Dental Tips Blog

Jul
12

Is Your Child Ready to Floss?

Now that your little one has teeth, you’re wondering if it’s time to introduce flossing to him or her.

Here are a couple ways to know whether your child is ready to start cleaning between in addition to brushing:

When the Teeth Are Touching

Flossing removes food particles trapped between teeth. It also disrupts bacterial growth on the surfaces between teeth where a toothbrush can’t reach. As soon as teeth grow together so that they block out the space between them, they need to be flossed daily.

Early baby teeth don’t usually need flossing. This is because they come in with lots of space to spare. A gentle once-over with a soft toothbrush or clean cloth is enough to wick away plaque from all surfaces.

But by the time your toddler has a full dentition of twenty teeth, they may be cramped for space.

Take a good look at your child’s mouth and see whether any teeth are touching each other. Those are ones that need flossing. You should floss the teeth yourself until your child is old enough to do it herself or himself.

As Much as Your Child Tolerates

The earlier you introduce activities like brushing and flossing, the more likely your child is to tolerate them. Flossing can be tougher than brushing since it’s a more meticulous and time-consuming job.

Take things slow starting out. Don’t force a toddler to sit still while you floss all twenty teeth. Do as much as your child will happily tolerate and praise him or her for their patience and effort. Keep flossing a positive activity and emphasize the health benefits.

Talk with your child’s dentist for more tips on safe and effective flossing for kids.

Posted on behalf of:
Buford Family Dental
4700 Nelson Grogdon Blvd. NE #210
Buford, GA 30518
678.730.2005

Jan
10

Baby’s First Birthday? Time for a First Dental Visit, Too!

According to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, kids should come in for their first pediatric dental exam by the time they are only one year of age. If your baby gets his or her first tooth before then, plan the appointment even sooner.

What’s the hurry here?

Educating Mom And Dad

Most parents aren’t aware that their responsibility in caring for baby’s smile starts well before the first tooth arrives. Your dentist will give you suggestions for an age-appropriate oral cleaning routine for your child.

Setting Healthy Habits

If you wait until your child is five or six years old with a throbbing toothache to bring them into a dental office, you’re only setting them up for pain and anxiety. It’s so much better if your son or daughter is already comfortable in the dental chair! This will help them relax and cooperate if more serious treatment is needed.

By bringing your child in as an infant, they get used to having a dentist examine their mouth. Not to mention, they’ll also get the chance to be comfortable around dental equipment.

Stay A Step Ahead Of Dental Problems

Many oral issues can be traced back to problems with tooth development in infants. For example, thumb-sucking can lead to poor tooth alignment. That, in turn, can increase the risk of your child developing gum disease and decay when he or she gets older.

Getting into a routine of regular dental visits now is one of the best ways you can guarantee a healthy future for your son or daughter. Contact your local dental office today to schedule.

Posted on behalf of:
Court Square Dentistry
24-24 Jackson Ave
Long Island City, NY 11101
917-832-1022

Dec
31

Why A Dental Crown May Be Your Child’s Best Option

Tooth decay is just as serious for kids as it is for adults. If not more so. A cavity in a baby tooth isn’t something you can afford to ignore just because “that tooth will fall out, anyway.”

Cavities spread rapidly in children’s mouths. Kids aren’t great about keeping their teeth clean, but baby teeth have thin enamel. Decay can quickly reach the pulp where it can develop a life-threatening abscess.

Sometimes, a crown is the only treatment option.

Can’t You Pull the Tooth?

Occasionally. But that will depend on your child’s tooth development. Each baby tooth acts as a placeholder for an adult one that’s yet to come. If that tiny placeholder is lost too soon, other teeth can drift and fill the gap, causing crowding once the grown-up one comes in.

Pulling a tooth and putting in a spacer is usually a last-resort option.

What About a Filling?

Getting a filling while the cavity is still small is always the preferred route from the outset. But as mentioned before, baby teeth have very thin enamel layers compared to adult ones. It doesn’t take long for a cavity to reach a critical stage. Trying to fill the tooth could result in more damage and pain to your child.

