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Why Won’t Pediatric Dentist Treat Kids Teeth with Turmeric?

By February 13, 2018July 23rd, 2018Pediatric Dentist

My kids and I love their pediatric dentist. Teghan, our 5-year-old daughter, has beginning stages of a cavity. We brush her teeth twice a day and floss daily, but she still is developing a cavity. Our kids can have one sugary snack on the weekend, so that’s not the cause either.

We think that Teghan might be eating sweets at school. Regardless, something has to be done about the cavity. I prefer natural treatment. So I’ve done a lot of research online to find out what can work. Turmeric works well for tooth decay, but I am having trouble convincing our pediatric dentist to use it on my daughter’s filling. Her dentist is aware of the benefits of turmeric, but she won’t fill the tooth with it.

Although I don’t want to switch dentists, if I can find a holistic pediatric dentist who will work with me and fill the tooth as I’m requesting, that would be great. What are my chances of finding a pediatric dentist who will use turmeric for fillings? Thanks. Felicity


The primary ingredient in turmeric is curcumin. It is said to have many health benefits. But turmeric has not been approved for use in pediatric dentistry, or any other branch of dentistry, so it’s unlikely that you can find a pediatric dentist who will use it for fillings.

Turmeric and Dentistry

Studies show that turmeric has anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial value. Clinical trials are being conducted to determine the medical and dental benefits of the spice.

One 2017 article in the International Journal of Clinical Pediatric Dentistry published a study is entitled, Clinical and Radiological Evaluation of Turmeric Powder as a Pulpotomy Medicament in Primary Teeth: An in vivo Study. The study can be found online on the website of the U.S. National Library of Medicine – National Institutes of Health.

Turmeric for Pulpotomy in Primary Teeth – An Overview

  • Pulpotomy is used to preserve primary teeth. It’s important to save primary teeth instead of extracting them because they maintain spacing between teeth and help permanent teeth erupt correctly.
  • 50 children who had dental cavities were included in the study. Their ages were between 4 and 9.
  • 15 out of 50 were selected. After tooth decay was removed, teeth were filled with a mixture of turmeric powder, distilled water, and radiolucent material.
  • Follow-up appointments were scheduled three weeks, two months, four months, and six months after the turmeric fillings were placed.
  • Treatment was considered successful if the following conditions were observed:
    • A tooth was free of decay.
    • No pain was felt when pressure or movement was applied to a tooth.
    • There was no tenderness in the tooth.

What were the results?

After six months, only one of the fifteen patients reported pain in a tooth that had a turmeric filling. There were no issues in the teeth with tenderness, mobility, and sinus/fistula.

Although this study was successful, more clinical trials are needed to prove the effectiveness of using turmeric in dentistry for children.

Your Pediatric Dentist Is Taking Preventive Action

You have a good routine for taking care of your daughter’s teeth. Keep it up. If your pediatric dentist is recommending a filling or a pulpotomy, her intent is to save your daughter’s primary teeth so they will guide the permanent teeth.

The post is sponsored by Dr. Anthony LaVacca and the pediatric dentists at Naperville Dental Specialists.

Dr. Anthony LaVacca

Author Dr. Anthony LaVacca

More posts by Dr. Anthony LaVacca

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