Halloween is one of the happiest times of the year for kids. But when your child chips their tooth while biting into hard candy, the holiday can quickly become a nightmare. A cosmetic dentist can repair your child's tooth with tooth bonding. The technique is quick and doesn't require the dentist to inject any type of anesthetic or medicine to numb your child's mouth. Here's how tooth bonding works and what you can do next Halloween to protect your child's teeth from damage.
What's Tooth Bonding?
Tooth bonding is a cosmetic treatment that repairs chipped, crooked and stained teeth. The treatment requires the dentist to place or bond a tooth-colored material called composite resin onto your loved one's chipped tooth. The dentist hardens the material with a special light or laser that won't burn or hurt your child's mouth. But if your child fears the treatment, the dentist can apply a mild pain ointment over their gums to alleviate their fears.
Depending on the severity of your child's chipped tooth, the dentist may need to roughen up a small amount of enamel to help the material bond to the tooth. However, the dentist will discuss this step with you in greater detail during your initial visit.
Bonded teeth usually last three to 10 years with the proper care. To keep your child's bonded tooth healthy, don't serve your child hard or overly crunchy foods, such as nuts and granola bars. The sticky or hard textures can pull off or fracture the composite material. If the bonding comes off or cracks, it exposes your child's tooth to decay and bacteria.
Because tooth-colored materials can stain from eating or drinking darkly-colored food and liquids, you should serve your child lightly-colored foods and beverages, such as celery, pears and unsweetened apple juice.
How Can You Protect Your Child's Teeth Next Halloween?
It's a good idea that you check the texture of the candy your child receives from trick-or-treating before they bite into it. If the candy is too hard or crunchy, change it out for something softer, such as chocolate or gum.
If your child's bonded tooth appears loose or stained, schedule an appointment with the dentist right away. Remember, the tooth beneath the composite resin is still vulnerable to tooth decay. If you haven't done so already, invest in a water flosser for your child. The flosser uses water to clean teeth instead of traditional floss thread. Floss thread can snag the sides of the bonded tooth and pull if off.