Why Crown A Baby Tooth

Most decayed baby teeth are capped with stainless steel crowns. The benefits to doing so include:

  • Economical
  • Long-lasting
  • Little to no sensitivity
  • More complete protection for the tooth than a filling

When options get limited, a dental crown really does become the best restorative solution for many kids. Of course, it’s best to avoid decay in the first place, so talk with your child’s dentist about preventative treatment and age-appropriate oral hygiene methods.

Posted on behalf of:
Bayshore Dental Center
810 W Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd #2900
Seffner, FL 33584
(813) 330-2006

Dec
5

No Juice for Kids Under Age 1, American Academy of Pediatrics Recommends

Over the past 15 years, the American Academy of Pediatrics has given the okay for babies to start having juice by the age of six months.

That recommendation changed just this month.

According to the new guidelines, parents should not introduce fruit juice to their kids until they are past the age of 1.

What’s behind this latest change?

Protect Baby Smiles!

Worry over the high obesity rate in America has prompted a fresh look at how much juice our kids are drinking.

But there is another more sinister concern.

While fruit juice is a sweet treat and some fortified varieties offer vitamins, there is no actual need for babies between 6-12 months to drink juice. They get all essential nutrients from the breastmilk or formula they consume. If more fluid is necessary, plain water is perfect.

Many parents have gotten their babies into a tooth-harming habit of sucking down fruit juice in a sippy cup or bottle all day long. Sure, it keeps the kid quiet for a while, but the steady exposure to all that sugar can cause permanent damage to both baby and later, the adult teeth.

With this in mind, experts now recommend that you keep your child in the habit of reaching for water when they’re thirsty. Ideally, they’ll continue to make the wise choice as they get older!

Invest in Your Child’s Smile

You can ensure a lifelong healthy smile for your child by taking a few preventative measures. Cut back on sources of sugar in your child’s diet (like fruit juice). Encourage good oral hygiene and take your child to your pediatric dentist at least twice a year for a cleaning and checkup.

Posted on behalf of:
Pleasant Plains Dental
5850 W Hwy 74 #135
Indian Trail, NC 28079
(704) 815-5513

Nov
29

Why Your Child May Have Stained Teeth

Primary (baby) teeth are known for having a naturally white color. Even as adult teeth start to come in, baby teeth often make the permanent teeth look “yellow” because of how bright the youthful enamel is. But if you’ve started to spot some discoloration or staining on your child’s teeth, it might be due to some of the following reasons:

Swimmer’s Stain

Are you visiting the pool frequently? Chlorinated pools can cause some people to get granular stain deposits across the front of their teeth. This is usually more common in kids who participate in swim team, or triathletes who are swimming laps multiple times a week.  

Vitamins, Milk, or Supplements

Taking vitamins and supplements may be something your pediatrician has recommended. Some children, for reasons unknown, tend to get what is called “black line stain” from their vitamins or even daily milk intake. Fortunately, this stain is superficial and can be cleaned away during your child’s dental visit. 

Atypical Development

Internal tooth staining and discoloration can come from a variety of sources. Some include the mother having a severe fever or illness during pregnancy, the child being very sick or feverish at a young age, antibiotic use during toddler years, or well water that has elevated mineral levels that have not been filtered out. It could also be due to an accident/trauma that is causing the tooth to die.

Take your child to your family or kids dentist at least twice a year. Because baby teeth decay quickly, these routine visits can ensure that everything stays as healthy as possible, for as long as possible.

Posted on behalf of:
Dunwoody Family & Cosmetic Dentistry
1816 Independence Square, Suite B
Dunwoody, GA 30338
(770) 399-9199

Nov
12

Reasons to Take Your Two-Year-Old to the Dentist

Surviving the “Terrible Twos” is something every parent of a toddler understands. Just getting out the door in the morning without a meltdown is considered a success. While there are a lot of things your two-year-old might not like doing, going to the dentist shouldn’t be one of them. Here are a few reasons why dental visits shouldn’t be skipped at such a young age.

