When children snack too much, and become lapse in brushing and flossing habits, this could be a recipe for cavities. Unfortunately, the pandemic has caused an increase in both! In today’s blog, your Richfield, MN, dentist will explain what you can do to help your children avoid the onset of tooth decay.
The Causes of Cavities in Little Smiles
The enamel that coats your child’s teeth (and your smile too) helps prevent issues like tooth decay and infection. However, when the enamel is compromised, this exposes the sensitive inner dentin and the pulp to bacteria, embarrassing painful cavities and eventually, an infection that causes issues with stability. The enamel could become damaged due to an accident, but more likely, the enamel is weakened and eroded due to plaque buildup caused by improper or infrequent brushing and flossing, or lack or professional cleanings. Warning signs include tooth sensitivity and toothaches.
Every six months, when you visit the office our team will remove all plaque and tartar from your child’s smile. The procedure only takes a few minutes and helps remove the buildup that weakens and erodes the enamel. We then polish the teeth too. We also examine the teeth, which enables us to diagnose the presence of weakened enamel or cavities, so we can administer treatment to prevent infections, such as a single-visit lifelike dental filling.
Fluoride and Sealants
We also offer care to help strengthen the outer enamel and protect the smile. For example, with fluoride treatments we apply a varnish to the teeth every six months during a checkup and cleaning visit. The fluoride varnish then strengthens the outer enamel. We could also apply sealants, which prevent food from becoming stuck between the hard-to-reach the rear teeth. The sealant lasts for between 5 and 10 years on average, and will wear away naturally with time. Even if they have difficulty brushing and flossing the rear teeth, we still lower the risk of tooth decay!
Better Care at Home
At home, you can take steps to help your child’s smile stay strong in between checkup and cleaning visits. For example, your child should brush twice a day for two minutes with an age-appropriate toothbrush ad a rice-sized blot of fluoride toothpaste. Kids also need to floss every evening before bed too. These actions remove stray food particles to reduce the severity of plaque buildup. If you have any questions about how we approach children’s dentistry, then contact our team today.
Your Richfield, MN Dentist’s Office Offers Children’s Dentistry
At our Richfield, MN dentist’s office, we know how to help kids of all ages avoid cavities. To find out more about our approach to pediatric dental care, then please call Cedar West Family Dentistry at (612) 861-7188.