Monday, June 22, 2020

7 WAYS TO IMPROVE YOUR CHILD’S DENTAL HEALTH

Your child’s dental care is essential to their health. However, some parents can have a hard time judging how much dental care their child needs. You know that you need to help your kids prevent cavities, but you might not always know the best way to keep tooth decay at bay.
To help you maintain your child’s dental health, here are seven of the best possible ways you can keep your kids’ teeth in good shape.
  1. Find the right dentist. Your first and most important step toward improving your child’s dental health is to find the right childrens dentists. The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry and the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that every child see their childrens dentists within their first year. This helps to make sure that their gums and teeth are healthy. Visiting childrens dentists and finding the right one for your family can also help you learn the right techniques for brushing and taking care of your child’s teeth.
  2. Opt for water over juice. Fruit juice is an all-time favorite for kids. But it’s important to make sure your kids aren’t drinking too much juice or sports drinks. Not only can the sugar in these drinks cause cavities, but certain sports drinks can also impact your child’s enamel. Researchers found that exposure to energy drinks such as Rockstar, Monster®, and Red Bull® resulted in twice as much enamel loss (3.1%) as exposure to sports drinks such as Powerade®, Gatorade®, and Propel® (1.5%). Your kids can enjoy juice and sports drinks occasionally, but make sure that they’re drinking more water than juice to promote their dental health.
  3. Monitor your child’s brushing. It’s easy to assume that your child has their teeth brushing techniques down after you show them how to do it the first few times. However, it’s important to monitor your child’s teeth brushing habits at least until they’re 10 years old. This is because your child can end up brushing too hard, brushing too little, or missing certain areas in their mouth.
  4. Make sure to take care of your own teeth. Kids emulate their parents. That means even if you teach your child the importance of dental care, they might not take their dental health seriously if you don’t take your own seriously. Make sure that you’re taking care of your teeth just as well and that your child sees that.
  5. Use children’s mouthwash. Children between the ages of six and 12 can begin to use a children’s mouthwash with adult supervision. The only time your kids should be using a children’s mouthwash under the age of six is if it’s recommended by a dentist for children. Your child needs to be able to safely swish the mouthwash and spit it out without swallowing it. Fluoride-free mouthwashes can help to reduce the risk of gingivitis.
  6. Reduce how much bread you eat. Whole grains are important both for your health and the health of your kids. You want to limit how much bread and grains you’re eating, though. This is because bacteria love to eat the sugars that breads leave behind in your mouth. This increases your child’s risk for cavities. Another way you can fight back against cavities is by swishing your mouth swish water after eating to reduce the sugars left behind in your mouth.
  7. Keep an eye out for dental problems early. Early treatment of orthodontic problems can help to guide the growth of your child’s jaw and facial bones as they grow up. Certain orthodontic problems can cause pain and bone issues if left untreated. Make sure to keep an eye out for potential orthodontic problems such as speech difficulty, teeth crowding, mouth breathing, and difficulties chewing or biting. Kids can begin to see an orthodontist by the age of seven. Reach out to your pediatric dentist if you’re worried about your child’s teeth.
Looking for local childrens dentists in your area? Smilez Pediatric Dental Group has the right dentist for your family. With years of experience in pediatric dentistry, we have the expertise and compassion to make sure your child feels safe and comfortable during their dental exams and treatments. For more information about our dental services or to schedule an appointment, contact Smilez Pediatric Dental Group today.

The original post can be found here.

Thursday, February 27, 2020

A Parent's Guide To Brushing Your Child's Teeth

More than 40% of children will have dental cavities by the time they reach kindergarten. As a parent, this can be easily avoided by instilling a healthy brushing habit in your child’s routine. This brushing habit will defend their teeth from many dangers, specifically tartar buildup.
Tartar is formed when plaque on the teeth reacts to other minerals in the mouth. When this reaction happens, a thick yellow substance is left on the teeth, which can become difficult to remove.
Luckily, there are things like tartar removing toothpaste and tartar removing dental gel to make things a little easier.
However, the best way to beat tartar is to prevent it. Here are five ways you can prevent tartar from building up in your child's mouth.

Encourage your Child to Brush Twice A Day

One of the most effective ways to fight tartar build up on your child’s teeth is by brushing twice a day. Plaque builds up on teeth every hour of every day and within 24 to 72 hours, plaque build-up will turn into tartar.
To stop this process before it even starts, have your child brush their teeth twice a day with tartar removing toothpaste or plaque removing dental gel. Doing this will reduce plaque build-up on their teeth and, therefore, will reduce the chances of tartar buildup.

