Losing teeth is a necessary and oftentimes exciting part of childhood. What little one does not get excited when one of their baby teeth falls out? The experience, however, can be quite different when a family dentist must extract a tooth before it is even loose. Why are childhood tooth extractions sometimes necessary? What can you do to make the experience as easy as possible for your little one? This basic guide explains.
Reasons for Childhood Tooth Extractions
There are a few reasons why a family dentist might decide to remove one or more baby teeth before they are ready to fall out naturally:
- A tooth has incurred severe decay or damage, and it is causing the child pain.
- It is necessary to make room in the mouth for phase 1 orthodontic treatment.
- A baby tooth has overstayed its welcome and is threatening the health of incoming adult teeth.
- Overcrowding is present in the mouth that may interfere with the child’s jaw development.
Preparing Your Child for Extractions
Understandably, your child may be a little nervous about undergoing extractions. Before their procedure, you can take a few steps to make things as easy as possible for them:
- Explain to them that your family dentist does not want to hurt them, and that the procedure will be as comfortable as possible.
- If sedation will be used, explain what your child may feel while under its influence.
- Let your child know why the extractions are necessary and that the procedure will ultimately be beneficial for them.
Helping Your Child Recover from Extractions
Here are some tips to facilitate a smooth recovery for your child:
- Give them soft, no-chew foods for a few days. This can include things like applesauce, smoothies, brothy soups, and even ice cream.
- Do not allow them to use drinking straws. The suction action could dislodge the blood clot at an extraction site and contribute to a painful complication known as dry socket.
- Provide painkillers as necessary. Be sure to carefully follow any medication’s dosing instructions.
- Encourage your child to get enough rest. You might need to prepare a movie marathon or some other low-energy activity to entertain your child while their mouth heals.
Childhood tooth extractions can be an intimidating but necessary experience. Use the guidance in this article to make your little one’s experience as stress-free as possible.
Meet the Practice
The experts at Meriden Dental Group are pleased to welcome patients of virtually all ages. We perform childhood tooth extractions with gentleness and patient comfort as high priorities. If you have questions or concerns about your little one’s oral health, we are ready to consult with you. Contact our office at 203-404-6800.