January 24th, 2019
Mouthwash is a great way to freshen breath and keep gums healthy, but is it good for cleaning teeth? Here’s what you need to know about mouthwash and its benefits.
There are Two Main Types of Mouthwash
There are generally two types of mouthwashes available: cosmetic and therapeutic. Cosmetic mouthwash gives your mouth a clean, pleasant taste and reduces bad breath. However, cosmetic mouthwash treats the symptoms of bad breath, not the causes of the problem.
Therapeutic mouthwash helps treat tooth decay, prevent gingivitis and reduces plaque buildup. Therapeutic mouthwash may not freshen your breath as well as cosmetic mouthwash, but it will help fight the causes of bad breath.
Check for the ADA Seal of Approval
The American Dental Association – known as the ADA – tests oral products for effectiveness and safety. To attain the ADA seal of approval, a product must prove to be safe and effective. That’s why we suggest that you look for products with the ADA seal of approval. This will help you find a mouthwash that has been rigorously tested and approved by a legitimate association that advocates for oral health.
Is Mouthwash Safe for Children?
There are a number of mouthwashes that are designed specifically for children. They are usually alcohol free and feature popular children’s cartoons and come in flavors that kids enjoy like bubblegum, wild berry and grape. Mouthwash for kids is usually therapeutic and helps prevent cavities. It usually contains no alcohol and is easier on their mouth than cosmetic mouthwash. As a rule of thumb, mouthwash should not be used by children under the age of six. However, in some instances a pediatric dentist may prescribe mouthwash for a child beneath that age, but that usually only occurs in special cases.
Is Mouthwash a Good Way to Clean Teeth?
Mouthwash is a great tool to help you get better teeth, but using mouthwash alone does not replace the value and effectiveness of a full oral health routine. A proper oral health routine includes brushing your teeth for two minutes at a time twice per day and flossing once per day to clean the hard-to-reach areas of your teeth.
Visit Our Office!
Mouthwash is a great tool to help you and your child get clean teeth and gums. If you would like more information about the types of mouthwash that are safe and effective for your kids, then schedule a visit to our office! We will talk with you and your child about the best mouthwash for their overall mouth health.
August 16th, 2018
Getting your child excited about visiting the dentist can be tough, and many children feel stressed about visiting for the first time. Here’s how parents can help their children be excited for their first dental visit.
Show Your Child the Office Online
Before you take your child into a dentist’s office for the first time, take a few minutes to go through photos of the practice with them. This can help them better understand what to expect, and get them excited about their visit.
Schedule a Stress-Free First Visit
Kids can be very nervous to visit the doctor or dentist for the first time. Pediatric dentists know this, which is why most offer relaxed “meet and greets” for their first office visit. The first visit gives you a chance to gauge how your child responds to the new surroundings, and gives them a chance to enjoy the office without sitting in the dentist’s chair.
Bring a Comfort Toy
Soft, comfortable toys or blankets can work wonders for young children that are anxious about their first visit. If your child has a toy that makes them feel more comfortable, then bring it along on your trip to the pediatric dentist’s office. A small piece of home can help your child feel more comfortable while they are at the dentist’s office.
Encourage Positive Oral Health Routines at Home
One of the best ways to quell dental-visit stress is by establishing healthy oral care routines at home before their visit. This will help familiarize your child with brushing their teeth, and get them comfortable with the idea of oral healthcare.
Use Encouraging Language
Before visiting the dentist, be sure to ease your child’s stress by reminding them how fun and positive a dental visit is. Tell them about how you enjoy getting your teeth cleaned at the dentist, and how much you appreciate your dentist helping your teeth.
Establish a Dental Home by Their First Birthday
One of the best ways to eradicate dental-visit anxiety is by finding a dental home for your child before their first birthday. Introducing your child to their dentist early can get them more comfortable with oral health, and gives you an early leg up on helping them grow healthy baby teeth.
Visit Our Office
We would love to speak with you about your child and their dental needs. We see children of all ages, so call us and schedule an office tour! We want to make visiting the dentist fun, so stop by and see why pediatric dentistry is the way to go for your children!
December 14th, 2017
Does your child have sensitive gums that bleed when they brush or floss? if they do, then they may have some form of periodontal (gum) disease. But, never fear: gum disease can be diagnosed and treated by a pediatric dentist. Here’s the quick rundown of periodontal disease, sometimes called gum disease.
The Basics of Periodontal Disease
Periodontal disease manifests in a variety of ways. It occurs when plaque spreads below the gum line and irritates the gums. If periodontal disease is left untreated, then tissues and bone that hold teeth can be destroyed, resulting in tooth and bone loss. But that is only found in the most serious cases.
What Causes Periodontal Disease?
Periodontal disease is mostly caused by poor oral hygiene, which can lead to gingivitis. Other common causes are diabetes, use of certain medications, a poor diet, and genetic predisposition.
But, most periodontal disease begins as simple gingivitis, which can be easily treated and prevented.
What is Gingivitis?
Gingivitis is the most mild form of periodontal disease. It causes gums to become red, swollen, and bleed easily. If plaque is not removed by daily brushing and flossing, it produces toxins that can irritate the gum tissue, which causes gums to become red and puffy, and easily bleed. There is normally little or no discomfort associated with gingivitis, however, bleeding while brushing is quite common.
Gingivitis can lead to a variety of outcomes, such as gums that are recede away from the teeth, and chronic bad breath. More serious progressions can lead to tooth, gum and bone loss.
Preventing Periodontal Disease
Like cavities, periodontal disease can be prevented by maintaining a healthy oral routine, which includes brushing twice per day for two minutes at a time, and flossing once per day. You can help your child prevent periodontal disease by visiting their dentist once or twice per year for a routine oral checkup, and helping them maintain a healthier routine.
