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toothbrushing

Preventive dentistry begins with the first tooth. We offer FREE DENTAL EXAMS to new patients 18 months and younger. We know that the establishment of good oral hygiene practices will prevent unnecessary decay throughout childhood. The earlier the dental visit, the better the chance of preventing dental disease and helping your child belong to the cavity-free generation.

 

Did you Know?

If you have cavity-causing germs in your mouth, you can easily pass those to your baby. Sharing utensils, cleaning a pacifier with your mouth or other activities that share saliva can pass germs that could cause problems for you baby's earliest teeth. It is important for parents to see the dentist regularly to keep their mouth clean and avoid passing cavity-causing germs to their babies.

 

Brushing

Brushing is the most effective method for removing harmful plaque from your child's teeth and gums. Getting the debris off their teeth and gums in a timely manner prevents bacteria in the mouth from turning into harmful, cavity-causing acids.

Start cleaning your baby's mouth after birth, using a a small piece of wetted gauze or a washcloth to wipe away plaque on your infant's teeth as they erupt. As your baby's teeth erupt, begin brushing them with a small, soft bristled toothbrush. Avoid using fluoridated toothpaste on your child until he or she reaches the age of 2. Use only a small, pea size amount of toothpaste being careful not to let them swallow it.

By the age of 4 or 5, your child should be able to begin brushing his or her teeth with the parent brushing them a second time. Once there is contact between the baby teeth, begin flossing your child's teeth once a day.

Most dentists agree that brushing two times a day is the minimum. If your child eats sticky foods during the day, a simple brushing with plain water or rinsing the mouth with water for 30 seconds will help keep the teeth free of plaque. Our team of dental specialists and staff strive to improve the overall health of our patients by focusing on preventing, diagnosing and treating conditions associated with teeth and gums. Please use our dental library to learn more about dental problems and treatments available. If you have questions or need to schedule an appointment, contact us.

Cavities
The best defense against cavities is good oral hygiene, including brushing with a fluoride toothpaste, flossing and rinsing. Your body's own saliva is also an excellent cavity fighter, because it contains special chemicals that rinse away many harmful materials. Chewing a good sugarless gum will stimulate saliva production between brushing. Read More...



Wisdom Teeth
Wisdom teeth, or third molars, typically begin to develop in early adolescence, and may attempt to erupt into the mouth around the ages of 17 to 20.

Wisdom teeth are sometimes removed after the roots are somewhat developed, or at least three-fourths developed. This is usually in the adolescent years. In many cases, wisdom teeth do not grow in properly, have a proper bite relationship, or have healthy gum tissue around them. Often, wisdom teeth improperly erupt and become impacted, requiring them to be extracted, or pulled. Although they are like any other teeth, most people continue to have normal bites and well functioning sets of teeth in their absence.

 

Saliva is your body's best mechanism for fighting the destructive forces of acids formed by plaque. Saliva acts as a buffer and re-mineralizing agent. Sugarless gum is one way to stimulate the flow of saliva in your mouth in between brushings.

The best way to prevent cavities, however, is to brush and floss your child's teeth twice daily. (Use a small piece of wetted gauze or a washcloth to wipe away plaque on your infant's teeth.) Fluoride, a natural substance that also helps re-mineralize the tooth structure, is used in community water systems and is a main ingredient of many types of toothpastes. If your child is at medium to high risk for cavities, we may recommend special high concentration fluoride gels, mouth rinses, or dietary fluoride supplements.

Children are the most susceptible to developing cavities. Heredity also may play a major role in how susceptible your child's teeth are to the formation of a cavity. For example, tooth structure, size, and shape may be passed down through many generations. This includes deep pits and grooves, which are ideal "plaque traps."

Many cavities originate in the hard-to-clean areas between teeth and in the fissures and pits - the edges in the tooth crown and gaps between teeth.

Common symptoms of a possible cavity may include:
  • A painful toothache
  • Higher sensitivity in your teeth to hot or cold temperatures, liquids, or food
  • The presence of decay such as white spots
  • Tooth discolorations
  • Often, cavities develop without any pain or other symptoms. That is why it is so important to schedule your child for regular, routine visits with our office.

    Left untreated, cavities can lead to more serious problems for your child, such as infection of the core of the tooth (pulp) or root canal, permanent deterioration, and even loss of the tooth itself.

    Your child should avoid frequent consumption of high sugar foods, especially sticky foods, because the longer the food stays on your teeth and gums, the greater the likelihood a cavity will form. Healthy snacks that are low in sugar include white milk, fresh fruits, raw vegetables, dark breads, whole grain and enriched cereals, sugar free candies, gum and other snacks. High sugar foods are best eaten with a regular meal.