Baby Teeth – Save Them or Pull Them?
Unfortunately most people, do not understand the importance and the role that primary (baby) teeth play in a child’s life.
By the time most children are 3 years old, they will have 20 baby teeth. These teeth are very important and they serve several functions. They help the child chew and speak, they play a role in the child’s physical appearance, and they maintain the spaces for the permanent teeth.
Permanent teeth grow and develop under the baby teeth. If the baby tooth becomes infected, this can harm the permanent tooth as well. Damage to one can lead to damage to the other. This is why the dentist wants to treat diseased primary tooth.
If a child loses second baby molar, it can no longer maintain the space for the permanent tooth that is growing between its roots. If the baby molar is lost, the tooth behind it will start to drift forward into the space. If this occurs, the permanent tooth may not have enough room to be able to come into the mouth in a normal position.
In addition, chewing will be difficult with the loss of the baby molar.
Sometimes a baby tooth may be so diseased that it cannot be saved. If this is the case, the dentist has no alternative but to extract (pull) the tooth.
In a situation like this, the dentist may recommend a space maintainer. A space maintainer is a device that is designed to preserve the space of the missing primary tooth until the permanent tooth is ready to come into the child’s mouth. Space maintainers are not always needed when a child loses a baby tooth too early. Your dentist will explain what clinical situations require this type of treatment.
Primary teeth are very important, and every effort should be made to keep them in a child’s mouth. Although it is true that dentistry can treat badly diseased teeth, this treatment is costly and time-consuming. However, there is a more cost-effective approach to solving this problem. It is called prevention.
The proper approach to maintaining baby teeth is to practice prevention. With proper brushing, flossing and regular visits to the dentist, a child can preserve his or her baby teeth until it is time for them to be replaced by the permanent successors.