Detect Periodontal Disease Early
Luckily, a dentist or pediatric dentist can treat and completely reverse the effects of periodontal disease. As with most ailments, periodontal disease is best dealt with in its early stages, which makes an early diagnosis vital for successful treatment.
Schedule an appointment with our office so that we can evaluate your child’s oral health, and provide you with a treatment plan that will help you combat periodontal disease.
November 30th, 2017
Despite its strength, tooth enamel can be eroded, and leave young teeth susceptible to oral disease. This can lead to tooth decay and cavities, and even affect how your child’s smile and bite develops. But, you can take some simple steps to keep their tooth enamel healthy, and help protect their teeth for years to come.
What is Tooth Enamel?
Tooth enamel is the first line of defense your teeth have against plaque and cavities. It is the white, visible part of the tooth and it is also the hardest part of the human body. When enamel is damaged, it can appear discolored and leave the affected teeth very sensitive.
What Harms Tooth Enamel?
Unfortunately, tooth enamel takes a lot of abuse to keep teeth healthy. There are many factors that cause enamel erosion, but most of the damage is done by the foods and drinks that you consume. According to the National Institute of Health (NIH), soft drinks are the most frequent source of erosive acids, due to their high acidity and frequency of consumption. Other drinks like fruit juice, sports drinks and energy drinks can also damage your teeth through acidic erosion.
Tooth enamel can also be harmed by certain medications and medical conditions.
5 Ways to Protect Your Child’s Enamel
1 - Brush and Floss Regularly
Food debris left on your child’s teeth encourages bacteria growth that eats away at enamel and causes cavities. This is why it’s important to brush twice per day, for two minutes at a time, and floss once per day to clean debris from the hard-to-reach areas of their teeth.
2 - Drink More Water
Water is a fantastic tool in the fight against acid erosion. Water is not acidic, and does not harm tooth enamel. It also improves saliva production, which naturally cleans teeth of debris and restores the mouth back to a healthy ph balance. Try giving your child more water instead of sugary drinks to help keep their tooth enamel strong and healthy.
3 - Rinse after Meals
A great way to remove food debris from teeth is by rinsing immediately after meals. Have your child swish clean water in their mouth for 30 seconds, and then spit it out in a sink. This will help prevent acid attacks and enamel erosion.
4 - Avoid Sugary Foods and Drinks
Sugar feeds the bacteria on your teeth, causing plaque and ultimately cavities, which is why you should limit the number of sugary foods and drinks that you consume. Before buying snacks, check the back of the package for the amount of sugar contained in the package. Try to avoid sugary drinks like soda, fruit juice and sports drinks, all of which are notoriously high in sugar.
5 - Limit Citrus
Food and drinks high in citric acid erode tooth enamel in a process called demineralization. In bad cases of demineralization, acid will work its way to the soft layer beneath the enamel called the dentin. These advanced cases lead to tooth sensitivity and pain. If you consume anything with high citric acid, rinse with water for 30 seconds afterwards to clean away some of the lingering acid.
Is Your Child’s Enamel Healthy?
Visit our office so that we can evaluate your child’s overall oral health. We check and document the state of your child’s tooth enamel as a part of our regular checkups, and we will help give you and your child the knowledge necessary to keep a healthy, lifelong smile. Call us today to schedule your child’s first appointment, which will be relaxing and informal.
September 21st, 2017
Brushing alone only covers about 1/3 of the total tooth surface area in your mouth, which leaves a lot of space for plaque – and cavities – to thrive. Flossing removes plaque buildup in the places where toothbrushes can’t reach – between teeth. But, more than 50% of American don’t floss daily, and that’s a problem. Flossing is simple, and will help your entire family. To better care for our patients, we’ve decided to write 3 simple steps that will help you master flossing.
3 Steps to Master Flossing
1 - Floss Once Every Day
The best way to become a master flosser is to floss daily. Repetition is the key to mastering anything, but also fully cleaning your teeth. A full flossing routine should include cleaning teeth below the gum line, where dental plaque can go unseen and unreached by toothbrushes. If left untreated, plaque buildup near the root of teeth can lead to gingivitis and tooth loss. Bleeding gums when brushing or flossing are often an early sign of gum disease. People who regularly brush and floss their teeth suffer from gum disease and tooth decay far less than those that do not.
2 - Slow Down
If you move quickly from tooth to tooth, then you risk not fully cleaning the tartar buildup on your teeth. Remember: flossing cleans debris from between your teeth, but also helps remove a thin, damaging layer of plaque that can lead to cavities. We suggest spending about 10 seconds flossing each side of your teeth.
3 - Floss the Whole Tooth
A lot of people only floss one side of each of their teeth – focusing on the gaps between teeth as singular spaces to be cleaned. Again, flossing fights plaque buildup on teeth, so focus on flossing each side of your tooth below the gum line.
How to Floss Children’s Teeth
Here’s a basic guide to flossing your children’s teeth:
1. Begin flossing your children’s teeth when any two teeth touch.
2. Use about 12-18 inches of dental floss. If that is too difficult, try using flossing tools like soft flossing picks.
3. Use wide, flat dental tape to floss your children’s teeth. The width of the floss helps with the larger spaces in children’s teeth.
4. Be gentle when flossing children’s teeth, and avoid applying too much pressure on their gums.
5. Floss both sides of the teeth, and make sure to gently dip beneath the gum lime.
Visit Our Office
Did you know that cavities are the largest disease affecting children? Don’t let that discourage you: flossing is almost entirely preventable. Visit our office so that we can help your child fight cavities, and provide them with an oral health plan that will give them a healthy smile for years to come.