Ugly smile of your child – Causes and Treatment

By on December 24, 2012
bad teeth

Most commonly appearing type of decay pattern found in young children after the eruption of upper front teeth. This decay pattern appears as chalky white discoloration of upper anterior teeth usually near to the gum margin.

Its spreads from upper anterior to posterior region and then it spreads to lower teeth. Slowly the chalky white appearing teeth became yellow and then brownish and blackish in color. This type of decay spreads all around the tooth below the gum line. Finally the tooth gets fractured leaving behind root stumps.

Actually it is very difficult for a common man to sort out the etiology of this decay pattern.  Most of the doctors say it is a calcium deficiency and then give calcium tablets for this condition. The basic reason behind this decay pattern is taking sweetened beverages while the child sleeps. Either Milk or milk+sugar or fruit juice or even breast milk can cause this particular type of decay pattern.  As the child sleeps with bottle in his mouth, the upper anterior teeth always found immersed in this sugar pool.

Oral bacteria act on this sugar pool and convert this sugar to lactic acid. So while the child sleeps, his front teeth will always immerse in a pool of weak acid which demineralizes the inorganic content of tooth followed by destruction of organic content result in cavitations.

teeth medicine

To treat this first step is to stop the cause.  This is by stopping the nighttime feeding habit after the eruption of upper anterior teeth.  It is very difficult for the parent to stop the habit but no other way.  Giving plane water after giving this beverages or wiping with clean cloth and all will not work as the mother and the child is as this happens while the mother and child are in a sleepy mood. So discontinuing the habit is the only option.  If the mother found very difficult to stop the bottle-feeding habit, then at first slowly cut the sugar factor followed by diluting the beverage and finally at the end of three weeks, completely convert this sweetened beverage to Luke warm water with out the knowledge of the child.

feeding babies

Usually mothers give night time feeds to make their child healthier, but unfortunately the reverse happens as tooth decays sensitivity will increase and the child was not able to take any of the food materials, which end up in a negative result. Next step is to strengthen the tooth material with the help of fluoride treatment.   Finally the decayed tooth material is reconstructed by the help of dental cements.  If the anterior teeth became root stump, better do a root canal treatment followed by restoration as the anterior tooth is very important in proper speech modulation, aesthetics, and confidence and if not properly restored the child refused to smile.

Article by,

Dr. Sreejith KR, Pediatric Dental Surgeon  
KIMS Hospital, Trivandrum.

Email : krjithu@yahoo.com

Image courtesy : dentistnorwalkct.com , parentingclan.com , softchalk.com , esrc.ac.uk , womenworld.org

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