A pediatric dentist can diagnose and treat a range of oral health concerns in children. However, their primary focus for long-term patients is on preventing issues such as cavities. This article provides an overview of why cavity prevention is important.A common misconception many parents have is thinking that cavities in primary (baby) teeth are not…
What Is Dental Bonding for Kids? [Pediatric Dentist]
When a child's tooth becomes damaged, a visit to a pediatric dentist for evaluation is recommended, even for baby teeth. Because young children are so active, chips and cracks are common events. However, the affected teeth should not be ignored, even if the pain from the injury quickly subsides. In these situations, dental bonding may be an appropriate solution to prevent future deterioration and pain. Excessive decay and severe gum recession can also be treated with this simple dental procedure.
The process of dental bonding
Dental bonding is minimally invasive and can be performed in around 30 minutes, often without anesthesia. A soft resin is applied over the damage to the affected tooth and is shaped and smoothed into place. A UV laser or light helps set and harden the resin and permanently bond it to the tooth. Afterwards, the dentist may continue to shape or file the resin to help ensure the proper formation and comfort for the patient.
Dental bonding helps the tooth appear whole and prevents the damage from worsening or spreading. While it can also be used for aesthetic purposes, such as addressing gaps or creating more uniform teeth, parents should consider the child's ability to comfortably endure the procedure if it is not deemed medically necessary by a pediatric dentist.
Follow-up care and procedures
Once a child has undergone a dental bonding procedure, parents should be vigilant in overseeing proper upkeep and care.
Caring for dental bonding in children
Children with dental resin bonds and seals can usually eat and drink normally the same day as the application procedure. Routine oral hygiene is necessary and children should avoid beverages that can stain the bonding material, such as sodas, grape juice and drinks containing artificial colors or dyes. It is important to keep in mind that the material can be broken or damaged by sudden or consistent hard impact. A mouthguard should be worn during athletic activities and bad habits like chewing ice or foreign objects should be addressed.
Long-term planning and future procedures
While dental bonding can provide necessary treatment for children with damaged teeth, it should not always be considered a permanent or long-term solution for permanent teeth. Because applying a resin bond is relatively quick and painless, it is a preferable option for younger children who may have difficulty handling anesthesia or more invasive treatments. It is also relatively inexpensive but can wear down or break over time.
Crowns, implants or veneers can offer a more permanent solution to damaged teeth, with more natural-looking results and a hardier structure. A dental professional may recommend these procedures once the child is able to withstand a more uncomfortable application process and can independently care for the natural and replacement teeth.
Individuals who damage their teeth from injury or decay should seek treatment promptly. Even if the issue involves a baby tooth, a pediatric dentist may recommend dental bonding to improve the look and function of the tooth until it can be replaced by its permanent counterpart. In permanent teeth, this process can help repair and restore the natural tooth for years until a more permanent solution may be appropriate.
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