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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.

 

Toothbrushes today come in about as many sizes and shapes as one can imagine. There are angled heads, raised bristles, oscillating tufts and handles that change colors with use. While makers of toothbrushes make a lot of claims, there isn't any evidence that any one type of toothbrush design is better at removing plaque than another.

The most important thing to remember when shopping for a toothbrush for your child is that he or she actually uses it. If they achieve unsatisfactory results from the toothbrush, it's more likely than not that they either aren't brushing long enough, or using the correct technique.

Many children simply do not brush long enough. To effectively reach all areas and scrub off cavity-causing bacteria, your child should brush his teeth at least two to three minutes twice a day.

Which toothbrush is best? In general, a toothbrush head should be small (1" by 1/2") for easy access to all areas of the mouth, teeth and gums. It should have a long, wide handle for a firm grasp. It should have soft nylon bristles (natural bristles tend to harbor bacteria) with rounded ends so you won't hurt your gums. Medium and hard bristles are not recommended.

Toothbrushes should be changed every three to four months. (If your child is sick, you should change the toothbrush at the beginning of an illness and after they feel better.) Be sure to change the toothbrush (or toothbrush head if it is an electric toothbrush) before the bristles become splayed and frayed. Not only are old toothbrushes ineffective, but they may harbor harmful bacteria that can cause infection such as gingivitis (bleeding gums) and periodontitis (inflammation or infection of the gums that goes untreated and spreads to the ligaments and bone that support the teeth.). Periodontitis is the primary cause of tooth loss in adults. This disorder is uncommon in childhood but increases during adolescence.