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Posted by on Jun 18, 2015 in Uncategorized |

Baby Tooth Damage Or Premature Extraction: Saving Space For The Adult Teeth

If you have a young school-aged son or daughter, then you very likely have many concerns about the way your child is developing. Part of this development process involves the proper formation of the adult teeth and the loss of the baby teeth. Sometimes, accidents, injuries, and poor oral care can cause baby tooth problems that prevent them from properly saving a space for the adult tooth forming below. Fortunately, your child’s pediatric dentist can make sure that the adult teeth are still able to come in strong, healthy, and in the right position. Find out how this happens by reading on.

Placement of Stainless Steel Crowns

In some cases, children brush their teeth quickly or forget to brush the back teeth. When this happens, food bits force their way into the fine, but deep crevices that line the flat edges of the molars. When food is not removed, cavities form. Unfortunately, the teeth as a whole will retain over 5,000 pounds per square inch of pressure as you bite. Around 160 pounds of pressure is placed on each of the molars alone. This kind of pressure can easily crack a tooth that is already weak.

To prevent a cavity-ridden molar from breaking or to strengthen one that has already cracked, your child’s dentist will secure a stainless steel dental crown.

The Crown Process

As previously stated, the baby teeth are meant to be placeholders for the adult teeth that will emerge later on. This means that your child’s dentist does not need to think about aesthetics when saving a tooth, and thus an inexpensive metal version is created. First, your child is treated for cavities. In most cases, lidocaine will need to be injected beforehand if the tooth also need to to be shaped. If the tooth is broken, then the dentist may use a shot-free laser removal process to release decay. This will minimize pain and reduce the need for a local anesthetic shot that can be frightening to a child.

After the cavity is removed, enamel is removed if there is a need. The dentist will use a pre-fabricated metal cap, and the smallest possible crown will be used that just touches the teeth on the right and left sides of the molar to retain space. The crown is shaped to fit the tooth and bite properly, dental cement is spread on the underside, and it is slipped on the tooth.

After the crown is secured, the pediatric dentist may also use plastic sealants on the other molars to protect them from cavities for up to 10 years, or until the adult teeth come in. This helps to prevent future cavity and crown issues. 

Space Maintaining Devices

If your child has endured a serious accident and one of the baby teeth has been knocked out completely, then it is possible that the baby or adult teeth near the gap will migrate into the space. The teeth do this as biting pressure and stress force the teeth to move little by little to the side. Eventually, the hole fills in and the adult tooth in the gums has no opening to emerge. This can cause the tooth to slip either in front or behind the other teeth where tissue resistance is minimal. Your son or daughter’s dentist may decide to place a space saver or maintainer in the mouth to stop this from happening.

Device Options

Space maintainers can be made and used for many different purposes and reasons. In the case of a missing baby tooth, a fixed or cemented device is needed. If only a single tooth is missing, then a crown and loop device will be used. A connector or crown is placed on the tooth next to the space and a metal ring, circle, or rounded-oval is attached to the connector. The ring sits close to the gums and butts up against the tooth on the other side of the gap. An open space in the middle allows the adult tooth to come in.

If your child is missing one of the first molars, then added support is needed to make sure the space does not close. In this instance, a distal shoe is utilized where a metal prong is stuck directly into the gums. The ring and metal connector will look much the same as the crown and loop device.

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Posted by on Jun 2, 2015 in Uncategorized |

Tooth Chip Repairs – Information About Bonding And Crowns

The teeth are made to withstand a great deal of pressure, and in fact, dental enamel is the strongest material in the entire body. This strength is due to the large amount of calcium-phosphate molecules that line the surfaces of the teeth. Unfortunately, demineralization does occur, and total bite pressure in the mouth exceeds 5,000 pounds per square inch. The teeth are made to withstand 30,000 pounds of pressure, but minute cracks can form that reduce strength immensely. The small cracks and demineralization mean that the teeth can sometimes chip or break apart along the cusp. Pain, sharp edges, and cosmetic concerns may bring you to the dentist after a tooth injury. Your dentist can repair the tooth with a bonding procedure or a dental crown. Keep reading to learn about these general dentistry procedures so you can decide which is best for your situation.

Dental Bonding

Dental bonding is a process where small gaps and imperfections in the teeth are repaired with the placement of resin. Cracks and chips can be fixed with resin as long as the tooth damage is relatively small. Resin is not nearly as strong as the ceramic, porcelain, or steel materials that are used when a crown is made. However, resin is relatively cheap. In fact, your dentist will use the same type of composite material during the bonding procedure that is used when a filling is placed. This means that you can expect to pay around the same amount as you would if you were receiving a filling and bonding can be completed in a single day. 

Dental bonding also does not require any lidocaine or other anesthetics unless the dental professional needs to smooth out the chip. This may be necessary if a sliver of natural tooth material lines the damage. A larger and smoother area can help the resin adhere to the tooth dentin better. Once the tooth is ready, your dentist will use a dental shade guide to find the exact hue or tone of the tooth that is being treated. The correct resin color is chosen, it is formed to fill in the tooth damage, and a UV light hardens the composite. Usually a drill or burr tool will be used afterwards to smooth and shape the composite. Your input will be used to make sure the bonded edges are the right shape.

Once the bonding is complete, you can expect the repair to last for three to seven years. 

Dental Crowns

The placement of a dental crown is one of your other options to have your cracked or chipped tooth repaired. Usually, a crown is the right choice if a large area of the tooth is damaged. If a smaller area of damage occurs, but the tooth becomes infected and needs a root canal, then a crown will likely need to be placed on the tooth afterwards as well. This is best because the leftover enamel and dentin will be brittle. In general, dental crowns are a great choice when a tooth needs added strength, structure, or protection. A single dental crown will likely cost you between about $500 and $2500 dollars, but it can last for up to 15 years.

Dental crowns do require some extensive preparation. A local anesthetic will be provided and either some or all of the dental enamel will be removed from the exterior of the tooth. An impression is made of the newly shaped tooth and your dentist will arrange for crown creation through a laboratory. Depending on your needs, porcelain, steel, or a combination of the two materials will be used to form the tooth cap.

Your dentist will need to adhere a temporary acrylic crown on the tooth until your next appointment where the permanent cap is placed. The same sort of shaping that occurs during bonding may need to be completed to perfect the shape of the crown. All in all, you can expect the entire crown process to take a few weeks.

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