Tough Decision

Sheena - posted on 02/02/2011 ( 9 moms have responded )

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My son has cavities in 4 of his front teeth they are his baby teeth and he's going to be 4yrs old this year, and I have to make the choice of whether to have them crowned or extracted, I'm not sure which choice to make, the dentist obviously is promoting having his teeth crowned as it'll make more money for him. The extractions are covered by my health insurance where as with the crowns it's not fully covered and i'll be paying $250 to have the work done. Which choice is better? Should I get the crowns on teeth that are going to fall out soonish anyways? or just have the teeth extracted? All the work is going to be done while my son is put to sleep for a while.

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Alison - posted on 02/02/2011

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The permanent teeth come in between the ages of 6 and 12! I would not want my child to be toothless for a few years. $250 seems like an affordable price to pay.

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Sheena - posted on 02/03/2011

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I'd like to thank everyone for the advice, I think we are going to get them crowned especially since the whole crooked teeth thing runs in our family, I have between now and June to come up with the $250 so I have lots of time :) I just hope the teeth don't get any worse between now and then, I brush his teeth regularly (even though it's a fight everytime I get the toothbrush out) but still the cavities keep showing up! guess we need to re-evaluate his diet or something

Kate CP - posted on 02/03/2011

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Keep his teeth! If you pull the teeth it could take years for the next ones to come in and they could shift by then making everything complicated. Not to mention it could effect his speech, too.

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If it was just one tooth.... I might go for the extraction, but w/ FOUR teeth.... definitely crowned. It could be 1-4 years before the new ones start to grow in and if they don't grow in properly..... you'll be spending a lot more on braces in the years to come.

Annamr1972 - posted on 02/03/2011

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Having the crowns done is not just cosmetic and to make money for the dentist. It also helps the new adult teeth to come in straight preventing braces... which really are expensive. Having said that... I'm not sure what I would do. $250 dollars is a hefty expense for something that will fall out in 2 or 3 years. You son will be in Kindergarten to maybe even second grade before they fall out. Will he be self conscious / embarrassed to attend school missing the 4 front teeth? Kids that age are in every stage of tooth growth so it may not be such a traumatic thing for him. My nephew had his front teeth knocked out as a toddler and he doesn't even care that he is missing them. He is 5 now I think. It depends on your feelings and your sons feelings. Best of luck deciding.

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Just giving you my opinion from personal experience. I lost my 2 front teeth when I was a baby, my brother left the door open and I fell down the stairs knocking them out. I was singing "All I Want for Christmas is My 2 Front Teeth" for YEARS!! They finally grew in when I was maybe 7 or 8 yrs old and they didn't come in properly. One of my eye teeth managed to wrap itself around my front tooth so it had to be pulled. So, I only have one front tooth, had to wear braces for years to pull my teeth together to close the gap. Needless to say that I'm a little self conscious about my teeth and smile now.
Sorry for the long winded story, my point is consider the crowns, baby teeth do lay the ground work for adult teeth. I wish this was an option when I was younger. *sigh* Good luck on your decision.

Sherri - posted on 02/02/2011

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Extract them would be my vote he most likely will be losing them within the next year or so anyways. If it was a molar I would definitely say crown.

Jennifer - posted on 02/02/2011

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I would definately do the crown. The baby teeth are what guide the adult teeth for comming in straight. If they are just pulled, then the adult teeth will more than likely be very crooked. When I was about 4 or 5 I hit my head on a table and knocked out my top two front teeth. My parents didn't have the money for the root canal, so I went 2 years without my 2 front teeth. The teasing was horrible, and my teeth grew in really crooked.

Amanda - posted on 02/02/2011

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You need to ask his dentist if the adult teeth are fully developed yet. If they are not CROWN his teeth, adult teeth that come up to early (due to teeth being pulled) are very weak. I would ask a lot more questions about your sons teeth. My oldest daugther had 8 teeth pulled a while ago (baby teeth that should of fallen out years ago), they left 2 teeth in because the adult teeth were not fully developed, they can see this information in a simple xray.

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