Pediatric Dentistry in Sewell
Information provided by Connolly Family Dentistry
The American Dental Association recommends that children first see a dentist close to their third birthday. In this office, we take special pride and care when seeing a child for their earliest dental appointments. Parents are invited to watch their children during that important initial visit and the subsequent check-up appointments. Many times, photos are taken as we strive to keep the atmosphere exciting and non frightening – an important part of growing up!
It is very necessary that young children get into the routine of having dental check-ups every 6 months. Seeing your children regularly allows us to help prevent tooth decay and infection through early intervention utilizing oral hygiene instruction, fluoride treatments, and even sealants for the tiny grooves in young teeth. Such dental care serves to avoid unnecessary distress for parent, child and the dental care-givers, as the young patients gain confidence and become comfortable in their entire dental experience. We understand that some young people are exceedingly anxious about their dental appointments and in such cases the use of Nitrous Oxide or laughing gas may help to effectively relax them through their treatment. It is extremely important to everyone in this office that our patients, regardless of their age, trust each of our doctors, hygienists, assistants and auxiliary staff. We all work together for the good of our patients. And we take pride in the fact that our office’s atmosphere is so pleasant that most of our patients, especially the pediatric ones, actually look forward to their dental appointments.
Early check-ups for children are not limited to diagnosing and treating dental issues. Even our youngest patients sometimes evidence symptoms of more serious health problems such as GERDS. While more information on this topic is available within this web site, it is important to know that our doctors are trained to recognize the indications of many physical ailments in both adults and children, and routinely advise patients to see their family physician for conclusive diagnosis.
TMJ problems are becoming more prevalent among young children. Biking accidents, contact sports and just normal childhood “collisions” can lead to serious damage and deformities within the Temporal Mandibular (jaw) Joint. Another common problem that we are seeing is the consequence of the nocturnal grinding of teeth (bruxism). Often believed to be caused by stress or simply “growing pains,” a more correct clinical explanation seems more helpful. The child is gaining permanent teeth and losing baby teeth simultaneously, and sometimes certain teeth get in the way. The normal response by the young one is to subconsciously “brux” or grind the away at the interfering teeth. This type of normal Bruxing will usually diminish over time.
Questions about the ideal toothpaste to use for children are common because of the confusion created by so many available options. Generally, whitening toothpastes or toothpastes containing baking soda are more abrasive to the teeth and so, are not necessarily good choices for youngsters. Importantly, children should use Fluoridated toothpaste that contains a recommendation from the American Dental Association. If a young child has decay problems, we often advise an appropriate fluoride rinse. As with all products containing fluoride, patients should use caution not to ingest more than unavoidable residual amounts.
Constantly active, children are consequently prone to accidents which very often involve their teeth and mouth. Understanding this reality, we welcome young emergency patients and our expanded office hours can be very accommodating. However, we strongly encourage families to come in for their regular check-ups, which help establish a comfortable relationship between our staff and our patients – the big ones and the little ones. This will do so much to minimize stress and allow for the very best of care, no matter what the dental dilemma.