When a child has a cavity in one of their baby teeth, it is common for parents to question why it needs to be filled. If it is going to fall out anyways, why not just pull it? The truth is – baby teeth are important! Considering that some baby teeth don’t get replaced by a permanent tooth until 10 or 12 years of age, there are consequences to just pulling a tooth unnecessarily or too soon. There are several reasons why repairing or filling a cavity on a baby tooth is best, including the following:
#1 Chewing/Nutrition: Since your child needs his or her baby teeth to properly chew foods, it is important that cavities are treated and eating isn’t painful for your child. If not, proper nutrition can be threatened.
#2 Speech: Baby teeth play a critical role in allowing your child to form words and speak properly as they develop in language.
#3 Permanent Teeth Eruption: Baby teeth are designed to hold the space for adult teeth to erupt correctly. If the baby teeth get severely decayed and need to be pulled too soon, the position of their permanent could be jeopardized.
#4 Overbites: You may think of a cavity as a short-term consequences. However, damaged baby teeth can actually lead to overbites or improper jaw structure. This can be costly to correct as an adult.
#5 Decay Can Spread: If your child is not complaining about a cavity, you may falsely assume it won’t cause further harm. Unfortunately, if decay is not treated properly, it can spread throughout the tooth and into neighboring teeth. If decay reaches the inner pulp of a tooth, the nerves are affected and it becomes extremely painful.
At Riverwood Dental, we proudly provide excellence in pediatric dentistry. We are equipped to provide services that preserve the function and health of your child’s smile as they grow. If a cavity needs to be filled in your child’s tooth, we use comfortable procedure methods and tooth-colored fillings to maximize satisfaction. Call our Atlanta office today to schedule your family dental appointments!