TREATING TOOTH DECAY: How to Make the Best Restorative Choices for Children’s Health

An ideal restoration for a child provides strong function, protection from future decay, improved appearance and freedom from pain.

A less-than-ideal treatment choice often leads to failure of the restoration and re-treatment of the tooth several times over its lifetime, resulting in additional cost, time, and inconvenience for the family.

It can also lead to infection and severe pain for the patient. Larger cavities – often associated with broken-down teeth and infection into the nerve of a tooth – require the strength and protection of a crown. 

Because large cavities present greater risk of pain, tooth loss, and serious infection, crowns represent cost savings by covering tooth surfaces prone to future cavities in children at high risk for tooth decay. 

Based on numerous studies proving their durability, stainless steel crowns are the restoration of choice where there is extensive decay in primary teeth. They can prolong the life of a tooth when re-treatment would require sedation or general anesthesia, with its attendant risks and expense. 

To support better oral health for children, policy makers and insurers should develop coverage criteria, treatment authorizations and related policies based on sound clinical recommendations such as those found in the Reference Manual of Pediatric Dentistry published by the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD).

Dental insurance policies and regulations must serve the best interests of the individual child and ensure that benefit coverage supports the future oral and overall health of children. 

Since children in the Medicaid program have a higher rate of oral disease, a higher restoration replacement rate should be expected in this population compared to privately insured patients. 

Tooth decay, the most common chronic disease of childhood, can hurt a child’s health and quality of life. It is preventable with the help of regular dental visits starting early in life and a sound program of oral health care at home. 

No comments:

| Distributed By JOJO Themes