Drastic Measures: Crowns for Kids and Baby Root CanalsJul 08 2014

crowns for kids and baby root canalsPediatric dentistry is a highly contested area of debate. Baby teeth are built quite differently in comparison to permanent adult teeth because they serve a very different purpose. Under the surface of our gums the roots of baby teeth naturally dissolve when the teeth are lost and ultimately the teeth will naturally fall anyway. Dental procedures like root canals and crowns are sometimes viable options but some skeptics wonder if they’re becoming too common.

A root canal, often also called a pulpectomy, removes the dead tissue that’s built up behind a lost tooth. Without treating the root problem, pun intended, the tooth can abscess and, in extreme cases, result in bone loss. Sometimes, however, dentists allow the tooth to fall naturally, knowing that the roots will dissolve. It’s often more a question of timing and location in the mouth when making the decision if a child actually needs a full root canal procedure.

The decision to install a baby crown is a similar process. The only time that a child should require a crown is in the case of extreme damage or breakage. Long-term tooth decay should not be an issue, theoretically, if the child has been set on a consistent hygiene routine. Crowns can prevent further damage if the tooth is especially susceptible but the cost can also be quite extreme to cover a tooth that is soon going to fall out on its own.

Dr. Mark Warner, DDS, Fairfield, CA dentist, will consult with you about your child's needs and come up with a plan with which you are comfortable before proceeding.

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