Everyone has primary (baby) teeth, and most people (around 60%) experience some level of tooth decay that affects baby teeth. But, baby teeth are temporary, and not as important as adult teeth, right? Wrong. Primary teeth don’t last forever, but they are not expendable and untreated cavities can cause serious immediate harm, and negatively affect how a young mouth develops.
YES – Cavities in Baby Teeth Must be Treated
Tooth decay is 5 times more common than asthma, 4 times more common than childhood obesity and 20 times more common than childhood diabetes. Tooth decay is an acid attack on tooth enamel that can lead to cavities – which are essentially holes in teeth. Cavities on baby teeth are treated with fillings, which help prevent the cavity from worsening or spreading.
When tooth decay is not treated by dental professionals, or with proper oral care, teeth can become riddled with cavities. Children with cavities affecting their primary teeth face many risks that affect their overall development.
Teeth Damaged by Cavities can:
- Impact children’s nutrition, and impede them from eating healthy food.
- Cause overbites, and bite alignment problems that require oral appliance to fix.
- Hinder adult teeth from growing in straight and healthy.
- Impede proper speech, and negatively affect self-esteem.
- Cause severe tooth pain, that worsens without treatment.
- Lead to infections that affect nearby teeth, and cause more cavities.
Baby teeth may be temporary, but their impermanence does not mean that they are not important. Children with cavities on their primary teeth face oral health challenges now, and in the future they mature into adults.
Symptoms of Baby Teeth with Cavities
It’s pretty easy to spot the symptoms of tooth decay and cavities, but only a dental professional can accurately diagnose and treat cavities in baby teeth. If your child exhibits any of the following, then schedule a visit with our office as soon as possible so we can treat the root of their oral health issues.
Common symptoms of cavities in baby teeth:
– Pain in the tooth when chewing, or brushing.
– Pain below the gum line that is localized around on tooth or area.
– Increased sensitivity to temperature extremes, like hot or cold beverages.
– Visible holes, discolorations, or dark spots on teeth.
– Persistent bad breath that is not alleviated by consistent brushing or mouthwash.
How to Prevent Tooth Decay and Cavities
Cavities are the most prevalent childhood disease in the United States, but it’s also the most preventable. You can empower your child to prevent cavities and tooth decay by helping them get into a proper oral health routine, which means brushing twice per day for two minutes at a time, and flossing once per day. You can take easy dietary measures to prevent cavities, too. Try removing sugary beverages from their diet, and substitute them for water, which is one of the most powerful tools in the fight against cavities.
Does Your Child Have a Cavity or Tooth Decay?
Visit our office if your child experiences persistent tooth pain, or pain in their gums. They may have severe tooth decay or cavities that need to be treated It’s impossible to diagnose a cavity by yourself, and only trained dental professionals can accurately diagnose and treat cavities. We treat children of all ages, and help families get their oral health on track by giving them the tools and knowledge needed to keep a healthy smile that lasts a lifetime.