Cavities and Crowns

Updated on October 14, 2009
K.F. asks from North Attleboro, MA
9 answers

My now 4 year old had 3 cavities at her first dentist appointment. They are decaying more rapidly than expected and our family dentist has recommended the child-equivalent of crowns and they recommended us to a pediatric specialist for second opinion and if necessary to do the work. What am i in for? This sounds like a terrible procedure for a 4 year old? has anyone been thru this?

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S.G.

answers from Boston on

I have 4 children. If they are teeth that she will be losing in the next year or two. Don't do anything to them. I'd never crown baby teeth. Small fillings don't even need to be fixed as long as you keep a good watch on them and brush them well every night. Play dentist before bed and use a flash light. If they don't seem to be getting worse, leave them alone. They'll fall out before you know it.
Good luck,
S.

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H.W.

answers from Hartford on

Hi K.,

I've just went through something similar with my 3 1/2 year old. She had 2 severly decayed teeth, an abscess and a number of other cavities. Our pediatric dentist recommended pulling one of the teeth and putting in a spacer, doing a pulpectomy (baby root canal & capping) on the other, and filling the cavities while under anesthesia, and doing it all in one shot. We did, and I'm so glad this is the route we went with. Dramatic, yes. Expensive, certainly. But I wasn't going to put her through the trauma and drama of doing it in the dentist office and perhaps giving her the same dentist-phobia I have! Erin now loves her dentist, and I completely trust him too. I would definately recommend a second opinion with a pediatric dentist - just for your own peace of mind.

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C.B.

answers from Boston on

I would have a pediatric dentist check her, but baby-teeth are not usually filled since she will start losing them at about age 5-7. If they do fill those they might want to seal the others (brush on a sealant and then let is dry - does not hurt) to prevent the others from decaying. They might also talk about good and bad foods for teeth, show you how to brush her teeth (our dentist recommends that I still take an occasional turn up to 10 years old so certainly at 4 years you should be doing most of the brushing). I would ask the professionals what they suggest. Good luck.

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A.C.

answers from Boston on

In my opinion spending money on crowns for teeth that will be coming out in a couple of years is a waste.I have crowns,and it's not a procedure I would want to put a child through unless absolutly necesarry. I would recommend a second and even third opinion by dentists of YOUR choosing. It's a sad thing, but unfortunatly there are medical professionals who will take advantage of the fears of patients in order to bill at higher rates. Having another opinion or two will ensure that you are doing the right thing for your child. Good Luck.

M.L.

answers from Hartford on

Let me guess, they want to crown her molers!!! I do not think they crown the other ones. My daughter just went through this. She is 5 1/2! She had a few cavities then all of a sudden she got a ton! We are constantly brushing her teeth and flossing and mouth wash!!! My daughter does not drink soda or eat junk. Some people just have bad teeth. My daughter had to have two teeth pulled due to absesed teeth and now has four crowns on her molers. This is to protect them from future decay and having to have them pulled. I know an awesome DR!!! He is great but he does not see people as regular patients, he just gets them through these tough times. It is terrible!!! I do not want to lie. I was tramatized even though my daughter handled it pretty well. I can give you the name of the Dr if u want for a second opinion. He helped a lot. Does your daughter take flouride or is there flouride in your water?? That is very important with new teeth developing. Contact me with any ?'s or if u want info on the DR. I am not sure where u live.

Talk to u soon!

M. - SAHm of three and work at home mom and loving it!

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J.R.

answers from Springfield on

Not sure where you are located but I have a wonderful Pediatric dentist located in Springfield, MA. His name is Dr. Matthews and his practice is called The Kids Dentist. The staff is wonderful and they have tv's in every room playing disney movies that the kids can watch while they have the work done. Plus they always get to pick some prizes from the treasure box. I went through the same problem with my son when he was three. He ended up having a gaping hole in one of his molars, he wouldn't let the dentist touch him so we had to have him put to sleep. The procedure took all of 20 minutes. The dentist took x-rays of his whole mouth, while the xrays where developed he did a cleaning and once the xrays came back he did 12, yes I said 12 fillings, one being a crown/cap. Through talking with the dentist, my son had naturally soft teeth and are prone to cavities but what really caused it was letting him carry around a sippy cup all the time. I'm glad to say the he is 9 now and we have had some other cavities in the time but we do as much as we can for prevention. He brushes his teeth and then I would brush them, use a liquid flouride not tablets and also no chewy candy -like fruit rollups. My kids know that they are bad for their teeth and we actually give them each a box for xmas and that's all they have year round. The procedure when he was 3 went very well. He actually had 3 thought it was cool to have a "shiny" tooth because the cap was silver. I hope this helps. My son still has his cap/crown so I would say it was very worth it to save the tooth for him. Good luck

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M.C.

answers from Boston on

I agree with others that I wouldn't do all this work to baby teeth unless absolutely necessary. Get the book, 'Cure Tooth Decay', join the yahoo group that goes along with it and start focusing on remineralizing her teeth naturally so you can avoid this problem in the future! Best wishes!

E.T.

answers from Boston on

Hi K., I am so sorry about this - it must be painful for you as the Mom. I sincerely recommend going for a second opinion before embarking on this road. Please consult with Dr. John Herzog in Danvers - his ph # is ###-###-####. I guarantee he will see you right away. He is so easy to talk with and specializes in painless dentistry. He is also great with children and has a 2-year-old of his own. I also believe that he can handle the crowns, etc. right there if you decide to go with him in the end. Please at least call and meet with him before making this huge decision for your daughter. Best Wishes. E. Taft If you wish to contact me with more questions about Dr. John, feel free - ###-###-#### [email protected]____.com His office is right on the main street in Danvers Square, and it is beautiful.

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A.Y.

answers from Boston on

My daughter had to have a tooth pulled because of the decay they sedated her because they wouldn't have been able to do it otherwise. My guess is that they would do that for your daughter too, my daughter was 5 at the time. Good Luck!!!

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