Encourage Using an Electric Toothbrush

When discussing brushing your teeth with your child, an easy way to get them interested in healthy habits is to offer a character-designed electric toothbrush. A kid-friendly brush with a special character or animal on it will get your child excited about brushing and an electric one will provide an added opportunity to remove as much plaque from their teeth as possible.

Floss Regularly

Flossing is a crucial way to maintain your child’s healthy mouth. When they don't floss regularly, it's actually doing more damage as items such as sugar can slowly wear away at the teeth’s enamel. Flossing is truly the only way to remove tartar and food build-up in between their teeth.
Especially with kids who have lost their baby teeth, it is very important to help them develop a healthy habit of flossing in addition to brushing with tartar removing toothpaste in order to keep their new teeth cavity-free.

Brushing Their Gums

Tartar can build up above and below your child’s gum line, so it's important that they brush their gums regularly. Show your child how to carefully brush their gum line with tartar removing toothpaste in order to encourage healthy gums, but at the same time not damaging them with harsh brushing techniques.

Pay Attention to What you Feed Your Child

Your child’s diet can have a major effect on their overall dental health. It is important to avoid feeding your child foods that are high in sugar, including carbonated drinks to prevent plaque build-up on their teeth. Feeding your child a well-balanced diet is a key aspect to avoiding cavity growth and bad oral health.
As a parent, there are many daily habits that your child will inherit just by watching what you do. It is important to encourage healthy brushing techniques at a young age to avoid frequent trips to the dentist due to plaque build-up and cavities.
LIVFRESH dental gel is safe for children of all ages. Adult supervision during brushing is recommended for smaller children. To learn more about our products please visit our Frequently Asked Questions page. 

5 STEPS PARENTS CAN TAKE TO IMPROVE KIDS’ DENTAL HEALTH

As a parent, you feel a responsibility for your kids’ health and safety. You make sure they are vaccinated against diseases, fasten their seat belts, and swim with a buddy. But what about their dental health?
Dental health is essential to a healthy body for a variety of reasons:
  • Malnutrition: People with painful teeth are limited in what they can eat. Tooth pain can cause people to avoid exactly the foods their bodies need, like fruits and vegetables.
  • Infection: Dental abscesses can spread elsewhere in the body, causing problems such as bone infections.
  • Pain: Dental problems can lead to pain in the teeth, gums, jaws, and sinuses. These pains can severely limit activities.
  • Social obstacles: Poor dental hygiene can lead to missing teeth, bad breath, and facial swelling, all of which can impede a child’s social interactions.
With these consequences to poor dental health in mind, here are five ways parents can improve their kids’ dental health:

See a Dentist

Visiting pediatric dentists can be one of the most essential parts of maintaining your child’s dental health. Pediatric dentists can monitor your child’s oral growth and development and identify behaviors, such as thumb sucking or tongue thrusting, before they cause long-term damage.
Pediatric dentists can also keep your kids’ teeth clean and make sure their teeth are properly fluoridated. Fluoride is an essential nutrient for developing teeth because fluoride helps calcium build teeth in a process called “mineralization.” Without fluoride, teeth are at risk of tooth decay because the mineralization process is less effective.
If your child drinks bottled water, you should be aware that it may be difficult to determine the levels of fluoride in the water. In fact, according to a 2012 study in the Journal of Pediatric Dentistry, more than 65% of parents were unaware of the fluoride levels in the bottled water their children drink.
If your child feels anxiety about visiting a dentist, pediatric dentists, and their staff often have well-rehearsed ways to calm their fears. Being able to relate to kids and having the ability to explain what is happening during a dental visit are skills in every pediatric dentist‘s toolbox.

Nutrition

Teeth and gums benefit from many nutrients that aid in their growth and protect them from diseases. As mentioned above, fluoride helps calcium mineralize in teeth. This calcium comes from dietary sources, such as milk and other dairy products, dark green vegetables, and some nuts.
Additionally, the nutrient phosphorus is important to developing bones and teeth. Phosphorus can be found in legumes, nuts, eggs, meat, and fish.
Vitamin C is an antioxidant that is necessary for healthy gums. Vitamin C can be found in citrus fruits, dark green vegetables, potatoes, and tomatoes.

