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Baby Teeth

Should You Have Your Dentist Remove Your Child's Baby Teeth?

March 13th, 2015

Most baby teeth, also known as primary or "milk" teeth, usually fall out on their very own. There are times, however, when having primary teeth removed by your dentist is not only necessary, but beneficial long term. On the other hand, there are times when one should not have baby teeth removed.
When patients come in for their complimentary examination, Dr. Varghese counts the remaining baby teeth left and how many permanent teeth are present. If our patients have more or less baby teeth for their age, Dr. V will examine the panoramic x-ray, which tells us how close we can be expecting to lose or not to lose the remaining primary teeth.
If the loss of "milk" teeth are slow but in the correct sequence, Dr. Varghese will generally not be concerned as this can be a variation from normal. Conversely, if the primary teeth are still not falling out after being monitored for some period of time, they can adversely affect the eruption path of the underlying permanent teeth.
In many cases, when an adult tooth, also known as a permanent tooth, is erupting behind a baby tooth that is not loose, Dr. Varghese will send an extraction letter to the general dentist to have that primary tooth extracted. Keep in mind that removing primary teeth does NOT prevent teeth from crowding.
In some cases, primary teeth must be removed by your general dentist for reasons such as trauma, infections and the like. When this happens, its important to maintain the spacing until the permanent tooth erupts properly in its path. A "space maintainer" is placed immediately to prevent the adjacent teeth from shifting into its place. If a "space maintainer" is not placed, you will be looking at a longer treatment time at a more costly expense down the road.
Occasionally, we see patients who still have their primary upper canines. The panoramic x-ray image will let Dr. Varghese know if we need to extract the baby canines in order to help the permanent canines erupt properly in its path before they get "stuck" in the roof of the mouth (palate). Unfortunately, once a canine is in the palate, the only way to bring it down is with a small surgical procedure from an oral surgeon, so we can slowly but surely bring the canine into proper alignment.

As you can see, baby teeth serve many important funtions in the development of the permanent or "adult" smile. Every child is unique and the decision to extract primary teeth or not is one that you and Dr. Varghese can make together.
Call our office for a complete and complimentary exam. Remember, age 7 is the optimal age to begin monitoring dental eruption for orthodontics.

Why Observation/Recall Appointments are So Important!

February 13th, 2015

Dr. Varghese and our team understand that parents' schedules get crazy busy with sports, band and many different kinds of after school activities and bringing your children to their orthodontic observation/recall check may be no easy task. For the majority of the time, these appointments are no longer than 10-15 minutes, and many wonder if they are necessary at all, but these appointments are crucial, to properly monitor your child's growth. Here at Varghese Orthodontics, these appointments are completely complimentary to you and your insurance provider.

Observation/recall visits are scheduled for those patients that have been not quite ready to begin orthodontic treatment or our patients' may be in between Phase I and Phase II of orthodontic treatment. Dr. Varghese monitors our patients' growth and dental eruption during these appointments, so when it's time for your child to begin treatment, they will receive the best care they need, when they need it. Dr. V looks at the overall skeletal formation, occlusion or bite and the remaining primary or baby teeth left, as well as any missing or extracted permanent teeth. During these appointments, we may take a panoramic x-ray to properly monitor dental development for future orthodontic treatment.
Dr. Varghese and our team believe in beginning orthodontic treatment for our patients when the time is right. We do not want our patients in treatment longer than they have to be. This may require waiting months or years until our patient's are dentally ready to begin any kind of orthodontic treatment.
Please call our office for your complimentary examination and meet our wonderful staff :)

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