Young children start to get their baby teeth or primary teeth, as they are referred to, as early as 6 months of age. It takes almost 3 years for children to slowly get all the 20 teeth in their mouth to form a full set of primary dentition for the first few years of their life. These primary teeth are one of the most amazing and useful tools of nature as they help the child develop many functions during early childhood such as the teeth pattern, jaw shape, learning to chew properly, learning to speak and enunciate properly etc.
- Primary dentition is extremely important to save space for the permanent teeth that sprouts later on during the adolescence years
- Primary dentition in good form and shape allows for proper alignment and growth of permanent teeth without much chance for overcrowding or deformed teeth
- Primary dentition is key to learning masticatory skills in early childhood, which is crucial for proper nutrition and jaw formation as well
- Primary dentition is important for learning speech development skills and for proper enunciation from a very young age
- Primary dentition allows for proper shaping of the jaw bone and gives an overall pleasing and aesthetic structure and shape for the face
- Primary dentition in good form and shape helps boost a child's confidence and self esteem levels as per several research conducted
Given these essential and key reasons, it is clear that primary dentition has an important role to play in early childhood life and therefore should be treated with care. Any issues with primary dentition should be identified as early as possible and must be treated so that the original teeth can be preserved until they naturally exfoliate and the permanent teeth come in.
Most parents live in the myth that primary teeth are not as important as permanent teeth, but clearly, this is not the case. Primary teeth are as important to the life of a child as much are permanent teeth. The above points are only some of the important reasons why it is important to care for them. Today, early age caries is one of the predominant issues that affect children from a very young age. This can begin from the bottle or night feeding stage as the teeth are exposed to milk for long periods and therefore germ accumulation.
This can cause caries and cavities from a very young age. Primary teeth, unlike permanent teeth, are softer and more vulnerable to plaque buildup. The enamel of the teeth is much thinner and the core is more exposed in primary teeth than permanent teeth. This is why it is important to care for primary teeth from the very beginning by brushing twice and flossing regularly. Children often miss out on these hygiene aspects and fall prey to early tooth loss due to poor oral health. Frequent falls and accidents are other reasons for early tooth loss in children aside from oral health aspects. In all these scenarios, parents must bring their kids to the dentist immediately so that corrective measures can be taken to preserve the original tooth.
Dental Crowns for Children
Pediatric dental crowns are small, preformed crowns that are found in the market that are like tooth caps. They sit right on top of the original tooth once the dentist tends to the issues of the former, and helps preserve the top by cutting off any germ attack on the core of the tooth and regaining the functionality of the tooth. Dental crowns are available in a lot of variety in the market but the most common of them all are Stainless steel crowns.
Stainless steel tooth crowns are prefabricated and available as preformed crowns in the market. But there are custom crowns as well that can be made from many different crown materials such as porcelain, resin composite, ceramic and even zirconia crowns for pediatric patients. But even today, with all the innovations that are present in the market, stainless steel dental crowns are the most efficient and value for money. They are made with a steel alloy that almost mimics the natural structure of the tooth and can perform all the functions of primary tooth with ease.
Dental crowns help in preserving the affected original tooth by sitting right on top of them by cementing the crown on top of the tooth. A full face restoration such as the stainless steel crown tooth covers the entire tooth and cuts off any infection or germ attack on the core. It helps preserve the core and the rest of the natural tooth while still being strong enough to chew food and carry on with all the normal functions of primary teeth. Dental crowns are also an effective solution where a child may have a misshapen, discoloured or fractured tooth due to a fall or accident. In all such scenarios, the tooth is sawed down by the dentist and then fit using a prefabricated stainless steel crown in the exact shape and fit within minutes!
Pediatric Stainless Steel Crowns
Pediatric stainless steel crowns are the best solution to most pediatric dental issues. Even though there are many options in the market today, some of them more aesthetic than the stainless steel crowns itself, the latter has still remained the clear choice amongst dentists all over the world. Not only are stainless steel crowns more efficient than its aesthetic counterparts, they are also cheaper, more versatile, easily available and quicker to adjust to when it comes to kids.
Stainless steel crowns for adults are still being used although modern dental materials such as ceramics, porcelain and zirconia are now preferred by most patients. Stainless steel crowns are preferred for older adults who have low access to dental health and for those who do not cooperate well with dental procedures and have low oral and dental hygiene. Similar is the case with children, young kids do not cooperate with dental procedures and are more vulnerable to dental issues than adults. This is why stainless steel crowns for pediatric dentistry are popular.
Benefits of Stainless Steel Crowns for Pediatric Patients
As mentioned earlier, there are many benefits to using stainless steel crowns. Here are some of the most popular reasons for why stainless steel crowns are the most versatile crowns:
Made from stainless steel alloy consisting of chromium and nickel, these crowns are very strong and can have a high threshold for bite force and low sensitivity. They are excellent for posterior restorations and do not cause much wear on adjacent and opposing teeth. They are also a good choice for kids who are prone to bruxism or night grinding, although measures should be taken to minimise these effects on the crown.
They are extremely durable and can last well over 7 to 8 years. This is a good duration given the fact that children will outgrow the need for stainless steel crown restorations due to natural exfoliation as their permanent teeth come in. With good oral and dental hygiene, this duration can be increased to 10 years too. They do not wear out too fast and can adapt easily to the learning curve that children go through as they grow in their early age.
- Ease of access and adjustment time
Stainless steel crowns are available as preformed and prefabricated stainless steel crowns. These crowns are now available readily in the market and come in a lot of sizes and shapes from various different manufacturers with different qualities. As a parent, you can choose the best brand or functionality based on your child's needs and your dentist will be able to pick out the best crown size or shape that best fits the tooth. Post the procedure of removing decay and sawing down of the tooth, the dentist will fit the stainless steel crown on the original tooth using an adhesive such as dental cement and firmly plant the crown. With just a few adjustments to fit the crown and rubbing off the excess cement, the child is ready to go about their new crown and carry on all normal activities within a few days.
- Low chair side time
As mentioned above, due to the quick availability and the ease of adjusting the crown because of its large size and shape range, patients are quickly able to get their teeth restored and bounce back to their normal life. Unlike other dental materials, there is no need to take measurements and then get a temporary crown while your permanent crown is being prepared. Because of all these procedures, it can take well over 2 weeks to get your permanent crown and then too, you might need some adjustments, crimping and fitting done. Stainless steel crowns are easily fit with just a few adjustments which is perfect for young children who will not stay still for dental procedures.
The best part about these crowns is that they are super affordable. Stainless steel crowns cost anywhere between 30 and 100 USD based on the manufacturer and quality and any customisation that you may want to get done. These crowns cost only about 1/3rd of the cost of other materials and may well last 10 years whereas other crowns may need repeated adjustments and are prone to chipping or fractures (incase of porcelain and resin composite). Not only are these crowns affordable, they can also be fit within a single session and therefore reduces the time and money parents will need to spend on dental visits. Thanks to their durability and strength, it may very well be a one shot solution!
These are some of the benefits of stainless steel crowns that make them the most versatile dental crowns in the market!