The Ultimate Guide to Treating Tooth Decay in Children

Every child goes through tooth decay in his early years. When the tooth enamel breaks down, it results in tooth decay. As enamel acts as the protective hard covering of the tooth so when it gets destroyed, children start getting cavities in their teeth. These cavities are actually black holes in the teeth caused by bacteria. When sugars or any starchy material is left behind in the teeth while eating then the build-up results in the destruction of enamel.

Foods like candy, soda, raisins, fruits juices, and bread can be changed into acids by bacteria living in the mouth. When bacteria, food, saliva, and acid mix together, they form a substance called plaque which actually is the root cause of the decaying of teeth in children.

Causes of tooth decay

Normally all children have bacteria in their mouth and there may be numerous causes of cavities and tooth decay in children. The following causes may alert the parent for a visit to the dentist.

  • High sugary diet
  • Poor oral hygiene
  • Less saliva flow
  • Usage of limited or no fluoride-based toothpaste

Symptoms of tooth decay

The following symptoms may appear to be different for every child but the most common are as follows:

  • If the gums are bleeding or are red or swollen then that means that there is trapped bacteria inside the child’s teeth
  • The gum line on the baby’s front teeth must be seen by the parent for close monitoring of plaque.
  • If there are white dots on the gum lines then it is a clear sign of plaque
  • The cavities in the enamel appear to look brown and then changes to black if left untreated Pain in the affected area for which antibiotics can be taken from
  • Sensitivity to sweets and cold drinks
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It is important to treat cavities in babies as the child’s teeth act as placeholders for adult teeth formation.


The dentist may need to go through the child’s medical history to properly diagnose the tooth decay. A medical examination of the child’s mouth or a dental X-ray may tell whether the tooth decay is serious or not.


Some factors are to be kept in mind while treating a child’s tooth decay like his age, general health, or symptoms. In the most common cases, the affected area of the teeth is removed and replaced with a filling. Fillings are placed inside the teeth for damage repair caused by cavities. Fillings are also called restorations and they are direct or indirect.

Direct restorations are done by directly placing the filling inside the prepared hole. These fillings may be composed of silver glass powder or raisins.

Indirect restorations usually require 2 or more visits to the dentist as they include inlays, outlays, veneers, crowns, and bridges. They are mostly composed of gold, metal alloys and may look like normal tooth enamel. There are many methods to treat cavities in children but prevention is better than cure so parents must train their children to keep good oral hygiene and avoid too many sugary foods.

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