Treatment Options

Treatments

St Croix Kidds Pediatric Dentistry has provided personalized dental care to thousands of families. Our patients come from near and far to experience the warm, individualized care we provide. We pride ourselves in utilizing the most modern equipment and methods available.

In order to provide nothing but the best to our patients, our office uses state-of-the-art technologies in all our procedures. These new technologies allow us to detect dental concerns at early stages, treat your dental issues with precision, and provide stunning and customized restorations. Our premium dental software system maximizes your time and our office efficiency. When you visit our office you can be confident that you are receiving the finest and most advanced in dental care.

Nitrous Oxide

We utilize nitrous oxide, better known as laughing gas, for most of our treatment procedures. It’s the preferred sedation method for pediatric dentists because it’s safe, the effects are almost instantaneous, and it only takes a few seconds to clear out of their systems once the treatment is over. Nitrous oxide does not put a child to sleep, it just helps them remain calm and still so that we can safely complete treatment. It is well tolerated by children, and the most common side effect is mild nausea that subsides as soon as it is turned off. 

Tooth Colored Fillings


Tooth colored fillings (composite or glass ionomer resins) are used to restore front or back teeth or where cosmetic appearance is important. Tooth colored fillings are used to repair fractured teeth and/or areas of decay. The shade of the restorative material is matched as closely as possible to the color of the natural teeth

Nerve Treatments

Pulpotomy “baby root canal” 
When a cavity has become very large it often will penetrate through the tooth structure to the pulp or living tissue of the tooth.  When the decay has reached the dental pulp, this area is generally still alive but the outer areas of the pulp are infected with the bacteria that caused the cavity.  If the pulp is not treated and the infected areas are not removed, the bacteria will continue to cause infection and can migrate into the root canals. If this occurs, the tooth will become abscessed and painful requiring early removal of the tooth.
To prevent the tooth from abscessing and to relieve any discomfort we can perform a pulpotomy.  We often refer to this as a “baby root canal” However, this is not as complicated or difficult of a procedure as a root canal on a permanent tooth.  To perform a pulpotomy we remove the cavity and access the pulp chamber in the crown of the tooth, remove the diseased pulp, then place a medication in this area before restoring the tooth with a stainless steel crown.

Extractions

Good oral hygiene should always be practiced since the loss of a single tooth can have major impact upon your oral health and appearance. Although dentists will use every measure to prevent tooth loss, there are still some occasions when a tooth may need to be extracted. A tooth may need to be extracted if the following occurs:

  • Severe decay
  • Advanced periodontal disease
  • Infection or abscess
  • Orthodontic correction
  • Malpositioned teeth
  • Fractured teeth or roots

Space Maintainers

One of a baby tooth’s most important jobs is holding the place for permanent teeth until they erupt. If a primary molar tooth is lost prematurely the other teeth around it can drift together and cause crowding. To keep this crowding from occurring a space maintainer can be used whenever a back primary tooth is lost early. The procedure for making and placing a space maintainer generally takes two appointments. At the first appointment an impression is taken. This is sent to a lab where the space maintainer is made. At the second appointment the space maintainer is tried in and any adjustments are made, if needed. It is then cemented in place. The space maintainer will remain until the back permanent teeth begin to erupt at which time it is easily removed. While wearing a space maintainer it is important to avoid sticky candy or chewing gum.

Impacted Teeth

After careful examination and treatment, the dentist may advise to have a tooth extracted. Before a tooth is removed, the dentist will take an x-ray in order to understand the shape and position of the tooth and surrounding bone. Based on the degree of difficulty, we may refer you to a specialist called an oral surgeon. 
A certain amount of pain and discomfort is to be expected following an extraction, which can be minimized with a pain killer and ice packs applied to the face for 15 minutes at a time. After a routine extraction, discomfort should lessen within three days to two weeks. If you have prolonged or severe pain, swelling, bleeding or fever, call our office immediately.

Frenectomy

A frenectomy is a procedure that releases the frenum from its attachment, allowing for proper tooth alignment and full range of motion for the tongue.This procedure can be both preventive and corrective. The treatment can correct an infant’s inability to breastfeed, reduce a mother’s breast pain and also prevent later issues such as palatal development, tooth spacing, and dental caries. The procedure can also prevent issues with speech, swallowing, and gum disease. If detected before a child’s permanent teeth erupt, a frenectomy can prevent frontal gaps that might require orthodontics if left untreated
. Traditional surgery with a scalpel or scissors can bruise or crush tissue. When we use the LightScalpel CO2 laser, only an intense beam of laser light interacts with the tissue. There is no mechanical trauma to the tissue. 
The CO2 laser has the unique ability to vaporize or ‘erase’ tissue. The CO2 laser can be used to make incisions, as well as to remove unhealthy tissue. The CO2 laser is so precise that we can selectively remove only a few cells at a time, if needed.


Advantages of the CO2 Laser:

  • Minimized Bleeding: As it vaporizes the tissue, the LightScalpel laser seals small blood vessels. This great reduction in bleeding makes surgical procedures quick and easy. In most cases, no sutures are required.
  • 
Less Swelling and Discomfort: The CO2 laser beam seals lymphatics, resulting in less postoperative swelling and discomfort associated with traditional scalpel surgery.
  • 
Reduced risk of Infection: Sanitizing effect of the laser reduces the risk of infection and means faster healing.
  • Shortened Surgery Time: The hemostatic effect of the laser beam results in the improved visibility of the surgical field. The dentist and the team do not have to spend much time trying to control bleeding. As a result, the duration of the procedure is reduced.
  • 
Faster Recovery: Reduced trauma, minimized bleeding, pain and swelling, and shorter periods of anesthesia means you can go back to work or school the same day, in most cases.

  • Post Operatively:
 Within the first 72 hours avoid any spicy and acidic foods; stick to cold foods such as ice cream to alleviate discomfort.
 Drink plenty of cool water to counteract drying of the tissue from the laser.
 The ability to eat normally will return in about 2-3 days. 
Discomfort levels should be minimal but can be relieved with Advil or Tylenol
. Talk to your dentist about oral stretching exercises to prevent the return of symptoms or a premature reattachment of the frenum.

Stem Save

Stem Save stem cell banking offers you and your family a unique stem cell recovery and cryopreservation service, in the event of future injury or disease. The National Institutes of Health recently discovered a powerful class of adult stem cells in teeth. Baby teeth, wisdom teeth and permanent teeth that are extracted are rich sources for these stem cells.

Stainless Steel Crown

Dental caries that have extended in a larger portion of the tooth structure and cannot be restored with tooth colored fillings will require a stainless steel crown. The tooth can be prepared and the crown cemented in a single appointment. It is sufficiently durable to last until the primary tooth exfoliates. The stainless steel crown is placed following a pulpotomy since a good portion of the crown is lost during this procedure.

General Anesthesia

We always prefer to complete dental procedures in the least invasive manner possible. Most children are able to complete treatment with nitrous oxide and local anesthetic, but some patients require general anesthesia. These patients are typically either very young, have special needs, or have extreme dental anxiety. We offer outpatient hospital sedation at Minnesota Children’s Hospital in St. Paul, Minneapolis and Minnetonka. We also offer in office general anesthesia with a dental anesthesiologist that occurs in our office in Hudson or Blaine. If your child requires general anesthesia to complete dental treatment, the dentist will discuss your options with you, and our staff will help you schedule and coordinate the procedure.

A deposit will be required prior to scheduling the procedure, and it will apply to your balance. To find out more about our sedation services, you can call us or stop by and ask to speak with our hospital Coordinator.