Kids Oral Health FAQ
Dental X-rays pose very little risk and dentists use lead aprons and high-speed files to minimize the amount of radiation.
Mouthguards can protect your child’s teeth as well as the other parts of their mount from sport related injuries. A Custom-fitted mouthguard is best but even a generic fit is better than no mouthguard at all.
A broken / chipped tooth, or really any dental issue that is causing pain should prompt you to seek the assistance of a professional.
Rinse the irritated area with warm salt water and place a cold compress on the facial area if it is swollen. You will need to contact a dentist to help you.
Sealants fill the crevasses on the chewing surfaces of your child’s teeth. This prevents some food particles from getting caught on the teeth, causing cavities. Sealants can protect teeth for many years, plus they are easy for dentists to apply so they are worth considering. They work especially well for molar surfaces.
The proper time period between dental checkups will be driven both by your child’s health condition and to some degree their genetics which is why it is best to find a dentist that you can trust and ask them to recommend a proper interval for dental checkups.
A pediatric dentist has several years of specialty training in addition to completing dental school. At the end of the day, you have to decide which health professionals are best suited to your and your child’s circumstance.
Look for a toothbrush for your child’s age group as these will have softer bristles and are smaller to fit a child’s mouth. When choosing a toothpaste, be sure to give consideration to whether it contains fluoride that your child may need. Use only a small amount of toothpaste. To the age of three an amount about the size of a grain of rice is recommended and then a pea size amount only until they are able to rise and spit on their own.
You might assume that a dark spot on a tooth is decay and you could be correct but the only way for you to be sure is to take your child to a dentist for evaluation.
It really depends on how thorough you want to be and the guidelines vary, depending on who you ask. Many dentists believe It is a good idea to see a dentist when the first tooth appears which should be somewhere around their first birthday. Some physicians recommend children have their first dental visit by the age of three but keep in mind many of these physicians are evaluating a child’s teeth during their well child visits.
Fluoride supplies tooth enamel with important nutrients and minerals. Toothpaste and mouthwashes often contain fluoride, but also your communities’ water supply may also contain fluoride so you will need to consider where your child is getting fluoride and consult your dentist about what levels are best for your child. Too much fluoride can cause Fluorosis where white or brown marks appear on the surface or your child’s teeth. While fluorosis isn’t dangerous, it is a signal that you can reduce the amount of fluoride your child is getting.
Are “baby teeth” really that important? They fall out anyway, so does it matter if they get cavities?
Primary or “baby teeth” are important, helping children speak clearly, chew food, and they help form the pathways where permanent teeth will emerge. Cavities in baby teeth can cause pain and swelling. Oral infections can cause serious health problems if left untreated.
Feed your child a balanced diet, and limit the servings of sugars and starches to help protect their teeth from decay.
Any soft-bristled toothbrush with a small head can be used to remove plaque bacteria. It is best to use a brushed designed for infants and you should use it at least once a day, preferably at bedtime.
You can start caring for your baby’s gums from the very start. But with a moistened washcloth or a piece of gauze. Gently wipe your baby’s gums at least a couple times a day but especially after feedings and before bedtime to remove bacteria. When baby teeth first appear you can change to a toothbrush with a soft bristle, small head, and large handle.