Pediatric dentists are specially trained with an additional two year residency after completing four years of dental school. Their training prepares them to meet a child's unique dental needs as their teeth grow and develop. Along with dealing with their dental needs, pediatric dentists are also trained to deal with their emotional needs. This ranges from calming a child down before or during a procedure to dealing with an energetic child who will not stay still. Pediatric dentists use a combination of empathy, patience, and skills to get the job done for their young patients.
Baby teeth are very important, both for their quality of life now and for proper development of their adult smile. Your child needs teeth to speak clearly, eat comfortably, and smile with confidence. The teeth are also needed to ensure proper spacing. If your child loses a tooth too soon, the teeth may shift.
Your child will also face problems if they have cavities that are not cared for. Cavities thrive in baby teeth. They can cause severe pain and infection, which can be dangerous if untreated.It is always a good idea to take care of teeth, regardless of if they are baby teeth or permanent teeth.
Preventative dentistry involves all the important things that you can do today to avoid problems in the future. When preventative dentistry practices are implemented at a young age, they typically follow patients into adulthood. Your child will learn how important it is to go for regular check-ups and that they should brush and floss regularly.
Additionally, if your child's teeth are healthy, they can chew food properly and get all the nutrition they need to grow. They will also have a better chance at being healthy in general, since bad teeth can harm the entire body. Your child will have the confidence that comes with a healthy smile.
Good oral hygiene can help prevent cavities. The four things that allow a cavity to form are a tooth, bacteria, carbohydrates, and time, and time is the most critical factor. Brushing and flossing regularly are important, but so is an understanding of what causes tooth decay in the first place. Dr. Bond and her team will explain how to keep your teeth strong, clean, and healthy so cavities don't have the chance to form.
Studies have shown a correlation between oral health and school performance. Students with poor oral health tend to perform poorly in school. Cavities can be painful and can lead to infections in the teeth and jaw. These dental issues can be so distracting that students simply cannot concentrate. Prevention is the best way to avoid these problems, and going to the dentist regularly is a key part of preventing dental problems.
It is important for your child's baby teeth to fall out naturally. That way, the permanent teeth will erupt into the correct positions. Because of that, we may have to use a nerve treatment for your child's baby teeth. A nerve treatment is needed when a baby tooth has a very large cavity that is close to the nerve of the baby tooth. We fix the problem by removing part of the nerve. That way, the tooth can stay in the mouth without pain and fall out naturally. Then, the permanent tooth can erupt in the proper place so your child will have a mouth full of straight teeth.
Permanent molars have large grooves on them that can collect food, plaque and acid. If the grooves are deep, it can be difficult to brush the debris off the teeth. If the food, plaque and acid are allowed to come into direct contact with the teeth, they can cause cavities. A sealant is a clear or white plastic material that we place directly on those grooves. It acts as a barrier so cavity-causing food, plaque and acid cannot reach the teeth. Brushing and flossing is still very important, though, since sealants do not protect against cavities that form in between teeth.
When breathed in, nitrous oxide calms patients without making them unconscious. They are still in full control of their bodies, but they do not feel as nervous as they did before breathing in the gas. Nitrous oxide is a safe drug, and there have not been any documented cases of allergic reactions to it. It is a good alternative to injectable drugs, which last longer but come with higher risks. It is painless to administer and will help your child have a better experience at the dentist. Additionally, it calms the parents down when they see their children relax.
X-rays are an important part of the dental process. They allow us to see cavities that would otherwise be hidden, and they give us the opportunity to see teeth that are developing underneath the gums but have not erupted yet. We use contemporary safeguards to minimize exposure to radiation. In fact, your child will receive less radiation with an x-ray than he or she would receive when walking outside in the sun or talking on a cell phone. We conduct bitewing x-rays once a year and panoramic x-rays every five years. High-risk patients may have to get x-rays on a more frequent basis until their situation is under control.
We refer to restorations as fillings when we are “filling” in a small to medium sized hole. These holes can be on the top or the side of the tooth. We utilize a material that is white in color and a plastic type of material (resin). Fillings are only recommended when the cavity (or hole) is not too large. If the filling is too large, when your child bites down on it, it will break, requiring another trip to the dentist. In addition, fillings require more care from the patient, since only part of the tooth is restored, therefore leaving additional tooth structure that can still GET a new cavity.
We recommend the placement of a crown when the cavity/hole is large or if a nerve treatment is recommended (information following in the next section). Crowns are more protective and more long lasting. There are many types of crowns available to us now, including white and silver, therefore Dr. Bond will discuss with you the options for the treatments that she feels is in your child’s best interest.