Early Intervention to Prevent Ongoing Issues
It’s all about prevention when it comes to children’s dental health! Ideally, you want to start your child out on the right path to optimal oral health care. You are already doing everything you should at home. You are helping your child to brush and floss at home. You watch their sugar intake and they are eating a good diet, which is rich in nutritious foods. You know these daily dental hygiene habits will follow them into adulthood.
Now is the time your dentist takes over the reins and becomes your partner in your child’s oral health care routine. Tooth decay is a serious problem that ultimately leads to infection, pain, and loss of teeth. Your pediatric dentist is committed to tailoring preventive dentistry treatment plans to fit every child’s individual needs.
Children’s dental cleanings
• Removal of plaque
Plaque is a film that forms on the teeth from a combination of bacteria, food debris, and saliva. Plaque can produce toxins that inflame the gums, which can cause gingivitis (the early stage of gum disease)
• Removal of calculus (tartar)
When plaque is left on the teeth, it can harden into calculus. It can form above or below the gum line and it must be removed by a dental professional with special instruments.
• Teeth polishing
A Cleaning appointment always will end with teeth polishing to remove stains and plaque that regular tooth brushing has not removed.
Cleanings are an important preventive measure to help keep gums healthy and teeth cavity free. Even though children’s primary teeth are eventually replaced with their permanent teeth, it is important to keep those initial teeth healthy. Primary teeth assist children with eating and speaking. They also fill the space while waiting for the permanent teeth to come in. In addition to the cleaning, there is a comprehensive oral exam to check for tooth decay, early signs of gum disease, and other oral issues. Cleanings should be done twice a year.
Dental sealants are thin, plastic coatings that are applied to the surface of the tooth to protect the grooves of the teeth from decay, and act as a barrier protecting enamel from plaque and acids. They are simple to apply and take only a few minutes to seal each individual tooth. Dental sealants are so effective in preventing decay on the biting surfaces of the chewing teeth, they are recommended for most children.
If your child loses a tooth early or has to have a primary tooth extracted due to dental decay, your dentist may recommend using a space maintainer. The purpose of the spacer is to keep the space open to allow the permanent tooth to erupt normally and come into place. If space is not maintained then teeth can shift into the open space and orthodontic treatment may be required later. Not every child who loses a tooth early needs a space maintainer, your dentist will be able to determine whether it is necessary to have one or not.
If you need to schedule a visit for your child or want to learn more about preventive dental care for your child, call our office in Westchester. We, at Westchester Pediatric Dentistry, want to partner with you to ensure your child receives the best care possible. Dr. Christie Burnett and Dr. Deepa Sreenivasan are ready to provide the treatments your child needs.