Extracting milk teeth

Posted by Dental News Team On January - 28 - 2010

Should milk teeth be pulled or shouldn’t they?

Parents are not the only ones who ask themselves this questions, but quite a lot of dentists do as well!

Milk teeth are not only needed to chew and talk, but they also stimulate the growth of the jaw. But if parents do not teach their children proper dental care, it is sometimes necessary to remove milk teeth ahead of time.

This is necessary when:

  • the next tooth cannot come out (guided extraction)
  • there is a chronic infection, e.g. a fistula has formed at the tip of the root causing problems
  • the tooth has been so severely damaged by cavities that it can no longer fulfil its function as a placeholder.

Milk molars play a very important role in the development of a child’s jaw and should be kept intact until the first permanent molar (six) comes out. If the milk tooth in front of a permanent tooth has a filling, then it is crucial to run a thorough cavity check! – –

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Cavities in milk teeth

Posted by Dental News Team On October - 29 - 2009


Should cavities in milk teeth be removed?

Dentists keep finding cavities in children’s milk teeth and telling parents that it’s best to do nothing at all.

This is wrong, because

  1. Cavities are caused by bacteria which can spread to and damage other healthy teeth
  2. Cavities destroy teeth, which makes the other teeth squeeze closer together, so that the tooth sector gets smaller. But this tooth sector acts like a kind of bracket which stimulates the growth of the jaw. If this growth is slowed down and the remaining teeth end up crowded together in an adult’s mouth, this is usually caused by cavities in milk teeth
  3. Permanent teeth that are coming out can be affected
  4. Cavities often cause teeth to die out, which leads to inflammation in the bones. Abscesses and fistulas result

Cavities in milk teeth should always be removed, and if several teeth are affected, then treatment should be performed under a general anaesthetic in order to keep the child from getting traumatized.

As a parent, you should make sure that your children improve their brushing habits, as cavities in milk teeth are a sign that children are not brushing properly:

  • Children need their parents’ help in brushing their teeth twice a day until the age of ten. Only at this age does a child have the fine motor skills that enable it to brush its teeth properly on its own
  • You should give your child water to drink, not juices containing sugar
  • Make sure the toothpaste used does not taste too good, otherwise children won’t want to spit it out
  • If the child throws a tantrum – don’t worry, all children do – stay on the ball, and if necessary brush „by force“. Use the same techniques as when you teach your child not to cross the street on a red light, go ahead and brush the child’s teeth yourself! Only you know the dangers of not brushing your teeth, your child doesn’t …
  • Let your child watch you while you brush, hum songs or whatever to show your child that you’re having fun
  • Lay down rules for brushing just like you do for eating – no playing with toys while at table or at the sink!
  • Small children respond well to suggestions such as „Let’s scare off of the cavities monsters“ or „Let’s help the little tooth sprites clean your teeth“, this helps make brushing more fun
  • Get plaque tablets to check how well your children brush
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What to do when babies get milk teeth

Posted by Dental News Team On October - 28 - 2009

My baby is getting its first teeth, what should I do?

babyIf your baby is starting to get its first milk teeth and they come out yellow or black, they need dental care!
Read this short report to find out what to consider.

Just when parents get used to the new routine, the sleepless nights start up again – the first teeth appear!

Dental care begins with the first tooth!

  • Take a wet cloth and wipe the tooth which is coming out. As soon as the tooth has come out, use a soft brush with plastic bristles
  • After brushing do not give the baby anything containing sugar (not even milk)
  • Take your child along for a visit to your dentist, so it can get used to the surroundings even without getting treatment
  • Do not use more than a pea-sized gob of toothpaste once your child is able to spit (e.g. Weleda children’s tooth gel). Do not use toothpaste with flavor additives  (e.g. strawberry) – they make children swallow the toothpaste instead of spitting it out!
  • If you use fluoride tablets, you should avoid using toothpaste containing fluoride (ask your dentist or pediatrician)
  • You may need to help your children brush up until the age of 10, when the fine motor skills of the child are fully developed!
  • Black teeth ususally means cavities – a dental check-up is needed – cavities should ALWAYS be removed, even from milk teeth!
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