Using rubber dams on children | Dental Treatment Guide

Rubber dams are a dental device that has been around for well over 100 years. Although they have been around for a long time, proving their success, they now lack popularity in the UK dental clinic with just 1.4% of them actually using them routinely.

What is a rubber dam?

The rubber dam is composed or latex or silicone and it is employed in dentistry to isolate certain teeth to work on during a procedure. It is used in dental treatments on both adults and children to prevent contamination and moisture from entering the area being worked on.

Advantages of rubber dams

There are numerous benefits associated with the use of rubber dams in paediatric dentistry. Primarily, they protect the child's airways. They also act as a method of keep the mouth contamination free throughout the procedure, which minimises the chances of infections being obtained. Not only this but the rubber dams can act by protecting the mouth from any accidental damage during the oral treatment. Finally, the dams are also comfortable to wear, which is an important factor in trying to minimise any anxiety felt by the child, as this is a common problem.

Disadvantages of rubber dams

There are few disadvantages associated with rubber dams. However, latex allergies are quite common and so it is possible to have an allergic reaction. If you are aware that your child may have an allergy to latex, then inform your dentist so they can use the silicone version of the dam instead.

The other main disadvantage of the rubber dam is that it can be quite daunting and may make the child feel anxious. This limits the ages at which the rubber dam is appropriate for use. It is important that dental experiences are kept as positive and pleasant as possible with young children so they do not develop future fears and phobias of the dentist.

Further Information Childrens Dental Treatments