Avoid Sugary Snacks

The other side of nutrition is the list of foods and drinks to avoid. When helping your child to make healthy food choices, added sugar poses many health risks including:
  • Obesity
  • Type II Diabetes
  • Tooth decay
  • Heart disease
  • Liver disease
  • High blood pressure
When it comes to tooth decay, the problem with sugar is that it feeds the bacteria that live on your child’s teeth. As the bacteria consume the sugar, they excrete acid. This acid demineralizes teeth. The tooth’s molecular structure is weakened, leading to pits or cavities in the teeth. These cavities must be cleaned and filled to prevent the decay from progressing further into the tooth, further undermining its structural integrity.
Because of the health risks, sugary snacks such as candy, baked goods, soda pop, and even fruit juice should be given to children in moderation. When children do consume sugary snacks, they should brush their teeth to minimize the sugar that remains on their teeth to feed the bacteria.

Proper Cleaning Technique

There are many skills that adults take for granted, but children need to learn. Among these skills is tooth brushing and flossing. Flossing may seem simple, but there is a correct way to floss. The floss must not only pick out any food trapped between teeth, but must also clean the space between the gums and tooth root at the base of the teeth. This is a prime area for bacteria to accumulate and cause gum disease. If these bacteria and the food particles they consume are not cleaned out, the gums can swell leading to bad breath, painful gums, and bleeding.
Tooth brushing must also be taught. Brushing the teeth is primarily a matter of thoroughness. Teaching children to brush in a soft, circular motion from the gums to the crown of the tooth can help them to dislodge any trapped food particles from their teeth and remove any built-up plaque.
Plaque is a biofilm produced by the bacteria in your child’s mouth. Think of it as a slime layer that protects the bacterial colonies and helps them stick to the teeth. If plaque is not removed, the bacteria can reinforce the biofilm’s structure into a hard scale called tartar.

Mouth Guards

If your child is involved in sports, such as football, basketball, skateboarding, or other activities where tooth damage can occur, pediatric dentists recommend a mouthguard. Not only can a mouthguard protect the teeth and gums, but studies have also shown that mouthguards can reduce the risk of concussion.
As with many aspects of parenting, your child’s dental health can have a learning curve. However, teaching them nutrition and dental hygiene, taking them to pediatric dentists, and using mouth guards can be a good start.

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

5 ESSENTIAL DENTAL MILESTONES TO WATCH FOR IN YOUR CHILDREN

Raising a child means constant love and attention, especially when it comes to their health. After all, children are growing at a lightning-quick pace and it’s your responsibility to ensure they’re hitting all the necessary milestones as they age.
While it isn’t uncommon for some children to experience milestones at different times compared to their peers, most kids will follow the same pattern of dental milestones as they grow. If you’re a new parent, here are some of the primary milestones your licensed dentist will monitor in your child through the years.

Teething

Baby tooth eruption, also known as teething, occurs when your child first grows their baby teeth. This typically occurs before your child hits one year in age, but some children can develop their first teeth as early as three months old. More often than not, you’ll notice the bottom front teeth come in first, followed closely by the top front teeth. These teeth are then followed by the canines and molars, though these eruptions can also happen simultaneously.
This can be a painful time for children and often involves a lot of screaming and crying as they begin to grow. Children will often feel the need to chew on things in order to relieve some of the pressure in the gums. At this stage, it’s not uncommon for a child to refuse food or beverage because it hurts so much. Keep in mind, however, that the gums aren’t being cut or damaged as the teeth come in — this is a natural process that your child’s body accounts for by making room in the gums for the teeth to erupt.
Your child will likely have their full set of baby teeth by age three though some may have them all by age two. As soon as the first tooth comes in, however, it’s recommended that you bring them to a licensed dentist for a checkup. Family dentists are adept at identifying problems or abnormalities in your child’s mouth before they cause problems later on. Kids dentists can also offer great tips for oral hygiene and pain relief. In fact, it’s recommended that you should start cleaning your child’s gums with a damp cloth before teeth even erupt. When that first tooth comes in, it’s vital that you start a brushing routine to develop healthy habits in your children.

Thumb-sucking

Thumb-sucking is a coping mechanism that many children turn into a habit. Thumb-sucking can be a way to relieve pressure in the gums during teething, but many children turn to this harmful habit when they’re feeling stressed. In particularly severe cases of thumb-sucking, the development of the palate and jaw can be affected because of the pressure. While some degree of thumb-sucking is considered normal, be sure to check in with a licensed dentist to monitor the behavior — and your child’s development.

