Really basic question: Fillings in baby teeth - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 6 Old 04-15-2010, 03:49 PM - Thread Starter
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I admit, I am very uninformed when it comes to dental issues- my kids have never had any dental problems with routine hygiene, and we went for a routine checkup recently, and my 4 yo has 2 small cavities. Without much explanation, the dentist said it was due to "defects", not inadequate brushing, and to come back to get them filled. I thought I have read/heard something about not filling baby teeth. I just don't feel comfortable getting this done, knowing next to nothing about it. The dentist is pretty good and we like the office, but he's not one to give you long explanations.

I don't want to put this off or not do it if the decay will progress and give him problems, but don't want to do a procedure if it really isn't necessary. How dire is this? Can I wait a few weeks while I do some reading?

I do adhere to WAP diet principles as much as possible, our food comes from good sources, but being a 4 yr old, I am very limited in my ability to get him to eat certain things or take supplements.

Thanks, and sorry if this is a totally obvious question.
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#2 of 6 Old 04-15-2010, 07:12 PM
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I wouldn't do anything about them. My son has the same "defects" in his teeth and they are congenital and all you have to do, in my opinion, is keep them from turning IN to cavities. Get some MI paste (go to amazon) and apply it every night along his gumline and to the area where there is decay, and let him sleep with it in. You can try xylitol, too.

I would not do anything. Get a second opinion, but pediatric dentists want to fill everything, even if it doesn't need it.

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#3 of 6 Old 04-15-2010, 07:29 PM
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Do you think by defects he means pits or weak spots? If it is not decay, it is your choice to fill/seal. Well it is your choice either way, of course, but waiting on treatment will mean absolutely nothing. Sometimes the baby teeth have natural pits that are hard to keep clean and can collect food, causing decay.

If it is weak enamel, check out MI paste (Plus has fluoride, regular does not, both have dairy) or Squiggle Tooth Builder toothpaste.

FYI - a lot of the sealants slowly release fluoride and many/most will not adhere permanently in baby teeth but may protect them for a while.

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#4 of 6 Old 04-15-2010, 07:36 PM
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I would set up an appointment specifically to talk about your concerns. If you're talking about cavities, then it would depend to me on how serious they are, how quickly they seem to be growing, if they're bothering the child, and what teeth they are in. Between 5-6, kids lose baby teeth starting with the middle two top and bottom. At 4, if it's mild and not bothering him, you might be able to forego treatment on teeth that will come out soon anyway. But I had a 2 year old with decay that was affecting her ability to eat and chew properly, so she needed cavities filled. You can't ALWAYS skip filling cavities in baby teeth.

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#5 of 6 Old 04-15-2010, 07:41 PM
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Because he's not going to be losing those teeth soon, I would have them filled.

My son had three cavities by the age of three, also related to pitted teeth. The dentist told me that if he were closer to the age of losing his baby teeth, she'd advise us to leave them alone, but because he was only three, filling was advised because untreated decay can spread to the gums and cause other problems. I have had enough dental problems myself. I didn't want him to. We opted for the fillings.
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#6 of 6 Old 04-16-2010, 03:31 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks a lot!! I just called and cancelled the appt because I need to know more about it before going ahead! I have not heard of that toothpaste, I will check it out! The spots were brown, and pitted, and previously at checkups they said it wasn't a cavity, and now, a year later they say it is. It is not painful or bothering him right now.

My kids are "late" with most things- they didn't get teeth till around a year, and my older son just lost his first tooth at 7, so I'm thinking at age 4 he will still have these teeth for possibly 3+ more years!

I'm glad to know it isn't urgent, I feel better about taking time to research it! Thanks for your help!
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