Using Cosmetic Dentistry To Fix "Baby Bottle Mouth" In Children: What To Expect

"Baby bottle mouth" is the phrase given to children who have suffered tremendous damage to their teeth because they were frequently put to bed with bottles of formula or juice. The formula or juice collected and pooled in their mouths while they slept and then proceeded to cause decay to their tooth buds and baby teeth. It leaves them not only in pain, but with a frighteningly unpleasant smile. Cosmetic dentistry can help somewhat with this issue, and here is what to expect.

Milder Cases of Baby Bottle Mouth and Dental Procedures

If there is only some decay on a few of the child's teeth, your dentist may just treat these teeth as though they have cavities. He or she will drill to remove the decay, then fill the teeth. If the damage is moderate, the dentist may grind the teeth down and cap them so that your child can chew, talk and smile normally until these teeth fall out and your child's adult teeth grow in. If your child's teeth are capped, he or she will have to refrain from biting or chewing anything especially sticky or hard so that the caps do not splinter or chip. (You can brush and care for the capped teeth just as you would with natural teeth.)

Severe Cases of Baby Bottle Mouth and What Your Cosmetic Dentist Can Do

When your child's teeth are severely affected by this condition, your cosmetic dentist may not be able to cap the teeth because there might not be enough original tooth material left to cap. In this case, the dentist may opt to surgically remove the badly damaged baby teeth and use orthodontic wires to keep the remaining teeth in alignment until the adult teeth break through the surface of your child's gums. A partial denture may also be used if the teeth are pulled because the denture will help maintain proper spacing of the remaining teeth.

Cases So Bad That Even Adult Teeth Are Affected

If your dentist treats the baby teeth for this condition, and then the adult teeth come through partially damaged, then you might have to repeat some of these procedures. Because adult tooth buds are right above the roots of the baby teeth, it is possible for the decay to travel through the roots of the baby teeth and start affecting the adult teeth before they have even erupted. If you discover in the future that this is what has happened to your child's teeth, he or she might have to have dental implants or replace these teeth with a partial that he or she will have to wear the rest of his or her life.

To learn more, contact a cosmetic dentistry clinic like Wallington Dental.