How long will my child have their baby teeth?
All children lose their teeth at different times, but the average child will lose their last baby tooth around the age of 12! So, your child could have those teeth 12 years or more!
Why is it important to protect baby teeth and fix them?
Baby teeth are important for so many reasons! They aid in speech development and help your child chew their food. Baby teeth also hold the space in the mouth for the developing adult teeth by forming a path for the adult tooth to follow. Most importantly, they keep your child’s smile looking great!
Does diet affect my child’s teeth? How can I make their diet better to protect their teeth?
Yes! Diet is a very important factor to a healthy smile! A diet high in sugars & high fructose corn syrup can lead to tooth decay. Frequent snacking on sugary foods and sugary beverages should be avoided. The acid produced by sugary foods and drinks dissolves the enamel of the tooth and causes decay. More vegetables and proteins will help your teeth grow strong and healthy!
When should we start brushing?
Once the first tooth arrives!
What should I use to brush my baby’s teeth?
A washcloth or soft toothbrush can be used to clean an infant’s teeth. As children get older, an age appropriate sized soft toothbrush should be used.
When should we start using toothpaste?
The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends all children have their teeth brushed twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste. If a child is not able to spit on their own, an adult should brush their teeth using a very small amount (“smear”) of toothpaste. Younger children should use a fluoride free toothpaste when they “practice” brushing their teeth on their own. This will protect them from swallowing too much fluoride by accident.
When should we start flossing?
Flossing needs to start once adjacent tooth surfaces cannot be cleaned with a toothbrush alone. So, if you cannot see between the teeth, you need to floss!
How do I know my child gets enough fluoride?
Talk with your pediatric dentist! Factors such as water fluoridation and diet can influence this – we can analyze these factors and let you know if your child would benefit from fluoride supplementation.
Is it safe to get fluoride treatments? Is it beneficial?
Professionally applied fluoride treatments are safe and highly effective at preventing cavities and even remineralize early stages of tooth decay. We recommend them as part of your child’s preventative dental program. At North Georgian Pediatric Dentistry, we use a fluoride varnish that has been shown in research to be safe and better at preventing cavities than fluoride foams or gels. Patients also ingest much less fluoride when using the varnish!
What are Sealants?
Sealants are a thin white or clear coating that is typically applied to the biting surface of molars. This area is the most common place to get cavities and the sealant acts as a barrier to prevent cavities from forming. Many studies have been done on sealants and they have shown them to be effective and safe.
What kind of fillings do you do?
All of our fillings are composite restorative material. These fillings are white and mercury free. We will always discuss any type of restoration we recommend for your child, so please ask questions!
What are space maintainers?
A space maintainer is used when a child loses a baby tooth early and there is a chance for “space loss”. The space maintainer helps hold the space for the developing permanent tooth and can prevent serious orthodontic problems that can be caused by the early loss of a baby tooth.
Is it a problem if my child sucks their thumb or uses a pacifier?
These are very common self-soothing habits and most children stop them on their own as they get older. However, if the habit persists, it is important to address these habits before they cause any developmental problems.
Are X-rays safe?
There is very little risk associated with the use of dental x-rays and they help us diagnose what we are not able to see on our clinical exams (for example: cavities between teeth). At North Georgian Pediatric Dentistry, we follow the recommendations for taking x-rays set by the American Dental Association. Furthermore, we limit radiation exposure by using digital x-rays and protective aprons.
What is Nitrous Oxide and why do you use it?
Nitrous Oxide (aka: “Magic Air”, “Laughing Gas”) is a gas that can help a patient relax during dental treatment and increase their tolerance to having somewhat uncomfortable procedures completed. Patients simply breath in the air and it works quickly to decrease their anxiety. There are very little side effects and most kids are very excited about using it (they say they feel like they are in outer space!). At the end of the appointment, the patient simply breaths in oxygen for about 5 minutes and they are back to themselves and ready to go.