Teaching Your Child Proper Dental Care

Mar 1st, 2019
Easton Dentists May 18th, 2019

Teaching your child proper dental care in their younger years is an investment in their health that will pay off in their latter years. Start by setting an example; taking good care of your own teeth sends a message that oral health is something to be valued.

To help your child protect their teeth and gums, teach them to these simple habits:

  • Brushing twice a day to remove plaque-the sticky film on teeth that’s the main cause of tooth decay.
  • Flossing daily to remove plaque from between your teeth and under the gum line, before it can harden into tartar. Once tartar has formed, it can only be removed by a professional cleaning.
  • Eat a well-balanced diet that limits starchy or sugary foods, which produce plaque acids that cause tooth decay.
  • Use dental products that contain fluoride, including toothpaste.
  • Take your child to the dentist for regular checkups.

Supervising your children until they get the hang of these steps may be a good idea:

  • Use a pea-sized dab of toothpaste. Teach your child not to swallow the toothpaste.
  • Using a soft-bristled toothbrush, brush the inside surface of each tooth first, where plaque may accumulate most. Brush gently back and forth.
  • Clean the outer surfaces of each tooth. Angle the brush along the outer gumline. Gently brush back and forth.
  • Brush the chewing surface of each tooth. Gently brush back and forth.
  • Use the tip of the brush to clean behind each front tooth, both top and bottom.
  • Don’t forget to brush the tongue.

The Perfect Road Map For Your Child’s Oral Health

Sep 15th, 2016
Easton Dentists Mar 1st, 2017

Kid Roadmap

On July 3rd, 1806, two years into their journey to chart the uncharted west of America, pioneer explorers Meriwether Lewis and William Clark reached a challenge of epic proportion – the Rocky Mountains. What next, they wondered? Without a map, they were forced to do what explorers do – explore, and hope for the best. So, that got us thinking. Wouldn’t it be nice to have a handy map you could use to chart your own dental health? With that in mind, and in honor of our explorers, we at The Dental Center at Easton wanted to share with you a few mile markers you can use to stay on top of your child’s health today, next year, and for years to come!

 

6 to 24 months

When you’re a new parent, life is a whirlwind, and the dental care of your newborn may not be top of mind when you look in their mouths and see no teeth! Here are some things to keep in mind:

Schedule your regular visit: As soon as that first tooth comes in, you’ll want to give us a call at (614) 414-0111 to schedule your regular visit so we can review your next steps and the steps for your child. Also, be aware the ADA recommends fluoridated toothpaste now for all children under the age of three. Don’t wait!

Ask us about:

  • Home hygiene basics: Things like, tips and tricks on brushing and other care. There’s nothing better than having our hygienists give brushing tutorials – they’re experts!
  • Preventative dentistry: The possible need for fluoride supplements
  • Dietary strategies: Achieving a balanced diet early in life for good oral health later
  • Feeding practice awareness: Bottle, breastfeeding, and no-spill training cups
  • Non-nutritive oral habits: Thumb sucking, pacifiers
  • Making Dental Visits Normal: Even from a young age, your child should be very comfortable visiting the dentists. He or she should build that regular habit while young to keep a strong sense of normalcy.

 

2 to 12 years old

Ah, the little ones are growing up. Teeth are coming in at all sorts of crazy angles, and you’re going crazy from the rise in obligations. Here’s a quick list of what to consider during this time frame:

  • Preventative dentistry: Pit and fissure sealants can do wonders for keeping your child’s dental bills down, and their teeth in their head until they’re ready to fall out naturally. Ask us about them. They’re affordable AND useful. And, super-fast, you’ll be in and out in no time.
  • Orthodontic Consultation: Visiting an orthodontist for an early consultation is best done around your child’s seventh birthday. With today’s technology, early intervention can reduce the cost and duration of braces when your child gets older.

 

The Teen Years

The years “everything” happens! As children start to come into their own, new habits and desires begin to unfold as well. You’ll have to address every imaginable concern during these years, from piercings, to calls for whitening, braces, and the need to refer yourself away from your pediatric dentist and to a general dentist for continuing oral care. So, speak with us about:

  • Cosmetic Dentistry: What solutions are advisable now, and what things should be avoided.
  • Teen social pressures: Smoking, alcohol, intraoral/perioral piercings and the like. Believe it or not, we can help a lot with this. Does your teen have a favorite Dental Center hygienist? We might be able to arrange for that person to help when your teen comes in so they can address these concerns with an intermediary they trust. Give us a call at (614) 414-0111 to see how we can help!
  • Orthodontics: Options for minimizing appearance and health problems later in life.
  • Home hygiene tips: Brushing, flossing, choosing the right mouthwash.
  • Craniofacial injury prevention: With your children’s possible participation in sports, you’ll want to get them a mouthguard. Hands down it’ll be one of your best investments in a healthy mouth. And we make great ones here at The Dental Center!
  • Positive Reinforcement: Your teen hears lots of feedback from every direction, but it can be very helpful to hear the benefits of good oral health from a different voice then they hear everything else. We will work hard to reinforce this necessary message with you to your teen!

Staying on top of your child’s oral health isn’t as hard as you think, and if you keep this schedule handy, you’ll be ahead of most of your neighbor’s kids when it comes to a healthy mouth and body. Come to think of it … why not share it with them as well? They’ll thank you for the help.

Should You be Worried About Discolored Baby Teeth?

Dec 14th, 2009
Easton Dentists Mar 1st, 2017

Baby teeth, which are also called primary teeth, are typically off-white or ivory. As a young child’s teeth start to come in, many parents are alarmed to realize that their child’s teeth are not white. Discolored baby teeth can be caused by many reasons, including:

  • Inadequate brushing. If baby teeth aren’t brushed properly, plaque may form on the teeth — which can lead to tooth discoloration.
  • Medication use. Infant medications containing iron, such as supplemental vitamins, may cause dark stains on baby teeth. Taking the antibiotic tetracycline during pregnancy can cause discolored baby teeth, too.
  • Tooth or gum injury. Trauma to baby teeth or gums may give baby teeth a pink or gray hue.
  • Weak enamel. A genetic problem with enamel formation may lead to discolored baby teeth.
  • Excessive fluoride. Excessive fluoride, or fluorosis, may cause bright white spots or streaks on the teeth.
  • Newborn jaundice. A baby who develops jaundice after birth may have baby teeth with a green tint.
  • Serious illness. A widespread infection during infancy may result in discolored baby teeth. Conditions such as newborn hepatitis and some types of heart disease can have the same effect.

If the discoloration is caused by inadequate brushing, more thorough brushing is likely to help. Use water and a small, soft-bristled toothbrush or the fingertip variety designed for infants. A child does not need to use toothpaste until he or she learns to spit, usually about age 2 or 3.

If your child drinks from a bottle, remember that sipping milk or juice throughout the day or while falling asleep may lead to tooth decay. Don’t let your child carry a bottle during the day, and don’t put your baby to bed with a bottle, unless it contains a small amount of plain water.

In other cases, treatment options may include bleaching the discolored teeth or simply watching the teeth for signs of other problems. Discuss your concerns about your son’s baby teeth with his doctor. He or she may offer a referral to a pediatric dentist.