There are some people that are not sure when to start taking their kids to the dentist. The great thing is that there are pediatric dentists that specialize in kids and you can always ask them what they think. Your child’s tooth development is something that starts well before you see any teeth actually cut through the gums. You want to make sure you do all that you can to make sure your child’s teeth are healthy. This means that taking them to the dentist is just as important as taking them in for shots and for appointments when they are sick and injured. The dentist is something that is a fear for some people no matter the age but you want to do what you can to make sure that your child does not have a fear. Smile Reef offers tips on how to help your child that might be scared to go to the dentist.
Schedule Meeting Appointment with Dentist
When your child is going to start a new school year they usually go and meet the teacher. If you are looking for a new doctor to deliver your baby you likely go in for a meeting to meet them and get to know if they are a fit for you. If you have a child that has a fear of the dentist you want to talk to the office about setting up a meeting. This is a great way to go into the office and get to know the dentist so that your child can form some sort of relationship with the dentist while no work is being done. They can ease into the appointment while having some familiarity with the dentist that they will see the next time they arrive.
Stay Positive About Pediatric Dentistry
One of the things that your kids will pick up on is how you feel and what you say about a topic. If you are one of the adults that also have bad feelings about going to the dentist it is best to keep them to yourself. If you talk about how scary it is your child will pick up on it and carry those feelings as well. It is best to use positive words when talking about the dentist and you can also use positive reinforcements as well. When they go to the dentist you can reward them with a fun outing or activity. This will help them know that the dentist visit will lead to a good reward. The more comfortable you are about the dentist the more comfortable your child will be as well.
Talk About Importance of Oral Hygiene
You also want to take time to teach your child what the purpose of the dentist is. They need to know they are there to make sure your gums and your teeth are healthy. It is a good time to talk about why they need to go and what the reason is. The more they understand about their oral health and the needs of the dentist the less scared they tend to be.
Smile Reef can make help to make sure that your child is comfortable with our dentist and our office. Call us today to meet our friendly staff.
Though they still lack much self-awareness over their own habits, kids may be hyper-aware of how other people behave. Even adults struggle to notice when they start clenching their own jaw when it comes to teeth grinding. It is especially important for parents to make themselves aware of the signs, causes, and treatment since children are more likely to grind their teeth than adults. With this mind, we at Smile Reef would like to discuss teeth grinding.
Awake & Nocturnal Sleep Bruxism
For jaw clenching and grinding teeth, Bruxism is the medical term. At least once a week, according to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM), 36% of preschoolers grind their teeth. If habits don’t change early up to 17% of all children regularly grind their teeth and one-third will carry the habit into adulthood overall. With stress, anxiety, or nervous habits, most people associate teeth clenching and grinding. This also might apply to children surprisingly. Especially in combination with withdrawn behavior while teeth grinding doesn’t seem to cause poor behavior in school, the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) says it does share a relationship.
Symptoms of Teeth Clenching & Grinding
It isn’t easy to spot, as bruxism has quite a few symptoms that can be extremely subtle so it takes a well-trained eye to notice. Some children and adults may realize they’re grinding their teeth or clenching their jaw but keep doing it. Some of the symptoms are listed below.
– Trouble sleeping or fear of going to bed due to associating sleep with pain.
– While the child watches TV, reads, studies, or focuses on a task, subtle mouth movements from clenching.
– Especially in the morning, sore or stiff jaw.
– A stiff jaw causing difficulty chewing.
– During tense situations for the child mouth movements, from clenching.
– From tension, frequent headaches and earaches are produced.
– While sleeping, chattering or grinding sounds.
Causes of Teeth Grinding
With each case is unique, we aren’t sure exactly what causes bruxism. Due to misaligned teeth, some children may clench. To ease pain and release endorphins others may pick up the habit while teething. In response to anxiety or nervousness, like nail-biting or picking, kids may also develop the habit as a response. Some kids may also unconsciously grind their teeth while they sleep.
There can be long-term effects in teen patients like an increased risk for TMJ, jaw problems, migraines, tooth sensitivity, and worn enamel while in not every case is an emergency. A personalized treatment is required since each case of teeth grinding is different. The treatments include the following:
– To address underlying stress therapy or counseling.
– To protect tooth enamel, proactive and defensive sealants.
– For unconscious sleep grinders, nighttime mouth guards.
– To correct alignment issues, braces are used.
Bruxism while awake suggests that the child is unknowingly picking up behaviors to manage daily stress, so talk therapy can help tremendously. Like adults, subconscious teeth clenching can be experienced by kids. In order to evaluate the child’s teeth and explore treatment options, a visit to the dentist is necessary, either way. Call Smile Reef and let us assist you.