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Restorative Dental Treatment Options for Kids - Large Cavities


Silver Cap's Stainless Steel Crowns (SSC)

Stainless Steel Crowns (SSC) is a preformed, durable, full-coverage dental restoration for baby teeth and young permanent teeth. It is used when cavities on the teeth are so large that restoring by a filling is not possible. Unlike an adult crown, the procedure is considered as part of the basic restoration (not as prosthetic/ advanced restoration in the case of adult custom-made crowns, so it should be covered by your dental insurance under basic coverage). The procedure requires just one dental appointment to complete.

Silver Cap stainless steel crowns
Stainless steel crown
White Cap stainless steel crowns
Tooth coloured stainless steel crown

Advantages of silver cap for kids:

  • Strengthens teeth with defects or large cavities where the teeth are likely to fracture or fillings are likely to fail.
  • Covers the tooth entirely and prevents future decay on the same tooth.
  • Prevents tooth wear, especially if your child has a tooth grinding habit.

Disadvantages of silver cap for kids:

  • Colour may not be as esthetically pleasing as other filling materials.

Why do you have to crown baby teeth? Don't they fall out anyways?

Why do you have to crown baby teeth?
Can you just do a filling on a baby tooth?

Left: when a cavity is very large, a crown (stainless steel crown or tooth coloured stainless steel crown) is a more appropriate choice than a filling.

Right: An extensive filling does not hold the tooth structure together and it may fail. This is an example of a failed filling; part of the tooth has fractured as the integrity of tooth is compromised by the large cavity. The more appropriate restoration in this case would have been a stainless steel crown. Unfortunately this tooth has to be extracted.

Tooth-Coloured Composite Crowns

Tooth-Coloured Composite Crowns - is a full coverage restoration for baby front teeth and young permanent teeth. It's made up of the same material as a white filling. It is used when the cavities on the teeth are so large that filling restoration is not possible because there is lack of tooth structure to support the filling. Unlike an adult crown, the procedure is considered as part of the basic restoration (not as prosthetic/ advanced restoration in the case of adult custom-made crowns, so it should be covered by your dental insurance under basic coverage). The procedure requires just one appointment to complete.

White cap for baby front teeth
Before restoration
Composite crowns for front teeth
After tooth coloured composite crowns

Advantages of white cap for kids:

  • Esthetically pleasing.
  • Covers the tooth entirely and prevents future decay on the same tooth.

Disadvantages of white cap for kids:

  • May be stained by food and may become discoloured over time if meticulous oral hygiene can't be maintained.
  • Composite crown can tolerate normal biting forces. However, materials that make up the crown is brittle in nature and can chip off if the child use his/her teeth forcefully (for instance, grinding teeth, chewing toys or opening plastics bags with teeth).