Most kids never need to have any of their baby teeth removed. As long as you make sure they’re maintaining good oral health, they can just keep them until their adult teeth come in and their baby teeth fall out naturally.
However, there are some situations where your child may need to have one or more of their baby teeth removed. In this blog from the office of Patrick Stuckey, we’ll discuss a few scenarios in pediatric dentistry that may require your child to have their baby teeth removed.
1. Severe Decay Or Infection That Can’t Be Treated With A Pulpotomy Or Root Canal
One reason that a baby tooth may be extracted is due to severe tooth decay or infection. In most cases, a pulpotomy (also called a “baby root canal”) or a pulpectomy (root canal) can be used to eliminate the infected tissue inside the tooth and restore it, keeping it intact until the adult tooth erupts.
However, this is not always possible. In some cases, the tooth may be far too damaged or decayed to save it. In this case, pulling the tooth is the best option. This will eliminate your child’s pain and discomfort, and ensure that the infection doesn’t spread.
2. Tooth Fracture Or Damage Due To Oral Injury
Most of the time, a broken or fractured tooth can be treated with a dental crown and/or root canal therapy, depending on how deep the break is. By cleaning and covering up the tooth, your dentist can preserve it for years to come.
Again, though, some damage is just too great. If your child’s tooth has been completely destroyed, or they did not get pediatric dental care quickly after their accident, it may be preferable to pull the tooth instead of trying to save it.
3. Eliminating Overcrowding & Preparing For Braces
It’s not uncommon for kids to need to have one or more baby teeth pulled if they have a narrow palate and crowded teeth. This is usually done in preparation for braces, and is particularly common if your child is “behind schedule” when it comes to the baby teeth falling out naturally.
Whether or not an extraction is right for your child will be determined on a case-by-case basis. You should definitely see an orthodontist specializing in pediatric dentistry to make sure that extractions are the best option for ensuring proper oral development as they grow.
4. Baby Tooth Won’t Fall Out To Make Room For The Adult Tooth
This is another orthodontic issue that’s relatively common. If your child has a baby tooth that won’t fall out and the permanent tooth has started to erupt, the baby tooth may need to be extracted.
This condition is often called “shark teeth,” since it looks similar to how sharks have multiple rows of teeth in their mouths. Usually, your child will need to have the baby tooth pulled, and may also require orthodontic treatment to move the primary teeth into the proper position, depending on the extent of the issue
Need Help? Contact The Office Of Dr. Patrick Stuckey For An Appointment!
Dr. Patrick Stuckey is an experienced family dentist , and has lots of experience treating kids of all ages. We only recommend tooth extractions as a last resort at our office, and we can help you decide the best option for your child’s unique situation. Contact us online or give us a call at (318) 255-8648 to schedule an appointment in Ruston today.