Pediatric dentistry (pedodontics) is the branch of dentistry dealing with children from birth through adolescence.
Pediatric dentists promote the dental health of children as well as serve as educational resources for parents. It is recommended that a dental visit should occur within six months after the presence of the first tooth or by a child’s first birthday.
It is important to establish a comprehensive and accessible ongoing relationship between the dentist and patient. This is because early oral examination aids in the detection of the early stages of tooth decay. Early detection is essential to maintain oral health, modify aberrant habits, and treat as needed and as simply as possible. Additionally, parents are given a program of preventative home care (brushing/flossing/fluorides), a caries risk assessment, information on finger, thumb, and pacifier habits, advice on preventing injuries to the mouth and teeth of children, diet counseling, and information on growth and development.
First Visit to the Dentist
Your child’s first visit to our dental clinic is usually short and may involve a very little treatment. This way is the perfect opportunity to make friends with the dentist and becomes accustomed with the dental office. It is likely that the dentist may ask you to sit in the dental chair and hold your child during the exam or may ask you to sit in the reception area during part of the visit so a relationship can be built between the little pacient and his/her dentist.
During the exam will be checked your child’s teeth for decay, examine your child’s bite, and look for any potential problems with the gums, jaw, and oral tissues. If necessay, the dentist will clean the teeth. Parents will be taught about the childs oral health and hygene, discuss dental developmental issues and answer any questions.
Topics your dentist may discuss with you might include:
- Good oral hygiene practices for your child’s teeth and gums and cavity prevention
- Fluoride needs
- Oral habits (thumb sucking, tongue thrusting, lip sucking)
- Developmental milestones
- Proper nutrition
Schedule of dental checkups. Many dentists like to see children every 6 months to build up the child’s comfort and confidence level in visiting the dentist, to monitor the development of the teeth, and promptly treat any developing problems.
You will be asked to complete medical and health information forms concerning the child during the first visit. Please, come prepared with the necessary information.
Baby teeth are forming even before birth. No earlier than 4 months, the first primary, or “baby teeth’’ will erupt through the gums. Lower teeth usually erupt before upper teeth. Until age of 3 they will all erupt.
Common Signs and Symptoms of Teething
- A general feeling of discomfort
- Disturbed sleep
- Gum rubbing/biting/sucking
To help alleviate the pain, we recommend to give your baby to bite a chilled/frozen teething ring or to rub his or her gums with local anaesthetics recommended by your dentist.
Permanent teeth appear around age 6, starting with molars and incisors of the lower mouth. This process continues until the age of 21 years. Adults have 28 permanent teeth or can reach up to 32 including wisdom teeth.
Healthy oral hygiene
As your child’s teeth erupt, be sure to examine them, looking for lines and discoloration that may be caused by decay. Remember that sugary foods and liquids can attack the tooth, so take care that your child brushes his or her teeth after eating. We recommend brushing two times a day! When a baby’s tooth erupts, parents should brush the tooth with a soft-bristled toothbrush.
To prevent tooth decay, you shouldn’t let your child go to bed with a bottle/cup of sweeten milk or juice. If you give your child a drink before bed, always choose water.
If you notice signs of decay, contact your dentist immediately.
A serious form of decay in children can be found at infants. This is due to exposure of the teeth for a long period to liquids containing a high level of sugar. These liquids include milk (including that of the mother), powder milk, fruit juice and other sweetened drinks.
Sweet liquids that touch your child’s teeth permit the production of acids and bacteria that affect the teeth’s enamel.
If you use to give your child a bottle of liquid in order to fall asleep, this must contain only water. If the child does not fall asleep before tasting his favorite drink try to dilute it more and more during two, three weeks.
After each meal, wipe the teeth and the gums of the baby with a sterile tissue or a special stick for removing plaque.
The concept of a “filling” is replacing and restoring your tooth structure that is damaged due to decay or fracture with a material. Our dental clinic you can choose between Tooth-coloured fillings or colored composite that will get a positive response from the child. Choosing the color of their fillings will be like a game for them and in addition, kids will become more interested in taking care of their new colored tooth.
The fact that your toddler’s teeth are going to fall out doesn’t mean you can ignore a child’s oral care. Good oral health habits will prevent tooth decay in the first set of teeth, and the habits your child learns will stick with him throughout his life.
A dental sealant is a protective barrier placed on children’s teeth for the purpose of sealing out food and bacteria which result in cavities. Sealants used in conjunction with a comprehensive dental care routine that includes proper brushing, flossing, fluoride treatments and a healthy diet, will help maintain dental health. While brushing and flossing are critical components of any dental health regimen, sealants provide additional protection for the grooved areas of teeth from what is known as pit and fissure decay.
The number of teeth that should be sealed depends on your child’s incidence towards dental caries. For maximum protection, dental sealants should be applied as soon as possible after permanent tooth eruption. This would be around age 6 for most children.
Sealants give your child’s teeth extra protection.
An extraction is the complete removal of a tooth. Extractions are sometimes necessary if a primary tooth is preventing the normal eruption of a permanent tooth, if the tooth has suffered extensive tooth decay or trauma that cannot be repaired, if the patient has gum disease, or if the tooth is impacted (usually the wisdom teeth). Depending on the complexity of the case, an extraction can be performed surgically or non-surgically. A mild anesthesia is used to ensure your child is as comfortable as possible throughout the procedure.
When Should Children Get Their First Dental X-Ray?
There are no rules for when to start dental X-rays. Some children who may be at higher risk for dental problems (for example, those prone to baby bottle tooth decay or those with cleft lip/palate) should have X-rays taken earlier than others. Usually, most children will have had X-rays taken by the age of 5 or 6. As children begin to get their adult teeth around the age of 6, X-rays play an important role in helping your dentist to see if all of the adult teeth are growing in the jaw, to look for bite problems, and to determine if teeth are clean and healthy.
Amalocclusion can be inherited, or some types may be acquired. Some causes of malocclusion include missing or extra teeth, crowded teeth or misaligned jaws. Accidents or developmental issues, such as finger or thumb sucking over an extended period of time, may cause malocclusions. Our advice is to visit our orthodontist as soon as possible.
If you look forward to set your child up for a beautiful smile, contact us for a consultation!