Your child’s teeth are crucial for their overall health and well-being. As adults, we know when something is wrong and when we need to make an appointment with the dentist. Our kids, however, may not.
Developing a solid foundation for your child’s future oral health is important. Which is why checking their teeth regularly and addressing any complaints or concerns should be part of your routine. Knowing what to look for can help address any problems before they get worse.
Molar Cavities: What to Look For
Discoloration is common on molars with cavities. A tooth with a cavity will begin to get a dark coloring around the tooth. Then on the biting surface of the tooth, the grooves will begin to discolor in a shade of black. As your child opens his or her mouth, you can see the surface of the molar on the bottom and should be able to notice whether there is any discoloration. However, the top molars are much more difficult to see. Sometimes having your child lay down with head tilted can provide a better angle.
Cavities do form between the molars. They, too, will discolor. Unfortunately, this is not something you can often see by just looking at the teeth. Rather, an x-ray is a more common way of uncovering the cavity.
Noticing any holes in your child’s tooth is a very big sign that your child may have a cavity. It may be a very small hole and it may come with cracks, too. Regardless of its size, it is important to have it addressed. Every large cavity starts out as a tiny pinhole – so always be on the lookout.
Pay Attention For These Other Signs
While you may easily look at your child’s teeth and see if they are discolored or not, that is not the only indication that a cavity may be present. Here are a few more signs of cavities that you may want to pay attention for.
Toothaches. There are many reasons for toothaches. But, if your child is suddenly complaining about a toothache, ask about where the pain is and take a look at the teeth in that general area.
Painful or Difficult to Eat. Pain while chewing can be an indicator of a cavity, among other things. If your young toddler is not eating like normal, look at their teeth. If your child is older, ask about why it hurts to eat, where it hurts, and so forth. Then examine the teeth.
Tooth Sensitivity. If your child will eat a piece of an apple, but then refuses to eat cold yogurt or a popsicle, this could signal that there may be a sensitivity issue going on. Again, try to find out where it is hurting and have a look.
Discuss Your Cavity Concerns with Dental Buddies
At Dental Buddies, we work to help instill good oral hygiene habits in kids – and look to you to keep them going at home. Visiting the dentist regularly can further encourage your child to brush his or her teeth. But when signs of a cavity arise, it is time for us to take action.