By Dr Rina from Round Corner Dental
Crowns in Children’s Dentistry- As dentists, we don’t love doing fillings on baby teeth. We would love to never have to touch one, except to give it a polish!
The old “it’s just a baby tooth” mentality is shifting nowadays, and we have come to understand how essential baby teeth are for oral health, development, and speech.
Keeping them healthy and in position until they naturally fall out will help maintain space for the adult teeth to erupt in their correct position. This reduces the risk of expensive and lengthy orthodontic treatment later. Baby teeth need to be looked after just as well as the permanent teeth that eventually replace them.
Unfortunately, we continue to find decay in baby teeth in many children that come to see us. The structure of a baby tooth is a bit different to an adult one. The enamel layer is not as thick, and the pulp in the centre of the tooth which consists of blood vessels and nerves is larger and closer to the surface. This means decay can spread and affect the nerve much faster than in a permanent tooth.
Regular white fillings just do not work as well in baby teeth, they often fail and require multiple replacements. When the cavity is large, or the baby tooth is broken, we may recommend a prefabricated stainless-steel crown be placed. This is like a silver-coloured safety helmet to protect the tooth from further damage and help retain it for as long as possible. A crown should last until the baby tooth is ready to fall out naturally.
The benefits of crowns for baby teeth include:
• Full protective coverage
• Affordable and cost effective
• Easy to fit and cement
• Far less likely to require retreatment
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