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My young daughter is scared of the dentist

My 8 year old daughter is very nervous of the dentist and needs to have 2 baby teeth extracted. Initially we were referred for just 1 filling, but there was a long wait before we were seen that the dentist says that the tooth cannot now be saved, and one of the other teeth shows signs on the x-rays of deep decay. Some of her molar teeth also sadly have some signs of decay.
Intially the dentist said she could put a silver caps on these to save these baby teeth. As my daughter being really nervous (even just having x-rays), the dentist now is suggesting we don’t try capping the teeth at all, but refer to hospital to have 6 (yes six) of her baby teeth extracted. Two are to “balance” the mouth, and 2 rather than to cap them.
I’m really reluctant to do this, but feel I am being pushed into agreeing to it. I’d prefer to at least try putting the caps on, and extact the 2 unsaveable teeth. The dentist said she would use a sedation gas, (which would require a mask to be put onto my daughter’s mouth, which I think at 8 she will find really frightening) and then she could inject her gums to numb then.
My question is, would it not be possible to use a numbing gel on my daughter instead, to extract the 2 teeth?

Im sorry your daughter seems to be so decay prone at this stage .
If she is very nervous ( and even if she wasnt ) then you have to think what is best for her now , and what treatment will work for any length of time without simply failing very quickly .
At this stage I think that the metal caps are probably not a good idea , firstly getting it done might be difficult .The gas and air is a possibility , if she would tolerate that ( its used a lot for children ), but the teeth still need to be numbed with a traditional local anaesthetic for extractions /fillings and metal caps . numbing gel only numbs the gum where the needle goes in .
I cant see the teeth so this is only my opinion .
It may be best to take out at least the unsaveable teeh , and if your daughter is going to sleep to have those out , then your dentist may be right to include the other two , rather than attempting to carry out heroic dentistry, which is only a very short term fix ( or may prove to be impossible to get done )
For some nervous children this can be the kindest thing . Losing the baby teeth now should not cause any long term harm . Some adults report being traumatised by early childhood dental experiences .
However the main thing should be looking at preventive strategies to avoid future tooth decay , which Im sure your dentist will help you with

Answer provided by: Dr Jennifer Pinder Retired
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