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Palos Pediatric Dentistry

Kids and Cavities: Silver Diamine Fluoride to the Rescue!

November 15, 2021
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Posted By: Palos Pediatric Dentistry

Your child's growing smile is precious, and our pediatric dentist Dr. Richard Facko can help your little one keep their teeth healthy. At Palos Pediatric Dentistry, we use Silver Diamine Fluoride (SDF) to treat hypersensitivity, tooth decay, and cavities in children. 

What Is SDF?

Silver Diamine Fluoride is an FDA-approved antibiotic liquid used to control and prevent dental caries. This noninvasive method is an alternative to removing decay and filling a cavity in young children with baby teeth. 

How Does SDF Work?

SDF's antibacterial properties slow or stop tooth decay from progressing. Fluoride increases saliva production, which neutralizes bacteria and reduces the spread of decay. SDF also hardens the tooth's structure and builds up the enamel's resistance to cavity-causing acids. 

What Does the SDF Process Entail?

The SDF process is quick and painless, and Dr. Facko always makes sure each young patient feels comfortable and relaxed before the treatment. 

#1 Cleaning the Area

Dr. Facko starts by gently cleaning the affected area, which may include removing plaque or food debris. 

#2 Isolating the Area 

SDF can stain the skin, so Dr. Facko applies a protective coating of petroleum jelly or cocoa butter to the lips. He then isolates the treatment area so he can effectively use the SDF. 

#3 Applying the SDF 

Dr. Facko dries the tooth and applies the SDF using a microbrush, which looks a lot like a tiny paintbrush. He dips the brush into the solution and carefully paints it onto the affected area, just like an artist meticulously paints a portrait. To set the SDF, he applies gentle airflow until the SDF dries. Finally, Dr. Facko covers the tooth with a fluoride varnish which acts as a topcoat and seals the SDF.

Is SDF Safe?

SDF is clinically proven as a safe method of preventing and controlling dental decay in children. We mainly use SDF for children on primary teeth at our Palos Height dental office as SDF can turn decayed spots dark or black. Usually, we apply SDF on back teeth, so the spots are not visible, but these stains are permanent. 

However, if SDF is applied to a temporary tooth, the permanent tooth that replaces it will not be stained or blemished. If your child's teeth have SDF stains, we can easily cover them with a white filling or other cosmetic treatment. 

Protect Your Child's Smile with SDF

Does your child have a cavity that needs some TLC? Please don't hesitate to call us today!

We are here to help your little one have a healthier, happier smile for life. 

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