Some parents are surprised when they find out their young child already has a cavity. Many things can lead to the need for a filling, but more distressing still might be when that filling comes loose. Read on and find out how to keep your child from developing an undeserved fear of the dentist after a filling loss.
Healthy Dental Habits Must Be Fostered
If you developed a fear of the dentist because of one or more negative experiences, you may now have a dental phobia, leading to poor dental hygiene and missing teeth. You might be worried about how to best handle potentially stressful dental issues. If your child has lost a filling, there is much you can do to mitigate any possibility of upsetting your child. To that end, take the following steps:
1. Phone your dentist right away. Your child may not only be in discomfort, but you may need to have the assurance of knowing an appointment is lined up. In an adult, a lost filling is not exactly an emergency. Dental offices are well aware of how things are different when dealing with a child in need of some dental help and will likely do everything possible to fit you into the schedule.
2. Cope with your child's pain. A missing filling could result in an exposed nerve and, as you might already know, that could be extremely painful to deal with. When a tooth is painful, even the intake of air over the tooth can bring discomfort. Food and drinks can bring about cries of pain, particularly if they are very cold. Until you can get your child to the dentist, try over-the-counter pain relievers. You can also dab a bit of a topical pain reliever onto the area for a temporary numbing sensation.
3. Consider a temporary fix. You can purchase dental cement at the drugstore and either replace the filling or use it to fill the space left by the filling. If the tooth is badly damaged, the cement could help keep things together until the dentist steps in with a more permanent fix. You don't want your child to accidentally destroy what is left of the tooth when eating.
4. Prep for the visit. Have a positive attitude about the dental visit and don't get stressed out yourself. Talk about what to expect with your child using age-appropriate language and keep things low-key and casual. Let the child plan a fun activity later on in the day or the next day to help them focus on that rather than the visit. To find out more about this issue, speak to your pediatric dentist.