Losing the first tooth

Your child will often lose their first tooth around the age of five or six. This is an exciting time for your child since this loss paves the way for adult teeth to follow. If your child is nervous, however, you can always pull out the tooth fairy card to make it a more fun experience.
Baby teeth will continue to fall out over the course of the next few years. This can happen naturally or happen because of impact while playing or through sports. Ensure your child wears a mouthguard when they partake in team sports so a baby tooth doesn’t come out before it’s ready.

Braces

When your child has their full set of adult teeth — typically by age 12 — it’s time to consider braces. More often than not, your child will have misaligned teeth due to genetic reasons. Overcrowding, misaligned jaws, and other issues can make teeth crooked or create gaps between teeth. In severe cases, some children experience jaw pain because of an overbite or crossbite. This is the perfect opportunity to invest in braces.
Investing in braces early ensures that your child’s teeth will look good for years to come. This is also a great age to introduce braces since most other children will also have them around this time. Establishing healthy dental habits, such as flossing and wearing a retainer, is easiest at this age since younger children are more likely to form these habits than older kids. Talk to your licensed dentist about braces for your child if their teeth are crooked or if there are issues in your child’s jaw.

Wisdom teeth

Wisdom teeth are often the last dental milestone for your child. These pesky back molars can form anywhere between the ages of 16 through 24. While these teeth may have helped our ancestors replace missing teeth, they’re largely unnecessary in modern times. As a result, they often cause overcrowding in the mouth, increase in plaque, pain when they come in, and problems if they aren’t removed.
Luckily, a licensed dentist should have no problem getting rid of these malignant molars. When your child starts to experience dental pain because of wisdom teeth, refer to pediatric dentists for advice and preventative care tips.
There are a number of milestones your child will experience as they age. Here are just some of the dental milestones they might experience throughout their childhood.

Monday, June 17, 2019

Dangers of Plaque to Your Teeth

Bacterial plaque is a sticky buildup that develops on your teeth. Within 24 to 72 hours, plaque buildup turns into tartar and eventually results in gingivitis, which manifests in the form of inflamed, bleeding gums.

You can use plaque removal dental gel, plaque removing toothpaste, and tartar removing toothpaste to combat this condition. A high-quality, fluoride free toothpaste can also help.However, plague and tartar buildup doesn’t just threaten your dental health. It has also been found to affect other aspects of your health, even contributing to conditions like heart attacks and dementia.

Plaque is constantly forming on your teeth. Any time you eat or drink something with starches or sugars, bacteria releases acids which attack the enamel on your teeth. Because plaque is sticky, it basically holds a layer of acid up against your teeth constantly, which goes on to break down the enamel and cause serious tooth decay.

Before long, plaque leads to gingivitis—a condition involving swollen, tender gums, that occasionally bleed—which then leads to all-out gum disease. When periodontal (gum) disease develops, the gum tissue is drawn back away from the teeth, creating a perfect opportunity for bacteria to begin destroying the bone that supports your teeth underneath.

As of now, scientists have discovered links between periodontal disease and several severe health conditions, including heart disease, diabetes, dementia, Rheumatoid arthritis, and premature birth. It isn’t known for certain how periodontal disease contributes to these conditions, but some experts speculate that oral bacteria might escape into the bloodstream when gums are infected and bloody. This bacteria can then go on to cause injury to major organs.

A major common denominator, according to most experts, is inflammation. When periodontal disease manifests in the mouth, it causes inflammation of the gums, which could potentially spread to other parts of the body. Inflammation is a recognized condition underlying diseases like arthritis and heart disease.
There have been numerous studies over the years that found gum disease to correlate with poor heart health.

Also, people with diabetes are more likely to have gum problems than people who don’t. Again, this may be partly due to inflammation. It’s also probably because people with diabetes are more likely to develop infections of all kinds. Interestingly, periodontal disease has also been discovered to raise one’s risk of developing dementia later on in life. Poor dental health also seems to be correlated with other mental conditions, such as cognitive impairment and memory loss.

There was also a strong connection found between rheumatoid arthritis and bad gum health. As an autoimmune disease, arthritis is a condition involving painful joints and—you guessed it—inflammation. People with rheumatoid arthritis are more likely to have periodontal disease and missing teeth than people who don’t.

Interestingly, people with severe arthritis have been known to experience less swelling, pain, and stiffness after having treatment for periodontal disease.

When it comes to the link between gum disease and preterm birth, scientists have drawn conflicting conclusions. While some studies seemed to find that women with periodontal disease are more likely to give birth prematurely, other studies suggested no such correlation.

