I need some advice. My 5-year-old daughter has severe decay on her molars. She tells me it hurts when she chews. I looked at it and the decay seemed to be over 30% of her teeth. The problem we face is she never lets a dentist work on her. What do you recommend I do?
I can tell you care about your daughter. I’m going to tell you that your daughter will need some tough love. You’ll have to get her to a dentist. I realize she is uncooperative. Though that’s not unusual at her age, there is a solution. Many pediatric dentists offer sedation dentistry for children.
Some people call this sleep dentistry because most patients sleep completely through their procedure. This is especially true of children. Your daughter will be perfectly safe and this will enable you to get her teeth properly dealt with.
The molars are especially important because they have to stay in place until she is about twelve years old. Without that, her permanent teeth will shift and cause massive crowding. Then you’d be dealing with a complicated and expensive orthodontic treatment.
Decay in Pediatric Dentistry
There are a few things which can happen here depending on the extent of the decay. If the decay is extensive, your pediatric dentist may have to do a pulpotomy and dental crown. A pulpotomy is essentially a child’s version of a root canal treatment. Once the pulpotomy is done, they will put a prefabricated crown on her teeth. For children, that is generally a stainless steel crown. These are much less expensive than traditional crowns.
If it turns out her molars can’t be saved and the must be extracted, it is important your dentist places space maintainers there to prevent shifting.
The extent of your daughter’s decay makes me wonder if she snacks a lot throughout the day. That is a big contributor to decay and there would be few other reasons for so much decay at her age. I know it is hard but you’re going to have to severely cut back on her snacking to help with her teeth.
This blog is brought to you by Huntsville Dentist Dr. Steve Murphree.