Prevention

Smiling boy on a sea beach

Sealants

Dental sealant is a plastic resin coating that is placed in the tiny pits and grooves of the teeth as an attempt to prevent decay from starting and/or progressing in these cavity-prone areas. It is the same material as white fillings, only without the coloring.

The sealant process is painless, quick and easy! They usually last about 2-5 years, but will need to be replaced or, “touched up” periodically ensure the tooth is protected.

* It is important to note that while sealants protect the chewing surfaces of teeth, brushing and flossing daily is still necessary to prevent cavities on the other areas of your child’s teeth.

Fluoride

Our doctors will review the benefits of both topical fluoride exposure, and systemic fluoride exposure during the appointment. We spend the time analyzing your child’s fluoride exposure and making appropriate individualized recommendations. In some cases we may have the ability to re-mineralize an early weak spot on a tooth and prevent the need for a future filling. We also often suggest a fluoride varnish treatment to promote strong teeth.

For more information about fluoride, Click Here

To read what the Center for Disease Control says about Fluoride, Click Here •
To Read what the American Dental Association says about Fluoride, Click Here •

brushing teeth

happy mother and daughter kid girl brushing teeth together

Oral Hygiene Instructions

If we have the opportunity to start early, we can help educate the whole family on proper home care and dietary choices. To show children how important and easy practicing good hygiene can be, we give every patient the opportunity to watch, in a hand held mirror, as they have their teeth cleaned. First we apply a red dye we call the ‘disclosing solution.’ This temporarily stains your child’s plaque so they can easily see the areas that they miss when brushing. We then show them how to properly brush their teeth which removes the dye. Visualizing good oral hygiene teaches kids to brush for themselves and sets them up for a lifetime of healthy smiles.

Watch these videos between visits to ensure your child is using the correct technique:

• Brushing with Braces – Click Here
• Flossing with Braces  – Click Here
• Cleaning with Proxy Brush  – Click Here

The next most important thing in preventing tooth decay is proper diet. We discuss habits with you, such as when your child should graduate from bottle to sippy to regular cups, as well as which types of foods and the frequency snaking have on the risk of cavities.

*Did you know: Tooth decay is the number one chronic disease of childhood, yet it is almost 100% preventable.

Athletic Mouthguards

A mouthguard is recommended for any recreational activity that poses a risk of injury to your child’s mouth. A resilient, tear resistant, and comfortable mouthguard will cushion impact that may otherwise cause cuts to the lips or tongue, broken teeth, or broken jaws. Our pediatric dentists will evaluate your child’s teeth and recommend the perfect mouthguard for your child.

Youth flag football player

Infant baby boy sleeping peacefully with pacifier

Counseling on Finger & Pacifier Sucking

Sucking is a natural reflex for infants. Often as children become older, the prevalence of non-nutritive sucking habits decreases. Sucking beyond the ages of 3 or 4 may lead to changes in the shape of your child’s mouth; this can be detrimental to their oral health. The most common dental signs of an active habit are anterior open bite, flared incisors, and constriction of the upper jaw.

If you’re concerned, our pediatric dentists can suggest non-invasive ways to help your child become mentally ready to stop. Most children can quit their habit with different forms of positive reinforcement and physical reminders. For kids who still need extra help, our doctors are available to discuss oral appliances.

Counseling on Tobacco & Intraoral Piercings

As your pediatric dentist we have a unique opportunity to talk with your teen about tobacco use. Over the years we form strong interpersonal relationships with our patients, from infant to adolescent. Sometimes advice from a respected adult outside of the family may be beneficial. As most of us are well aware, tobacco use can lead to lung and heart disease, and also oral cancer. We are experts on oral cancers, periodontal disease, and pointing out halitosis! We are happy to help intervene to see if your child is receptive to educational and counseling services.

As pediatric dentists, we also oppose oral piercings of the tongue, lips, cheeks, and uvula. They are associated with infection, scar formation, tooth fractures, metal hypersensitivity reactions, localized periodontal disease, speech impediment, and nerve damage. They can also result in life-threatening infections, which can lead to airway obstruction. Our pediatric dentists are also comfortable discussing the potential for pathologic complications with your teenager.

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