Did you know that about one in five kids has untreated tooth decay? If you suspect your child has a cavity, you’ve come to the right place. Untreated cavities can lead to tooth decay, pain, infections, and more. Even in a baby tooth, your child’s symptoms could worsen if left without treatment.
Thankfully, we have treatment solutions that can help make sure your child gets the care they need. From the causes of tooth decay to the treatment options, we’ll go over everything you need to know about cavities and children’s dental care.
Causes of Cavities in Children
Cavities are often caused by plaque that builds up and starts to decay a tooth. Starch and sugar in food will break down the enamel of a tooth. Once the enamel is broken, this leads to tooth decay. This will erode their teeth and make them far more likely to suffer from infection and damage.
You may be surprised by some of the worst snacks for your child’s teeth. Raisins and dried fruit are prime examples. They may seem natural and healthy, but they are also sticky. This causes the dried fruit to stay stuck on their teeth for the entire day.
Hard candy is one of the worst snack choices for kids. Not only can they chip a tooth, but they can also leave a lot of sugar on the teeth and gum line. Gummy bears are another treat to eat sparingly. These will also stick to teeth leaving sugar on their mouth for a long period of time.
Goldfish and pretzels are two other common kids snacks that can be troublesome. The salt from these snacks leaves a carbohydrate on teeth that will stick if they aren’t removed. With any of these snacks, it’s helpful to have kids brush their teeth or rinse with water after they are done eating.
Do You Need to Treat Cavities in Baby Teeth?
While you may think cavities in baby teeth aren’t anything to worry about it, it’s important to come in and have them looked at. Even though baby teeth will fall out eventually if they have a bacterial infection this could spread from tooth to tooth. This means any adult teeth that have come in could also be affected.
If you suspect your child has a cavity, it’s time to bring them in for a visit with us. If the baby tooth is loose, we may suggest letting it fall out naturally. If it isn’t or there’s a risk of bacteria or infection, we’ll want to treat it right away.
Even if you don’t suspect a cavity, it’s important to bring your child in for their regular check-up and cleaning. We can tell you if a cavity is there or forming and if we see any other problem areas. This is also a great chance to have their teeth professionally cleaned to prevent cavities in the future.
We’ll remove tooth decay and bacteria to keep your child’s mouth healthy. After your child’s exam, we’ll come up with a custom treatment plan. If any additional care is needed, we’ll put an action plan together to get their oral health taken care of.
Fillings for Kids and Other Treatments
There are several different treatment options available for your child’s cavity. We can use a dental sealant to help prevent tooth decay and also cavity growth. We also can use a filling. With a filling, the decayed part of the tooth is removed. It’s then replaced with a filling to keep food particles and bacteria from getting inside the tooth.
If the tooth is badly decayed, we can also protect it with a crown. While this is rare, pediatric crowns can help keep your child’s bite intact. It will also help prevent further damage to the teeth.
A pediatric crown is a prosthetic tooth that fits right over your child’s existing tooth. There are also white pre-veneered crowns available for front teeth if needed. Before we perform any treatment, we’ll go over all the options available for your child.
Preventing Cavities in Kids
To prevent cavities from forming in your child’s mouth, there are a few easy things you can do at home. The first is to brush your child’s teeth twice a day. Even babies should have their teeth and gums brushed by a parent or caregiver.
After your child eats sweets, candy, or sticky food, it’s also great to get them into the habit of brushing their teeth. Try to offer fresh fruit and veggies whenever possible as snacks. These practices will help instill healthy choices later in life.
Another key to cavity prevention is to bring your child in for their annual dental visit. Professional cleanings are the only way to ensure your child’s mouth is cavity-free. It’s also our opportunity to examine their mouth and see if any other issues need to be addressed.
Treat Cavities and More at Your Child’s Next Pediatric Dentist Visit
To successfully treat cavities, we recommend bringing your child in for a dental exam and cleaning. We’ll be able to come up with a customized treatment plan for your child’s cavity. Regular cleanings will also help prevent cavities from forming in the future. To book your child’s dental appointment, fill out the contact form here.