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Archive for May, 2018

Pediatric Dentistry FAQ; Baby’s First Toothbrush, Toothpaste, Dentist Visits, Dental Sealants & More

Smile Reef

As a parent there are many questions that you have. Kids don’t come with a manual and often you are either trying to fake it until you make it or ask advice from loved ones, but there is a time a or two you have to apply your research skills you learned in high school and find some answers for yourself. That is why we at Smile Reef have compiled a frequently asked questions list concerning pediatric dentistry for your convenience. We encourage you to ask any other questions not found here at your next visit or give us a call.

Pediatric Dentistry Information

What should baby’s first toothbrush be?
There are toothbrushes on the market that are especially designed for infants. A soft-bristled, small head toothbrush that should be used at least once a day but at bedtime is optimal. A toothbrush that will remove plaque bacteria that can lead to decay and easily fit in their tiny mouth is all you need. Do not use adult toothpaste; use the tiniest amount of baby toothpaste.
When should you take baby to the dentist for the first time?
To avoid oral hygiene issues it is ideal to bring them in between when their first tooth ruptures and not later than their 1st birthday.
What is the difference between a pediatric dentist and a family dentist?
A pediatric dentist has an additional 2-3 years of specialty training following dental school and exclusively extends their practice to treating children. Pediatric dentists provide oral care for infants and children through adolescence, as well as with children with special health needs.
Are baby teeth really important for my child’s oral development?
Baby teeth or primary teeth aid development in a number of ways. They help children with their speech and chewing development and contribute to forming a path that permanent teeth can erupt through easier.
What can I give my child for a toothache?
Start by having your child rinse the irritated area with warm salt water, following the rinse place a cold compress on the swollen area of the face if applicable. If there is any pain, give your child acetaminophen; avoid aspirin on the teeth or gums. Get your child to the dentist as soon as possible.
Are pacifiers and thumb sucking bad for child’s teeth?
Thumb and pacifier sucking habits will generally only become a problem the habit is long term. Most children grow out of these habits on their own. However if they are continuing to suck on their thumbs, fingers, or even pacifiers past the age of 3, your pediatric dentist might recommend a mouth appliance.
Can I prevent tooth decay caused by breastfeeding?
If at a possible, avoid nursing children to sleep and limit their bottle to only water for their bed-time bottle. Be sure to brush and floss your child’s teeth appropriately. Take your child to a pediatric dentist regularly to have their teeth and gums checked and if you not sure, ask how to perform the oral hygiene on your babies.
How often does my child need to see the pediatric dentist?
Each patient has individual needs and your pediatric dentist will make recommendation for your child, but generally a check-up every 6 months is recommended maintain a healthy mouth.
How soon should children be exposed to toothpaste?
Starting at birth, it is recommended that you clean your child’s gums with a soft infant toothbrush or cloth and water. A tiny smear of toothpaste is applicable when their first tooth erupts. Once children are 3 years old, increase the amount to a pea-size drop assist with your child’s tooth brushing care. Little ones don’t have the motor skills to brush their own teeth effectively, but before or after you do it, let them practice and encourage and praise their efforts. Teach your children to spit out excess toothpaste after brushing.
What are the best foods for dental health?
A balanced diet is ideal for kid’s oral development. Include a serving each of: fruits and vegetables, breads and cereals, milk and dairy products, and protein. Limit their sugar and starch intake to avoid early tooth decay.
What are dental sealants?
Sealants fill in crevasses found on the chewing surfaces of the teeth. This repels food particles that could get caught in the teeth that cause cavities. The treatment is fast and comfortable for your child. It is very effective in protecting teeth for many years.
Are dental X-rays safe?
There is little to no risk involved in dental X-rays. Pediatric dentists are especially trained and careful to limit the amount of radiation to which children are exposed to during the X-ray. With the use of lead aprons and high-speed film, safety is assured and minimize the amount of radiation.

Pediatric Dentistry in Las Vegas, Nevada

If your child is overdue for a dental checkup, call Smile Reef to schedule an appointment. We can meet all your pediatric dental needs!

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Autism & Dental Problems in Las Vegas, NV; How to Get an Autistic Child to Brush Their Teeth & More

Smile Reef

There are many unique challenges when caring for a child with autism, or any other development disabilities for that matter. Both dental providers and parents can have some demanding trials when helping these special little ones with their oral hygiene care. With the spectrum being wide, kids with autism can have various needs and where some can experience similarities, no two kids are alike. As with any child, it is essential that quality dental care is given throughout their life and where parents of an autistic son or daughter can be difficult at times, it is still important you diligently ensure they are given the best oral health care possible. With that in mind, we at Smile Reef would like to offer some tips and suggestions on taking care of the oral needs of an autistic child.

Dental Care Tips & Information for an Autistic Child

1) Brushing and flossing may require assistance from the parents, depending on the child’s individual’s abilities. These hygiene practices are very basic, it is essential they are not overlooked in an effort to protect their teeth from getting cavities and other oral issues. Many autistic children rely on routine. If you have not established oral practices in their daily schedule, implement it soon and make sure they are getting their teeth brushed the same time every morning and every night. If possible, have them do it, even if you have to do it first or after to make sure it is done thoroughly.
2) Consider getting sealants to protect the child’s molars from decay. Sealants are recommended for all children, but autistic children that have difficulty brushing can especially benefit.
3) Autistic children are especially sensitive to stimuli like sounds and tastes and can run into dilemmas during their dental visit. When you call for their appointment, let them know about their specific needs so the dentist staff can properly prepare for your child’s arrival and help their service be smoother.
4) Sedation can significantly help autistic children during particularly long dental procedures. They are calm throughout the entire visit, which keeps them safe and relaxed so the dental care is done more efficiently and makes for a better experience for everyone. Additionally, one of the side effects is that people do not remember the event during the sedation, which helps the autistic child more for future dental visits. Seeking out a dental professional that specializes in pediatrics and kids with special needs, such as Smile Reef, can make all the difference in the world for your child. These professionals are trained to interact with autistic children and with our experience, we see kids that are all over the spectrum and usually have the patience and compassion for kids with special needs.

Special Needs Dentistry

Helping your kids with their oral practice is important for their oral care as children but more so for the care of their oral health as they become adults. We at Smile Reef know the challenges of helping autistic kids and other children with development disabilities and we are readily available to provide the professional dental care your child needs. Call us today to schedule your child’s next appointment.

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