To Talk About Any Habits

Thumb sucking, pacifier use, or sippy cups should all be a think of the past. If they’re still an everyday occurrence, it could alter how your child’s adult teeth erupt (or even their speech.) Your dentist can help you stop the habits early, by sharing what techniques work best. 

Screening for Cavities to Prevent Unwanted Infections Later 

Baby teeth can get decay very quickly. At two years of age, your toddler will be getting their “two year molars.” It’s important to have all the teeth examined so that cavities can be treated when they’re very small. Otherwise it can spread very quickly and possibly even result in a trip to the hospital. 

Getting to Experience the Dental Office in a Positive Light 

Some parents wait to bring their child to the dentist until there’s a problem. When that happens, children associate dental care with pain and discomfort. Instead, it’s better to take a preventive approach and help your child keep their teeth healthy before an issue pops up.

Most pediatricians and kids dentists agree that children should see a dentist by their first birthday. Don’t let the Twos catch up with you! Call your family dentist to schedule a visit.

Posted on behalf of:
Three Creek Dentistry
7236 Muncaster Mill Rd.
Derwood MD 20855
240-256-3258

Oct
8

Benefits of Early Dental Care for Kids

Many parents make the mistake of putting off dental treatment until their child has a serious problem in their mouth.

Why does your pediatric dentist want to see your child as soon as possible? Consider a few ways early dental care is good for kids…

Treat Problems While Small

Trying to repair a mouth full of cavities is hard on everyone – the dentist, your child, and you. It’s much easier to just get a simple filling when it’s recommended in the first place. You’ll get a good idea of what your child needs by bringing them in for a dental visit as soon as possible.

Avoid Problems Altogether

Kids’ smiles are clean slates. Keep their teeth strong and healthy, and your children may never have to get a dental crown or tooth extraction. Preventative dental care is easier on young smiles as well as on your wallet.

Track Smile Development

No two kids’ smiles will develop in the same way. There’s no need to panic if you feel your child’s teeth aren’t growing in on schedule. Just plan a trip to the dentist to find out where everything is at.

Set Healthy Habits

Getting your child started on a routine of regular dental visits will help them develop a positive view of the dentist. Your son or daughter can avoid an irrational fear of dentistry and they’ll pick up effective techniques for keeping their own teeth in great shape.

Why put it off any longer? Your family has nothing to lose and so much to gain from getting those first dental visits out of the way!

Posted on behalf of:
Precision Digital Dentistry
674 US-202/206
Suite 7
Bridgewater, NJ 08807
(908) 955-6999

Sep
27

Does Teething Make Babies Sick?

Your baby’s first teeth will usually show up between 4-7 months of age. The teething process continues at a variable rate until your child has all of his or her baby teeth by age 3.

Teething can be a traumatic event. Babies certainly don’t enjoy the sensation and parents are often worried sick over their child’s distress.

Typical signs of teething include:

  • Drooling
  • Chewing on objects, fingers, etc.
  • Crying and irritability
  • Appetite loss
  • Red and swollen gums

But what about fever, diarrhea, and vomiting?

Remember that teething occurs over a large part of your baby’s early years. Age 4 months to three years is pretty much the majority of a toddler’s life. That’s a long time to deal with bouts of tooth pain!

It’s thus easy to attribute any discomfort to teething during this period.

There’s actually no research linking oral pain from teething to other bodily issues such as fever or diarrhea. However, some experts still believe the two are linked.

Your child’s early years are also marked by a rapidly developing immune system. For some time, your baby can easily get sick from a variety of bugs that you’ve already built up immunity to.

So if your child has symptoms like a fever or vomiting, don’t be quick to dismiss them as signs of teething. They could actually be indicating a much more serious problem.

As far as teething issues go, you can alleviate the discomfort by offering icy baby teething rings, cool water, gum massages, or raw vegetables if your toddler can eat them safely.

Talk with your pediatric dentist to find out how you can keep your child comfortable during the teething years. Visit the pediatrician right away if your baby has other unexplained symptoms.

Posted on behalf of:
Center For Restorative, Cosmetic & Implant Dentistry
711 Greenbriar Pkwy, Suite 101
Chesapeake, VA 23320
(757) 547-2770

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