This question is sometimes asked by parents when they find out that their child has a cavity. It seems logical: they’re baby teeth, they’re not causing any problems, they’re going to fall out.
Although practical, these arguments are not completely informed. It is important to consider the other side of the equation. What are the possible outcomes of untreated decay in baby teeth? Here are a few points to consider:
1. Baby teeth might be small and designed to eventually fall out, but they are still important for chewing and speaking. Imagine chewing on a sore tooth.
2. Baby teeth sit directly on top of the permanent teeth. If the baby teeth are damaged or infected, they could ultimately damage the permanent teeth still developing in the bone.
3. When a baby tooth is lost or missing due to cavities or infection, the teeth on each side may move into that space. This makes it difficult for the developing permanent teeth below to properly erupt into the mouth. Treatment solutions often involve orthodontic care, which can be expensive.
4. Infections around baby teeth can potentially spread to other parts of the body and cause serious illness. Fortunately, this outcome is rare, BUT it is still very important to consider.
Dr. Perusini and the staff at Avenue PD are prepared to have a candid discussion on this topic. We strongly encourage parents to be honest. Please do not hesitate to contact our office to book an appointment.