At Children 1st Dental & Surgery Center, we understand the desire to save every last baby tooth possible. Yes, these teeth will fall out at some point. However, it is ideal that they fall out in their own time, not as a result of dental disease. Prioritizing preventive care and early treatment, it is our hope to minimize the need for dental extractions. In the even such a procedure is needed, our protocol is to perform service in a way that is effective and not frightening for the young patient.
Why Extraction may be Needed
There are only two reasons that extraction is recommended for a child. One is that a tooth has been badly damaged. This could be from decay or from a direct injury that has caused a bad fracture. The other prominent reason for extractions is that teeth are pushing up against one another, or overlapping, and space needs to be created for permanent teeth to grow in.
How Extractions are Planned
Before tooth extraction, a thorough consultation and examination are performed. We use x-ray imaging to observe the root of the tooth or teeth and, in the case of dental decay, we consider the option of pulpotomy as a more conservative approach to repair. When the extraction is necessary, antibiotics may be prescribed for use before and after the procedure as a way to prevent infection.
We expect children to be nervous about dental treatment. That is our very focus! In some dental offices, extractions are performed with local numbing medication alone. Not in our offices. Our expert use of sedation facilitates safe, efficient care for each patient. Sedation dentistry is beneficial not only because our patients do not have to experience fear and anxiety, but also because the mind does not even remember being in the treatment room. Children who don’t remember procedures like extractions grow up with a better perception of dentistry as a whole, and that is a win in our book.
Before the extraction procedure, parents are provided with clear aftercare instructions. Generally, children’s comfort is easy to maintain with over-the-counter pain medication. If the jaw is slightly sore, ice packs may be applied for short periods of time. Finally, children usually enjoy their temporary soft-food diet that includes treats like Jell-O, pudding, and smoothies (just no drinking through a straw!).
For more information on our services, contact an office near you.