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Archive for the ‘Pediatric Dentistry’ Category

Why Does My Child Have So Many Cavities? Sugary Foods, Bacteria, Dry Mouth & More

Smile Reef

Here at Smile Reef we frequently take care of the dental needs for siblings. It is not uncommon for one sibling to have more cavities than the other children on a routine basis. We will have parents ask us frequently why some of their children get more cavities than their other children. Smile Reef wants to explore some of the reasons for this today. We hope that you find the information below useful.

What Causes Tooth Decay?

Many people assume that you get more cavities if you are not brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing daily. Brushing and flossing definitely will help reduce the number of cavities that you get but they will not eliminate them all together. We have many patients that brush and floss just like they should every day and they will still get cavities. Some people are just more susceptible to cavities for a variety of reasons.
Sugary Foods & Drinks Cause Tooth Decay – The largest culprit for cavities is your diet. What you are putting into your body definitely impacts your oral health. When you eat or drink sugary foods or drinks the sugar sits in your mouth on your teeth and along your gum line. The sugar draws bacteria to it. Bacteria can erode your tooth enamel. Your teeth need strong enamel because that is what helps protect your teeth from decay. If your teeth get decayed you will get cavities. Simply cutting down on sodas, juices, sweets, and carbohydrates can help you have less cavities. We recommend that you replace those foods with delicious fruits and vegetables. Instead of drinking soda water is a significantly better choice for your oral hygiene. Many people choose to brush their teeth after eating lots of sugary foods.
Bacteria Causes Dental Caries – Cavities are formed when bacteria eats away at your teeth. The bacteria quantity in each person is unique. Some people have more bacteria in their mouth than others. The more bacteria you have in your mouth the more likely you are to develop cavities. Regular brushing and flossing will help combat aggressive bacteria in your mouth.
Dry Mouth Can Cause Cavities – Another cause of cavities is not having enough saliva in your mouth or having frequent dry mouth. Saliva serves many purposes in our bodies. Saliva helps you digest food and keep your mouth moist. The properties of saliva counteract the bacteria that cause cavities in your mouth. If you have frequent dry mouth try rinsing with mouth wash every day to enhance the enamel on your teeth. You will also want to drink plenty of water every day. If you still have dry mouth on a regular basis contact your doctor.
Cavity Prone Teeth Shapes – Sometimes your tooth shape makes you more susceptible to cavities than other people. If you naturally have more spaces in between your teeth food particles, sugars, and bacteria can easily catch in the spaces between your teeth and create a cavity. Some people have deep grooves on their teeth. These deep grooves also make you more susceptible to cavities. You will want to consider brushing teeth more frequently if you have this problem.

Pediatric Dentistry

Smile Reef hopes this helped you understand why some of your kids get cavities more frequently than others. You can help them by encouraging them to eat healthy foods, drink plenty of water, floss daily, and brush twice a day. Even if they do all of this they may still get cavities but at that point you can rest assured that you are doing everything you can do. Contact Smile Reef to schedule an appointment today!

Preparing Your Special Needs Child for Pediatric Dental Sedation & Anesthesia

Smile Reef

Special needs children often have to be sedated or require anesthesia to get their dental work done efficiently. When your child’s appointment approaches, it is natural for parents to become uneasy. There are many questions that come to mind and wanting to know what to expect when your child undergoes the anesthesia. How it is administered, how the child will experience the process, and how you should prepare for the procedure and take care of the child afterwards often top the list. There are many circumstances when anesthesia is utilized to help your child get the dental work they need to maintain healthy oral care. Today we at Smile Reef would like to elaborate on the use of the anesthesia.

Pediatric Dental Sedation Guidelines

Pediatric dentists that routinely care for children, especially those with special needs, often have an Anesthesiologist they use and trust to help them achieve their dental procedures. To help the child feel drowsy, the general anesthesiologist will give the child some oral medication first. From there, the child is put completely to sleep when the anesthesiologist starts an IV and administers the right dosage of drugs. While the pediatric dentist provides all necessary treatment, the anesthesiologist monitors the child’s breathing and vital signs once the child is completely asleep. The biggest advantage to the anesthesia is that they are sleeping throughout the dental procedures and they will not have any traumatizing association to getting dental work. In many instances the medications used will help the child forget about the whole event during the dental experience. All treatment, including x-rays, fillings, crowns, and cleanings can be done more efficiently while the child is asleep and immobile which helps the experience go by smoothly without the traumatic and seemingly scary activities going on around the child to be affected.

Preparing Your Child for Anesthesia

Generally, the dentists that suggest the help of an anesthesiologist will schedule the procedure coherent with both of their schedules. Instructions are frequently given to the parents on how to prepare the night before the procedure. A medical history and pertinent information is often asked prior to the appointment so that the right choice of anesthetic medicines is used to better fit the individual child’s needs. Typically, you will be instructed on what your child can eat or drink before the procedure. Usually, they are not allowed to eat or drink anything after midnight. However, specific instructions based on your child’s age, medical condition, and the time of day of the procedure will be given. Eating is not allowed because of the effects anesthesia medicines have. The body normally has reflexes that prevent food from being aspirated, or inhaled, into the lungs when it’s swallowed or regurgitated, or thrown up. The medicines can suspend these reflexes, which could cause food to become inhaled into the lungs if there is vomiting or regurgitation under anesthesia. In some cases, clear liquids may be permitted, or specific medications may be given a few prior to the appointment. Answer the anesthesiologist’s questions as honestly and thoroughly as possible to ensure the child’s safety. What you may think is harmless can have poor interactions with the anesthesia.

Pediatric Dentistry

If you have any questions regarding the anesthesia, you have ample opportunity to consult the anesthesiologist. If you feel your child may batter benefit from being sedated for their dental procedure, make an appointment with Smile Reef today to discuss your child’s needs.