To prevent plaque buildup and the myriad of health conditions that can result from it, it’s important to use good oral hygiene, including plaque removal dental gel.

In addition, you should have your teeth cleaned by a dentist regularly. You may also ask your dentist if you should have a protecting sealant or coating applied to the back of your teeth, where most of the chewing is done, and where tooth decay usually starts.

Getting good plaque removal dental gel is an excellent first step to getting your plaque—as well as your oral and whole-body health—under control. Contact local Gainesville, VA Dentist to learn more. 

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

BACK TO SCHOOL SEASON IS COMING: HERE’S HOW TO MAKE SURE YOUR CHILD EATS A HEALTHY LUNCH

dentistSummer is coming to an end, and it won’t be long until the school season starts and parents have less control over their children — specifically, their diets. It’s one thing if you pack a lunch for your child each day, but if they’re eating food from the cafeteria, it’s important to be wary of each day’s choices. Eating the wrong foods can hurt not only your children’s overall health, but their dental health in particular. Here are just a few tips to help make sure your child or young teen is eating healthy meals throughout the entire school year.

Provide your child with their own (healthy) beverages so they don’t take a trip to the vending machines.

Everybody knows that sugary drinks are bad for your health and especially your teeth, but many schools stock their vending machines with the worst of the worst: energy drinks. As much as sports drinks are harmful to your teeth, dentists and researchers found that exposure to energy drinks such as Rockstar, Monster®, and Red Bull® resulted in twice as much enamel loss as exposure to sports drinks such as Powerade®, Gatorade®, and Propel® (3.1% to 1.5%). To prevent your child from the temptation, provide them with their own healthy beverages from home. Milk, unsweetened iced tea, and flavored water are all great options.

Pack a healthy snack for between meals.

Some students don’t have lunchtime until later in the afternoon, which means they’re usually hungry before they even get out of their last class. Help them resist cravings by packing them a healthy snack for before lunch. A granola bar, dry cereal, or a piece of fruit are all great options. You never know if the snack they ate before lunch is what prevented them from treating themselves to a sugary dessert.

Check the school lunch menu ahead of time.

Finally, it’s important to check the school’s lunch menu ahead of time to determine whether or not it’s a healthy option. When in doubt, pack your child’s lunch or buy the ingredients they need to make it for themselves. Communicating with your child or young teen is also important to ensure proper dental development and oral health education.
Ultimately, these tips can make sure your child or young teen takes care of their teeth throughout the entire school year. For more information about pediatric dentists, contact Smilez Pediatric Dental Group.

DON’T FALL FOR THESE MISLEADING MYTHS ABOUT FLUORIDE

dentistsOne 2012 study in the Journal of Pediatric Dentistry found that more than 65% of parents using bottled water did not know what levels of fluoride it contained. Knowing this, it’s clear to see that both children and adults alike are woefully misinformed about the essential facts of fluoride. Without further ado, let’s debunk some of the most misleading facts about how fluoride affects your teeth and overall dental health:

Fluoride is unsafe for young children.

Perhaps this misconception originated from someone who read a bit too much into the ‘do not swallow’ warnings on toothpaste tubes. But the fact is, fluoride is absolutely safe for young children. Moreover, kids dentists agree that fluoride is an essential component of oral health because it helps to strengthen the enamel. This is important to start from a young age. Make sure to encourage consumption of fluoridated water and twice-daily brushing with your child — their dentist will thank you.

Fluorosis is a common effect of ingesting fluoride.

While it’s true that fluorosis can result from ingesting too much fluoride, it’s very difficult to reach these levels of toxicity. If you have very young children, you may want to ask your dentist what the right amount of fluoride is. You should also double check with your dentist if you plan on using infant formula with fluoridated water — typically, infants should be drinking formula only with purified or distilled water. Still, the chance of fluorosis is very rare.

Fluoride causes cancer.

Finally, this outdated has been discredited long ago, but for some reason, it still scares some people who may not know the facts. Experts agree, however, that there is absolutely no evidence of any sort of connection between fluoride intake and bone cancer. Take it from Colgate Professional:
“The National Cancer Institute asserts, citing decades-long surveys by the Public Health Service and other national organizations and reviews of studies, that there is no association between fluoride and cancer. Years and years of epidemiological data support the safe use of fluoride,” writes Jen Collins.
Now that you know the real facts about fluoride, you can make the most informed decision for your family’s dental health. For more information about kids dentists, contact Smilez Pediatric Dental Group.