We’re a family dental practice serving patients of all ages, including very young children who are just beginning to get their teeth. The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) recommends that children visit a dentist within six months after the first tooth erupts or around their first birthday. Not only does this introduce a healthy dental care routine, but it’s also the best way to ensure proper care of children’s primary, or baby teeth, which are vital to lifelong oral health.
We’re sensitive to the fact that some children feel worried about trips to the dentist—many of us on staff have kids ourselves!—and we’re gentle and patient with our youngest patients to ensure a fun, comfortable visit. Parents are encouraged to stay with their child if needed, and kids are welcome to ask questions, share their fears, and learn about the dental process step-by-step throughout their entire visit.
We’ve found that one of the best ways to encourage a positive exam experience is for young children to see the same dentist as their parents and older siblings, and we’re proud to serve your entire family in our office.
Dental sealants help prevent tooth decay and cavities in baby teeth by covering, or sealing, the recesses on a tooth’s biting surfaces. This includes the grooves and fissures that are common in the back teeth, as well as the cingulum pits that may be common in the front teeth.
Pediatric Fluoride Treatments
Fluoride treatments are a useful way to help remineralize teeth in our pediatric patients. These treatments, which provide a further supplement to the fluoride in your toothpaste and tap water, repair the enamel layer and help prevent tooth decay by making teeth more resistant to the bacteria that causes plaque buildup. Patients occasionally express concern about the safety of fluoride treatments for children, but we stress that the levels contained in topical dental treatments are not dangerous. If you have questions about fluoride, we’re happy to answer them.
Pediatric Composite (Tooth-Colored) Restorations
When a pediatric patient has a cavity, one of the most natural-looking materials we can use for treatment is composite, which is a tooth-colored filling. Composite fillings take place during a single visit and are used to treat cavities in teeth that are not yet experiencing severe decay. Once we’ve removed the decay from the tooth, we fill in the tooth with the composite material, which immediately hardens for an efficient restoration.
Baby Teeth Extraction
Sometimes, a tooth cannot be restored. In this case, the best course of action is to remove the tooth, whether it’s a baby tooth in our pediatric patients or a permanent tooth in our adult patients. For this procedure, the area is numbed with local anesthesia and then loosened from the socket in the gum. After the loosening, the tooth is removed carefully using a forcep. Following tooth extraction, a few stitches may be required. For more information about care following a tooth extraction, visit our post-op instructions page.
If your child loses a tooth early or has to have one extracted, space maintainers are a great way to make sure that the permanent adult tooth has room to grow in when the time comes. These custom-made appliances can be removable or semi-permanent, and they help guide the permanent tooth into position, reducing the need for orthodontic work in the future.