crowns can help to save teeth from early extraction.
When placed over a baby tooth, a dental crown will provide protection until it falls out naturally. On permanent teeth, crowns will remain in place for many years.
Space maintainers for children
If children lose their teeth early (or never grow them in) due to genetics, disease, or dental trauma, the open space can be encroached on by the surrounding teeth. To prevent this from happening, we use space maintainers to hold teeth in their proper positions.
A space maintainer may be made of metal or acrylic and can be fixed or removable. It will remain in place until the permanent teeth grow in, or the adjacent teeth fall out.
Tooth extractions for children
We avoid tooth extraction whenever possible at our office, but sometimes, it’s the best option for your child’s health. If we recommend a tooth extraction, we offer multiple sedation options to make the procedure as smooth as possible for your child.
Book an appointment for your child today
If you think your child could benefit from restorative dentistry, book a pediatric dental exam with Dr. Gary today.Book a dental exam