Baby teeth (also known as “primary teeth”) are the first set of teeth to erupt in a child. Most people believe that these cavities do not need treatment since the tooth will eventually fall out. There are many reasons why it is essential to have dental cavities filled on a baby tooth.
The process of tooth loss starts at about six years old. Baby teeth are usually present until 12 or 13 years old. The need to fill a baby tooth depends on their age, which tooth, and the tooth’s condition. A small cavity on a tooth that will fall out soon may be okay to leave untouched. Teeth with large cavities that may stay in the mouth for 1-2 more years would likely need to be fixed.
Importance of baby teeth: The baby teeth act as a guideline for the eruption of permanent teeth (adult teeth). Losing a tooth too early can cause other teeth to drift into the space. This will prevent the adult tooth from coming out in the right spot. As a result, other interventions such as extractions or braces may be required.
It is also important to consider the comfort of the child. A large hole in the tooth can spread bacteria and cause infection. This can lead to pain and discomfort and more invasive dental procedures.
It is best to leave this to the dental staff if your child is still quite young. Giving details of a filling appointment may get your child unnecessarily worked up or nervous. The staff are trained to handle children and use age-appropriate language to explain the procedure.
If you are concerned that your child may have a cavity, please contact us for a checkup.