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Dr. Cynthia Pelley
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Little Smiles Pediatric Dentistry
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8708 SE 17th Ave, Portland, OR 97202
(503) 235-0313
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Should You Even Bother Filling Your Child's Baby Tooth?

Posted on 4/20/2016 by Cynthia Pelley
A young boy brushing his new smile repaired with dental fillings!You take your three-year-old into the dentist and find that despite your best efforts to keep his teeth clean, he has a cavity.

What should you do? Why would you even bother filling a tooth that is just going to fall out in a couple of years?

There are actually a number of reasons why you want to fix the baby teeth. They serve an important role in your child's long-term oral health, as they will allow the permanent teeth to erupt properly and in the correct positions. Primary teeth help with speech development and good nutrition via proper chewing, and failing to treat them when they have a problem could cause the permanent teeth to have developmental problems.

Most of all, your child will get a wealth of confidence and self-esteem from his smile, so large cavities or unsightly gaps can be detrimental to how he feels about himself.

If your child's pediatric dentist detects a cavity, he will likely recommend a filling as the primary treatment option. This will help to prevent the decay from spreading any further.

In some cases, the level of decay might be so advanced that added treatment options are needed, such as placement of a silver cap or steel crown. Stainless steel can provide the tooth with full protection that will keep the rest of the tooth safe until the permanent tooth underneath it is ready to move into its spot.

In other severe cases, a root canal might be needed. This is recommended if the decay has been allowed to travel into the center of the tooth to access the blood vessel and nerve.

If the infection is allowed to spread into the bone, the tooth might need to be removed entirely, and your child's dentist may recommend a space holder in order to ensure that the rest of the teeth don't shift into different positions.

Please contact us if you have any questions about your child's baby teeth.

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Little Smiles Pediatric Dentistry - Cynthia Pelley | | (503) 235-0313
8708 SE 17th Avenue, Portland, OR 97202