Silver Diamine Fluoride (SDF) is an antimicrobial liquid that is used for hypersensitivity, dental decay, and cavities. It is brushed directly on the cavity to stop decay. It is a painless procedure and can be a good treatment option for cavities if your child is young or has special needs, as SDF can help delay more extensive procedures such as drilling or sedation. Think of it as a band-aid solution, as it will not be a permanent solution to the cavity, but can buy the patient more time and keep the decay from worsening until the child is old enough for treatment to be more successful, or the baby tooth falls out.
One downside to SDF is that it blackens the decayed part of the tooth, leaving it discolored. Because SDF is not a permanent solution, the tooth will still need to be monitored by your dentist to make sure that the cavity is not growing. But, if the cavity is on a baby tooth that will eventually fall out, or if the tooth is in the back of the mouth that’s hard to see, SDF might be a good option.
White fillings and crowns can sometimes be placed over teeth that were treated with SDF to make them more stable and more esthetic.