A Child’s First Visit
You should bring your child in for his/her first dental visit should be around his/her second birthday. The most important part of the visit is getting use to the dentist and the practice environment. A pleasant and comfortable first visit builds trust and helps put the child at ease during future dental visits.
Thumb Sucking and Lip Sucking:
Thumb sucking is a normal and healthy activity that provides comfort and security for an infant, but prolong thumb sucking can lead to problems in the mouth.
Thumb sucking after permanent teeth have erupted (usually by five years of age), can create many problems. The child’s supporting bone structure may shift, causing misalignments in the jaw and roof of the mouth. The child’s teeth may shift, resulting in an overbite of teeth.
Thumb sucking can affect their speech, making it difficult to pronounce certain words. The severity of damage that thumb sucking can cause to the mouth depends on the regularity and intensity of thumb sucking.
A child sucking the lower lip either by using the upper teeth or during thumb sucking may face the same problems as a thumb sucker.
Early Childhood caries
Early childhood caries (ECC) (previously termed ‘nursing caries’ and ‘baby bottle tooth decay’) is defined as the presence of one or more decayed, missing or filled tooth surfaces in the primary teeth in a child 71 months of age or younger. This decay is associated with food and liquids (e.g, milk, breast milk and juices) bathing the teeth for extended periods of time without a balance of gum and tooth-brushing practices. The longer food remains in the mouth, the higher the child’s risk of developing ECC.
Preventing Baby Bottle Tooth Decay
Tooth decay in infants can be prevented by not allowing your child to sleep with a bottle or with the breast. Infants that need a bottle to comfortably fall asleep should be given a water-filled bottle or a pacifier. He/she should be weaned from the bottle at 12-14 months of age and should be encouraged to drink for a cup. If you have any concerns regarding your child’s teeth contact us as soon as possible.
What should I do if my child’s baby tooth is knocked out?
Contact your pediatric dentist as soon as possible. The baby tooth should not be replanted because of the potential for subsequent damage to the developing permanent tooth.
What should I do if my child’s permanent tooth is knocked out?
Find the tooth and rinse it gently in cool water. (Do not scrub or clean it with soap — use only water!) If possible, replace the tooth in the socket immediately and hold it there with clean gauze or a wash cloth. If you can’t put the tooth back in the socket, place the tooth in a clean container with cold milk, saliva or water. Get to the pediatric dental office immediately. (Call the emergency number if it’s after hours.) The faster you act, the better your chances of saving the tooth.
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