Working With A Great Dentist
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Working With A Great Dentist

I have always been one of those people who loves to get out into the world and talk with other people, but a few years ago, I realized that I had to do something about my smile. My teeth were yellow and unattractive, and it was really discouraging to see how much different my smile was. I knew that I needed to get my teeth fixed, so I started working with a professional dentist to make things right. Within a few short months, my smile was completely transformed, and I knew that I owed it all to my dental professional. Check out this blog for more information about working with a dentist.


Working With A Great Dentist

What Should You Do When Your Child Chips A Baby Tooth?

Harper Hughes

A chipped tooth should be checked out by a dentist. It might only seem like an emergency if the damage has resulted in immediate pain or a sharp increase in the tooth's sensitivity. But treatment shouldn't be avoided or even delayed too much. A permanent tooth that experiences a chip will generally need to be reconstructed. But is it the same case when your child chips one of their baby teeth? Again, it might not seem like an urgent matter if your child isn't in pain. The damage has the potential to be more serious than you might be expected, so you should schedule an appointment at your local pediatric dental clinic.

The Tooth's Internal Structure

Even when there doesn't appear to be significant damage, the tooth's internal structure may have been exposed. If the chip has displaced your child's protective dental enamel, the dentin usually concealed below may now be unprotected. This dentin is more susceptible to acidic erosion, meaning that, without treatment,  the tooth may experience an accelerated rate of deterioration. Should this deterioration reach the tooth's pulp and nerve, then the subsequent inflammation and infection can call for a root canal. In the short term, a chipped tooth may not be especially serious. However, if the need for treatment is ignored, then serious long-term damage becomes more likely. So why is your child's dentist suggesting that no treatment is needed?

Dental Exfoliation

A dentist may suggest that some children with chipped teeth won't greatly benefit from treatment. This can be the case when the tooth is a primary (or baby) tooth, and dental exfoliation (loss of the tooth, followed by the eruption of a permanent tooth) is imminent. If the anticipated loss of the tooth is going to occur far sooner than any further deterioration caused by the chip, then treatment may not be required. This reflects the fact that restorative treatment on a tooth soon to be lost becomes somewhat redundant. The imminent growth of the permanent tooth will be confirmed with an X-ray. Of course, if the development of your child's adult tooth is still some years away, treatment cannot be avoided. 

When Treatment Is Needed

Treatment will differ, depending on the tooth in question, and the size of the fragment that has been chipped away. If possible, retain the fragment. Your child's dentist can often cement it back into place. Don't be concerned if it was lost (or even swallowed). Your child's dentist can reconstruct the missing fragment using a dental composite resin. When the missing fragment is too small to make reconstruction necessary, your child's dentist may only need to smooth away any sharp edges, in order to prevent lacerations to your child's tongue or the lining of their mouth.   

A chipped baby tooth will generally require some form of restoration, but this may not necessarily be essential if the tooth (chip and all) is soon to be lost anyway.