Cleanings and Exams
Children, just like adults, should have their teeth professionally cleaned and examined at least twice a year. During their cleanings, we remove all buildup from the surfaces of their teeth, including tartar. Cleanings are designed to help prevent cavities and other oral health issues from occurring. During their exams, we can check their teeth and gums for signs of issues and provide treatment if we do find anything.
Dental x-rays are an important part of regular dental exams. With these images, we can spot cavities between the teeth as well as monitor the development of adult teeth and the jaw. They can also be a crucial component in determining the need for your child to have orthodontic treatments.
Additional Preventative Treatments
Children tend to be more prone to developing cavities. We offer additional treatments to help prevent cavity formation and protect the oral health of your child. Two popular cavity prevention treatments commonly used for children are fluoride treatments and dental sealants. Fluoride is important for protecting the enamel from the acid attacks of plaque and bacteria. While fluoride can be replaced through drinking treated water and fluoridated oral care products, these may not be enough. Fluoride treatments are a topical application. The fluoride absorbs directly into the enamel, strengthening the teeth of your child.
Sealants are an application designed to protect the chewing surfaces of the molars. These areas contain deep crevices that can collect food particles and bacteria that your child may not be able to remove effectively. Sealants are designed to cover over these crevices, preventing food and bacteria from getting trapped and making the teeth easier to keep clean.
Preparing Your Child for Their Visit
The dentist can be a scary thing for a child. There are things that you can do at home to prepare them. Tell your child about the appointment ahead of time, giving them time to prepare mentally. Answer questions, but do not go into too much detail. Avoid using scary words. You can also read books about going to the dentist or even play pretend to help prepare your child for what to expect.
Once in the office, we do our best to help keep your child at ease. We speak to your child in a calm, gentle tone and avoid using scary words like shot, pain, or hurt. We also show your child our tools and explain what we are going to do with them before we do it. This can help to ease any anxiety your child may feel and help them to learn to trust us.
Fostering good oral care habits in your child now will benefit them for years to come. If you have any questions or concerns or want to make an appointment for your child, call Shenandoah Family Dentistry today at (540) 773-0011.