Cavities are common in children. In fact, according to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, tooth decay is the most common chronic childhood health problem. When children do develop cavities, they must be treated, even in primary teeth.
Although the primary teeth do eventually fall out, it’s important that they stay in place until the permanent tooth underneath is ready to erupt.
They will help your child to chew food thoroughly and develop proper speech patterns, and they serve as placeholders for the permanent teeth. When a tooth is lost prematurely, the permanent tooth may come in too soon, potentially causing a problem with the alignment of those permanent teeth.
Composite is a type of restorative material that we use to fill cavities. It is made of synthetic resins and is chemically bonded to the tooth structure. Most patients know composite or resin fillings as “tooth color fillings”. We prefer a composite filling over other ones because they have high aesthetic and strength qualities. The only disadvantage of a composite filling is that it requires a completely dry environment while it is being placed. So if the cavity is deep by the gum line; we cannot use the material.
Amalgam is another type of restoration material that we use for filling cavities. It is a mixture of different alloys such as copper, silver, tin, and mercury. The advantages of these fillings are the great strength to wear, bacterial resistance, and ease of application. Amalgam disadvantages are lack of aesthetics and mercury controversies.
We only use amalgam fillings if, due to exceptional circumstances, we absolutely cannot use composite as a filling.