Services Offered by Your Local Bridgeport, Shelton & Westport, CT Pediatric Dentists!
Here at Commerce Park Children’s Dentistry & Orthodontics, our pediatric dentists are firm believers that a lifetime of good oral health care begins with a child’s pediatric dentist. Our doctors offer a wide range of general treatment services for our young patients in Bridgeport, Shelton & Westport, Connecticut. We will do our best to ensure your child is both comfortable and relaxed during their visits at our office. We welcome parents in the treatment room with their child at the first visit and every visit thereafter. Learn more about improving your child’s oral health and the treatments that we offer below:
We recommend sealants to protect tooth surfaces that have grooves and pits, especially the chewing surfaces of back teeth where most cavities in children occur. They are made of clear or tooth shaded resin and are applied to the teeth to help avoid cavities.
Even if your child brushes and flosses carefully, it is difficult - sometimes impossible - to adequately clean the small grooves and pits on certain teeth. Food and bacteria accumulate in these grooves and pits, placing your child in danger of tooth decay. Sealants reduce the risk of cavities by creating a barrier against food and plaque.
Sealant application is quick, comfortable and requires only one visit. Your child's teeth are conditioned and dried, after which the sealant is applied and allowed to harden. Sealants should be applied to the teeth most at risk of decay - the six- and twelve-year molars - but any tooth with grooves and pits may benefit from sealant application.
Research indicates that sealants can be effective for several years, offering protection during the most cavity-prone years. If your child practices good oral hygiene and avoids sticky foods & biting hard objects, their effectiveness can be extended. Commerce Park Children's Dentistry & Orthodontics can easily replace or repair any damaged or lost sealant.
Tooth Colored Composite Fillings
Our Bridgeport, Shelton & Westport, CT pediatric dentists routinely restore decayed teeth with bonded, wear-resistant white fillings, rather than with traditional silver amalgam (mercury) material. Tooth-colored composite fillings give the tooth a normal appearance. Resin is bonded to the natural tooth, strengthening the union of the tooth and the restoration, thus guarding against microscopic leakage at the edges. Invisible fillings can be easily repaired by the simple addition of resin.
When baby teeth are lost prematurely, it is usually necessary to hold the teeth on either side of the space created by the premature loss so it does not close up. If the space is not maintained, the space will close and the permanent teeth will be unable to come in properly. The replacement of primary anterior teeth for esthetics, or possibly to facilitate normal speech development, may also be indicated.
If a tooth is lost on one side of the jaw, a unilateral (one-sided) space maintainer is used. If teeth or a tooth is lost on both sides of the upper or lower arch, a bilateral (two-sided) space maintainer is used. These are described as a NANCE HOLDING ARCH for the upper teeth, or a LOWER LINGUAL HOLDING ARCH for the lower teeth.
Regular six-month checkups are recommended to make sure the appliance is still fitting properly and has not become loose. If you notice the new tooth erupting improperly under, or around the space maintainer, see us as soon as possible.
To avoid the cost and time of replacement, please avoid eating the following:
- Sticky foods (including caramels, licorice, suckers, etc.)
- Hard candies
- Chewing on ice.
At night, please be certain to carefully clean around all wires, bands and other areas of the appliance, as it tends to trap food. After cleaning, please inspect the appliance carefully for damage.
Once decay has entered into the pulp, which contains the nerves and blood vessels, a normal "filling" won't work. In these instances, a root canal, i.e. removal of the pulp tissue from within the tooth, may be indicated.
Other reasons for performing a root canal include fractures where the pulp is exposed or previous cases of trauma have led to a black or darkened tooth. Symptoms may include pain or sensitivity to hot or cold foods, or swelling. But, don't be reassured if pain disappears - that could mean the nerve has died.
The treatment for a root canal involves applying a local anesthetic. Your Bridgeport or Huntington dentist will then makes a small opening in the crown of the tooth to remove the pulp from the root. This root canal will be cleaned thoroughly and then medicated, if necessary, to prevent another infection. When all trace of infection is gone, the space will be filled with a rubber-like material. Finally, your tooth will need to be restored to form and function with a crown.
Stainless Steel Crowns
When decay has destroyed a tooth to the extent that there is little support for a filling, or a nerve treatment had to be performed, it is best to surround the tooth with a crown.
If a crown is not placed, the remaining portion of the severely weakened tooth may fracture necessitating extraction. Stainless steel crowns are used to fix back teeth and occasionally front teeth where plastic is not easily retained.
To avoid the cost and time of replacement, please avoid sticky foods such as hard candy, caramel and taffy. The crowned tooth will fall out normally when the permanent successor is ready to come in.
A frenum is a fold of tissue or muscle connecting the lips, cheek or tongue to the jawbone. A frenectomy is the removal of one of these folds of tissue.
There are several indications for a frenectomy. Sometimes a frenum can be attached too high on the gums between the teeth (high attachment). This can cause a permanent gap between the teeth and recession of the gums away from the teeth. A frenectomy procedure relocates the band of tissue away from the area.
Some people have a large frenum that limits tongue movement that can interfere with speech. A lingual (tongue) frenectomy removes the fold of tissue and frees up the tongue for a full range of movement and improved speech.
Before recommending a frenectomy, we consider several factors including the probability the condition will resolve itself without surgery. When we do recommend the procedure, we are confident that the condition will no longer resolve itself. For instance, if a child has a tongue-tie, we will recommend speech therapy to see if that can correct the problem prior to recommending the procedure.
To complete a frenectomy, we use a soft tissue laser. No sutures are used. The only discomfort during the procedure is the numbing process. Healing time is significantly decreased. We recommend that children who have had the procedure avoid crunchy or acidic foods for a day or two.
Products such as Tylenol are all that is needed for pain control. There is no limit on activities after the procedure. Healing will be complete two weeks after the frenectomy is done. Keeping the area clean helps healing. Brush and floss carefully around the area. Your child’s pillowcase may have some blood staining the night of the procedure. Depending on the size of the frenectomy, most children describe it as a slight “pizza” type burn.
Pulpotomy (Nerve Removal)
When there is bacterial involvement of the pulp (nerve) chamber of your child's decayed tooth, it is sometimes necessary to surgically remove the nerve in the pulp chamber and place a medicated filling. After the medication has been placed in the pulp chamber of the tooth, the opening is filled with a permanent filling or covered with a crown.
The success of a pulpotomy depends on the severity of the infection and the body's reaction to the infection and subsequent treatment. If the pulpotomy is not performed, or fails and the tooth abscesses, it must usually be extracted and a space maintainer placed to hold the space for its permanent successor.
A tooth may abscess with or without pain; therefore it is recommended that regular six-month checkups be made in order to keep the teeth under constant observation.
Make an Appointment Today!
Thank you for choosing Commerce Park Children’s Dentistry & Orthodontics for your child’s general dental needs. Our Bridgeport, Shelton and Westport, Connecticut dentists and orthodontists are dedicated to providing the quality treatment your child deserves. If you are interested in any of the general treatment services described above, please fill out our appointment request form online to schedule your child’s next visit. For any questions regarding treatment options, feel free to contact us at 203-371-8282 for the Bridgeport & Westport offices, and 203-926-9929 for the Shelton office. We look forward to seeing both you and your child soon!