If your dentist has recommended extracting one or more of your child's baby teeth, it's likely that you have many questions. While some of those questions can be answered by the dentist, you'll probably think up many others once you get home from the appointment. You need to feel comfortable with your decision before you have one of your child's teeth extracted. This article will help you understand why a tooth extraction may be a good decision for your child.
Extraction may be the best choice for decayed baby teeth
If your child has one or more teeth that are decayed, they may be able to be repaired with fillings. However, if they are seriously decayed, an extraction may be the only course of treatment if fillings or caps can't be used. Also, a decaying tooth that's so bad it has led to an infection may need to be extracted to avoid a more severe infection that could spread and cause more pain.
Extractions may help adult teeth come in straighter
If your child's baby teeth are causing the crowding of their adult teeth, the adult teeth may grow in crooked. In this case, a tooth extraction would make room for their adult teeth to grow in correctly and can even prevent the possible necessity for braces later on.
Extractions can prevent permanent damage to adult teeth in the case of an injury
If your child has injured a baby tooth and pushed it up into their jaw, it can damage the adult tooth. If the baby tooth is left hitting against the adult tooth, it can cause long-term damage and the permanent tooth can come in malformed, discolored or misaligned. In this case, extracting the baby tooth will allow the adult tooth to come in as it normally would.
What to expect if your child does have a tooth extracted
You can expect your child to be uncomfortable following the procedure. You can use ice packs to help ease the pain. If the dentist gave you any prescriptions, make sure they are given on time and don't miss a dose. Your child should not suck on a straw right after having a tooth extracted. Sucking can cause the clot to dislodge, leading to a painful dry socket. Feed them soft foods for the first few days and allow them to get plenty of rest.
If you have other questions about tooth extraction, offices like Brookside Dental Associate can help.