7 Ways Your Dentist Boosts Your Child’s Oral Health
Your child’s dentist helps your child’s smile stay healthy and bright in many different ways.
The dentist you choose for your child has a significant impact on their overall oral health. In addition to capturing your child’s interest in taking care of their teeth, your kid’s dentist will also protect their oral health in these seven ways.
1. Gentle, thorough cleanings remove the plaque that brushing and flossing miss.
Kids, just like adults, need regular dental cleanings with a hygienist. Twice-daily brushing and flossing will take care of most of the plaque on your child’s teeth surface, but within the nooks and crannies between teeth and gums can lurk bacteria, food debris, and plaque build-up called tartar.
Our hygienists will gently, but thoroughly remove any tartar and leave the surface of your child’s teeth polished and clean. We usually recommend cleanings every six months, unless your child is being treated for pediatric gum disease.
2. Dental sealants protect molars from tooth decay for a few years.
Dental sealants are a secret weapon unique to children’s dentists. Sealants are a super durable, plastic-like material that is applied over your child’s freshly cleaned molars. Once hardened, these dental sealants act as a tough, long-lasting barrier against tooth decay.
How effective are the cavity prevention powers of dental sealants? Studies show that properly applied dental sealants can protect against 80% of cavities for the first two years and 50% by the fourth year.
3. Biannual topical fluoride treatments strengthen baby and adult tooth enamel.
Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral important for strengthening tooth enamel. We recommend parents choose ADA-approved fluoride toothpaste and mouth rinses for their kids. In addition, we also recommend opting in for biannual topical fluoride treatments.
During your child’s routine cleaning, we’ll apply a layer of concentrated fluoride to the surface of the newly cleaned teeth. This will sit for a bit and harden while the teeth absorb the fluoride. Afterward, your child can brush their teeth as normal to remove the fluoride layer and you’ll feel confident knowing your child is getting adequate fluoride for a cavity-free smile.
4. Sleep apnea treatment helps kids sleep soundly every night.
Sleep apnea can occur in children for a few reasons. In many cases where snoring is also present, a child may be suffering from OSA, or obstructive sleep apnea. After an evaluation, we can offer treatment options in the form of oral appliances, such as a mandibular advancement device (MAD). We can also help young kids who have a tongue-tie causing their sleep apnea via a frenectomy.
Sleep apnea leads to poor quality sleep, even if your child does seem to sleep through the night. Over time a lack of restful sleep can lead to behavioral changes and poor school performance, and can negatively impact normal physical development.
5. Regular checkups catch signs of trouble while they’re easily treatable.
Our team loves to see your kids’ familiar faces in our office, but that isn’t the only reason we encourage parents to see us every six months! Regular appointments are crucial in early diagnosis and treatment. Essentially, the sooner we see red flags pointing to developing oral health issues, the sooner we can begin treating the problem.
If your child develops a cavity, their dentist will quickly catch the imperfection on their tooth and create a plan of what to do. For a very small cavity, we might recommend waiting and monitoring it. In other cases, the cavity will be filled while it’s still quickly and easily treated, rather than when it becomes painful or needs a dental crown.
6. Early orthodontic evaluation makes timing Invisalign or braces more effective.
Did you know the ADA recommends kids get their first orthodontic evaluation by their seventh birthday? The Tomasik Family Dental team is in a unique position in that we provide orthodontic care as well as general dentistry for kids. This means your child’s bite alignment and teeth positioning will be monitored and examined during their normal routine visit.
Keeping a close eye on jaw development, teeth position, and bite alignment gives us a chance to find that perfect window of opportunity to begin treatment with braces or Invisalign. In some cases, early orthodontic treatment is necessary for repositioning a tough smile.
7. Developing a positive relationship with a dentist early on lasts for a lifetime.
A service we offer to kids that you won’t find listed as a procedure is our goal of becoming a friendly face to our young patients.
The earlier years in your child’s life are some of the most important and developing a positive relationship with their dentist is beneficial in many ways. By growing up with a dentist that’s fun, compassionate, and gentle, kids will continue to view dentists in a positive light in the future. They’ll also be more likely to make oral health a priority and to continue visiting a dentist they enjoy on a regular basis.
Join the Tomasik Family Dental team and see your child’s smile blossom.
The Tomasik Family Dental team is always welcoming new patients to our Bee Cave family dentistry practice. If you’re interested in booking an appointment for your child, all you need to do is call our office or fill out this form.
Has it been a while since your own dental checkup? Let us know and we can book both appointments on the same day!