Is Silver Diamine Fluoride Application Right for My Child?
Silver Diamine Fluoride application is a common tooth decay treatment and prevention option in babies, toddlers, and children. As a parent, you are likely wondering if silver diamine fluoride (SDF) application is really right for your child.
SDF is often times the ideal in the following situations:
- Babies and toddlers: This is the least-invasive option to treat baby tooth decay. It can also keep teeth from decaying further. Some parents wonder if it’s necessary to treat baby tooth decay since the teeth will fall out—it is necessary. Children need strong, healthy teeth to chew their food and to speak.
- Multiple cavities: SDF application can cover up to eight teeth at once. Filling multiple cavities takes longer and is less comfortable for children, making this the preferred option for kids with multiple cavities.
- Special needs: Children of all ages with special needs may not have the ability to restrict their own movement enough to receive numbing. They also may not understand the process enough to remain calm. SDF can treat their cavities in just minutes, without causing undue distress.
- Older kids: Kids up to age 13 can deal with tooth decay in baby teeth while their permanent teeth come in. With a skilled application, SDF can keep decaying baby teeth from negatively impacting surrounding permanent teeth as they emerge and develop.
- Genetic predisposition: If you have a family history of more-easily getting cavities, SDF can lower your children’s risk of getting cavities.
SDF is not recommended if your child has: a silver allergy, significant damage to their front teeth, been diagnosed with gingivitis or lichen planus, or if they don’t want to have stained teeth at all.
Silver diamine fluoride application is internationally-recognized for its safety and effectiveness of treating and preventing cavities. SDF is a commonly-used tooth decay treatment option in infants all the way through the loss of the last baby tooth. Additionally, it has a lower cost and requires less time at the dentist than traditional fillings. If you have any questions or would like a consultation, contact one of our offices.
What Are Frenectomy Procedures?
A frenectomy is a simple surgical procedure that involves the removal of one or both frena from the mouth. The frenum is a connective tissue membrane that attaches one surface within the mouth to another. Frenum means bridle in Latin, and this term is used because it restricts tongue movements when it is connected by a frenulum between two surfaces inside of the mouth or pharynx. The two types of frenum are known as the labial frenum and the lingual frenum. In some cases, a frenectomy can help with breastfeeding and relieving respiratory issues.
A labial frenectomy is a procedure that removes the small tissue connecting the upper lip to the gum between your two front teeth. It can also cause gum recession by lifting the gums off of the jawbone.
The lingual frenum is a small fold of tissue in the middle of the underside of the tongue. It can be positioned too far forward, which can cause it to over-tighten and restrict your tongue’s movement when it comes to speaking, singing, and eating. Lingual frenum, also known as being “tongue-tied,” can also impede an infant’s ability to latch during breastfeeding or eating from a bottle.
Benefits of a Frenectomy
There are several benefits to having a frenectomy. Those include:
- Improves appetite and eating in infants and children
- Improves speech function
- Improves bite function
- Helps to reduce pain and discomfort
- Promotes self-confidence in children and teens by eliminating gaps in the smile
What Happens After a Frenectomy
In most cases, the pain from a frenectomy is mild, and it heals quickly. The patient can have normal function of the lips and tongue. Many patients hardly notice the effects of the surgery.
For more information about frenectomies and if one is right for your child, give one of our two offices a call. We’re always happy to explain more and help you decide if it’s right for your child.
Why Are Baby Teeth Important?
Tiny, but important ― that’s how baby teeth are referred to, especially by dentists. While most parents would look at their babies’ tiny teeth and wonder what in the world they could be thinking about, dentists realize early on that these tiny teeth aren’t just for looking at cute smiles and giggles.
Taking good care of your baby’s teeth early on is crucial to their oral health now and for the rest of their lives. We’ve come up with several reasons why you want to keep your baby’s teeth in tip top shape.
- These teeth are crucial to your child’s health and development. They help with the development of permanent teeth by saving space for them in the jaw. When a baby tooth is lost too early, the permanent teeth can drift to the empty space and make it difficult for other adult teeth to find room when they come in.
- Baby teeth aid in speech development. Taking care of your child’s teeth will help them speak and communicate better.
- They help your child maintain good nutrition by permitting him/her to chew properly.
- Baby teeth help children feel good about themselves and their smile. It’s so important for children to feel confident from a young age and keeping their teeth healthy is imperative.
What happens if baby teeth aren’t taken care of?
Baby teeth can get cavities, just like adult teeth. In addition to the pain caused by cavities, they can also lead to dental infections. Tooth decay is a serious, infectious, and transmissible disease that can spread quickly and lead to infection. If a tooth needs to then get extracted, this can cause the teeth to drift, which may lead to overcrowding and difficulty for the adult teeth to grow in.
Be sure to visit a dentist within six months of your child’s first tooth appearing and definitely by the time they reach the one year mark. Our team will check for cavities and any other pediatric dental problem. We’ll also help show you and your child how to properly take care of their teeth. Give one of our offices a call today!