Serving Little Smiles
At Tuttle Family Dentistry, our mission is to provide excellent dental care for the entire family while building long-term relationships with our patients and community. Our priority is to give our patients the confidence to smile and to diffuse any dental anxieties they may have. We want to make patients feel comfortable, safe, and well-taken care of from the moment they step through our doors. Our office is proud to serve the Colorado Springs!
Tongue and lip ties or “Tethered Oral Tissues” (TOTs) affect many children. In this condition, the frenulum (band of tissue) connecting the tongue to the base of the mouth or the lips to the gums is over-developed and thick. Tongue and lip ties can impair proper breastfeeding, contribute to a bad swallow, and cause speech impediments later in life. Proper treatment is necessary for serious cases of tongue and lip ties.
In a frenectomy, Dr. Tuttle will release the thick band of tissue attaching your child’s tongue to the bottom of the mouth, or attaching the gums to the lips. This frees up your child’s lips or tongue, providing them with the proper range of motion. The treatment is fast, minimally-invasive, and provides long-lasting results.
Space maintainers are small plastic or metal devices that are placed into the gap where your child has lost a baby tooth. They are comfortable and your child won’t even notice the space maintainer after a while.
The purpose of a space maintainer is to stop the surrounding teeth from shifting toward the gap where their baby tooth used to be. If the teeth shift, this can block the adult tooth from erupting properly, which can lead to serious oral development issues.
With a space maintainer you can keep your child’s mouth healthy and ensure it continues to develop properly, preventing complications that may require expensive orthodontic work.
Pulpotomies are also called “baby root canals.” Unlike a root canal, which involves removing all of the pulp from an infected tooth, pulpotomies remove only some of the pulp inside the tooth. Then, a healing dressing is applied to the inside of the tooth to protect and stimulate the growth of the pulp to keep it healthy.
This type of treatment is used for baby teeth because it’s a good idea to preserve the baby tooth whenever possible, even if it’s infected. This is because baby teeth form the “paths” that the adult teeth follow when they erupt.
If a pulpotomy is not a good option, Dr. Tuttle may recommend extracting your child’s baby tooth and applying a space maintainer, but we always try to save your child’s tooth whenever possible.