Caries in children

Caries incidence in children and young adults is decreasing all over the world and that is very good news, but it is still not completely eradicated. With most of the cities moving on to fluoridated water and with the use of fluoridated toothpastes this has been achieved. Still caries remains one of the most prevalent oral diseases in the world for children.

Most of the parents are always on top of their child’s oral hygiene and have now acquired high level of dental knowledge than maybe 10 years ago. This has helped in pushing more preventative measures for children and has helped greatly in improving their oral health. 

However, we still see a lot of incidences of caries in children. This is multifactorial. We as dentists sometimes are too harsh in coming to conclusion that most of the caries caused in young children is a result of a neglect. This may be true in some cases, but again there are other factors which lead to increase in risk of caries incidence in children.  A few of them are, high level of caries producing bacteria, un-cooperative child, Lack of attention to the child due to active work hours of the parents etc.

Can these factors be detected and controlled, certainly yes. It just requires patience and the right questions asked by the dentists to find the cause. Once the cause is found the preventive work can begin. At the same time parents need to understand that there is nothing miraculous that will happen overnight, in fact it always must be a teamwork between the dental staff and parents to cater to child’s oral health. Great understanding and team work always pays off. 

The biggest preventive measure that we take is application of fluoride for young children till all their permanent teeth have erupted. This not only helps in stopping new lesions from developing but at the same time it offers good resistance to existing minor lesions. 

The other preventive measure that we can take is application of Sealants. This has helped a lot of kids. But care must be taken by the dental professional placing sealants for proper moisture control and that no caries is trapped underneath it. Over the years of practice, I have seen lot of trapped caries underneath the sealants, hence I have changed my approach to placing Preventive resin restorations on teeth with deep grooves and/or arrested caries. This has resulted in good caries control on the molars and has helped in creating a smooth cleansable tooth.

What is the best treatment for caries on baby teeth?

Well it depends upon the size of cavity, but usually the gold standard for caries in baby teeth is Stainless Steel Crowns. (SSCs).

I have many parents in the office who ask me not to perform Stainless Steel crowns (SSCs) on their children’s teeth as they feel the child and they themselves may be embarrassed by them. I always let the parents make their own informed choice, but after initial consult and showing them the benefits of SSCs over white fillings on baby teeth most of them agree to go for SSCs. The latest development in this is that they have developed tooth coloured crowns now, but it is still in its infancy phase and only time will tell about its success. It still is a good option to consider in the near future, but till that time SSCs still remain vital in treating baby teeth.

Please visit any one of our nearest locations to get more info and to meet the staff and dentists before making your choice.

Written by,

Dr. Shreyank Patel (DDS).

Treatment options provided at One Dental

  • Complete through check ups with our friendly staff.
  • Patient specific treatment plans.
  • We aim for prevention and parent education.
  • We provide sleep dentistry in kids with extensive treatments at a general dentist fee guide.
  • We always involve parents in the process and working as a team with them is our greatest strength.
  • We also take referrals from other dental offices.

Please visit any one of our nearest locations to get more info and to meet the staff and dentists before making your choice.

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