Pediatric Dentistry in Elkin, NC
Maintaining the good oral health of your children while they are young can help them achieve the best health benefits in adulthood. Primary or baby teeth are crucial in anchoring the best oral health and beautiful smiles of your children in the future.
As a trusted dentist and provider of pediatric dentistry in Elkin, NC, ManiDental would like to help you build the future smile of your little ones.
The primary teeth in children serve as a guide for the permanent teeth when they enter the adolescence period. They set and hold the space into which the new teeth will erupt. Early cavity prevention and care for the primary teeth ensure the good alignment and eruption of the permanent teeth.
Though primary teeth will come off eventually, they play a crucial role in the speech and nutrition of your children. According to the Learning Disabilities Association, crooked teeth are one of the leading causes of lisp, which is a speech disability. Orthodontic and cosmetic dentistry for children can correct their teeth alignment and fill cavities to prevent the risks associated with crooked and decayed teeth.
The Primary Teeth or Baby Teeth
Babies usually start to develop their primary teeth with the two lower front teeth. By the age of 3, most children develop all of their primary teeth.
During the development of the primary teeth or the teething stage, children and parents alike may have a rough night due to discomfort from gum swelling and possible fever. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, parents must work with a dentist or pediatrician to help alleviate the discomfort of their children when they are teething.
Oral health is important as soon as a child’s first teeth erupt. They will start to become at risk for early childhood caries. You may use a soft damp cloth to clean a few erupted teeth. You may also start them young with the brushing habit by using a soft-bristled brush.
By the age of 3, parents can introduce toothpaste to their children by adding a pea-sized amount to their brushing routine. The best time for brushing is after breakfast and before bedtime.
What To Expect On Your Child’s First Dental Appointment
The American Dental Association suggests that your child can start visiting the dentist as soon as the first tooth erupts but no later than the first birthday. Parents may be encouraged to hold their babies on their lap during the exam to make the child more comfortable in the dental practice.
Your dentist will do the following during your child’s first appointment:
- Full dental exam
- Baby bottle tooth decay
- Thumbsucking and pacifiers
- Teething stage
Parents should prepare the medical history of their child as well as any observations before the appointment. They should also keep a positive environment for their child and avoid using the concept of dentists or dental hygienists for discipline. The child must consider the dental practice as their dental home where they can feel and expect that they are cared for.
Dental Services in Elkin, NC
Pediatric Dental Treatments at ManiDental
Preventive and general dentistry are the common dental treatments for children. The goal is to keep their primary teeth healthy, so they can eat, speak, and chew properly. These treatments include:
- Topical Fluoride: Dentists use a higher concentration of fluoride to help strengthen the tooth enamel and prevent tooth decay. Though fluoride is present in water and other food sources, topical fluoride works instantly and efficiently in protecting your child’s primary teeth.
- Dental Sealants: To protect your child’s teeth from tooth decay, a thin coat of resin is placed on top of the molars. It is a simple preventive treatment that can help secure the small grooves or pits and fissures on the chewing surfaces of molars. The liquid resin is applied using a brush which only takes minutes to cover all the molars.
- Root Canal Treatment: Severe tooth decay in children may cause premature tooth loss. A root canal can help delay the process by removing the infected tooth pulp and preserving the remaining tooth structure.
Root canal treatment is recommended by dentists to prevent tooth loss which may affect the teeth alignment of children. It serves as a preventive measure to keep the primary teeth in place and prevent bite issues and crooked teeth that require orthodontic treatment.
- Dental Bonding and Fillings: It is common for children to experience chips and minor fractures in their front teeth. Dental fillings and bonding help restore the tooth structure to prevent further damage. Dentists use a tooth-colored resin and bonding material that matches the color of the tooth to seamlessly restore its appearance.
Orthodontic Treatments For Children
Premature tooth loss and crooked teeth may have an evident impact on children by the age of 7. Orthodontic treatment can help correct teeth alignment and bite issues in children and aid in their jaw development. If left untreated, the jaw may fail to develop properly and cause further dental and facial issues in adulthood.
Sports Activities & Your Child's Teeth
If your child is active in sports, a custom-made mouthguard is highly recommended by dentists to maintain healthy teeth and prevent dental injuries. The National Youth Sports Foundation for Safety reports that athletes are 60 times more likely to suffer dental injuries and recommends the use of mouthguards as a requirement in sports activities. A custom-made mouthguard is an investment that can help preserve your child’s natural teeth and prevent premature tooth loss.
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