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Pediatric Dentistry

What is a Pediatric Dentist?

A Pediatric dentist undergoes another couple of years of specialized training to be certified to handle the oral health of children from infancy through the teenage years. Each year of a child's life requires a different approach to their oral health due to the fact that each year they are developing as human beings.

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Why is a Pediatric Dentist Important?

Pediatric Dentists are equipped to handle any developmental stage in a child's life. Primary teeth are an essential part of growth in a child's mouth. They lay the pathway for their permanent teeth as well set proper eating and speech habits. If a child cannot properly use their teeth, they struggle with basic living exercises.

 

Pediatric Dentists at St. Vincent's Dental Center understand that each child is unique and requires a different amount of attention. Teeth grow in at different times and bone structure changes at different times. With the constant changes in a person body, you must be trained and equipped to accuratly operate orally on a child.

Prevention & Treatment

Taking care of your child's teeth
  • Protecting a child's mouth starts with proper hygiene care

    • From birth, a child's mouth must be cleaned using a soft cloth and water. Avoid any fluoride substances at this stage in a child's life.

    • When the child's teeth begin to come through, you can use a toothbrush with very soft bristles. You can use a small amount of toothpaste but do not use toothpaste with fluoride.

    • When the teeth  have fully grown and the child is around ages 4 - 6 you may start to use toothpaste with fluoride but you cannot let your child swallow it. 

    • Make sure to brush your child's teeth until they are equipped to do it properly on their own.

  • Flossing should begin when any two teeth are touching. Without flossing, decay between the teeth will begin to build up damaging those essential primary teeth

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Healthy Diet, Healthy Habits

As a child develops into a young adult, their structure that is growing is heavily affected by their diet. Just like the rest of the body, their teeth and soft tissue is affected by the food and drink they take in. The more snacking a child does, the more decay on your child's teeth will happen. Make sure they are taking in a balance from the five major food groups and limiting sugary foods such as candy or soda

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Flouride

Flouride is a naturally occurring element that reduces tooth decay 50 - 70%. Children that have not yet grown in their permanent teeth will be strengthening their adult teeth below the gums by in taking fluoride. 

A common form of fluoride, in most places, is tap water. It is actually recommended to drink tap water since filters will remove almost all of the fluoride residing in the water. 

Excess fluoride can result in dental fluorosis, which is a condition that affects the coloration of your permanent teeth. The younger the child is, the easier it will be to attain dental fluorosis so it is important to monitor your child's intake of fluoride.

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Tobacco

Tobacco is damaging to any person of any age. Tobacco will affect a child's developmental growth as well as drastically increase the chance of oral cancer in later years. If your child is chewing or smoking tobacco, a sign of oral cancer could be sores, white or read patches on the lips, constant tenderness on the lips, or difficulty chewing and swallowing. Protect your child from the harms of tobacco today!

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