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Preventive and Continuing Care
Preventive dental care during the early years of your child’s life leads to improved long-term oral health and reduced future dental costs. It also encourages a bright smile and overall confidence for your child!
At Smiles In Motion, our pediatric dental specialists provide individualized preventive and continuing care services tailored specifically for children from infancy through adolescence. Our team will customize a home preventive care program for your child by providing recommendations and instructions based on your child’s individual needs.
Following your initial visit, we recommend regularly scheduled continuing care appointments for your child to see their pediatric dentist at least twice a year. This ensures optimum oral health and allows prompt detection and resolution of any oral health issues that may arise.
Healthy oral habits at home and routine continuing care visits that may include teeth cleanings, x-rays, sealants, and fluoride treatments are vital to your child’s overall dental health.
Home care and in office preventive care recommendations vary greatly for infants, toddlers, school age and teenage children. At each visit we will give you customized recommendations for your child based on their age and their needs based on individual risk factors for cavities and many other oral health conditions.
As your child grows, our pediatric dental specialists will address age-appropriate oral health issues such as the increased likelihood of gum disease, proper growth and eruption of permanent teeth, evaluation for orthodontic needs, and discussion on the risks of oral piercings, smoking, and smokeless tobacco as needed during preventive and continuing care visits.
Pediatric Dental Procedures and Treatments
At your child’s dental visit, if a concern in detected by your pediatric dentist, all treatment options will be discussed with you in detail. Below is a summary of the most common pediatric dental treatment needs:
Pediatric Teeth Cleanings (Prophylaxis)
During continuing care appointments, when your child is able to tolerate the procedure, we will clean and polish their teeth.
Pediatric dental cleanings promote healthy gums and teeth by removing plaque and tartar above and below the gum line when necessary, eliminating bacteria that may lead to decay, bad breath, and gum disease.
A variety of radiographs may be necessary to obtain a complete and accurate picture of your child’s overall oral health and to detect all areas of decay. They are recommended based on your child’s risk of cavities and dental abnormalities as well as growth patterns.
Our pediatric dentistry offices are equipped with the latest and best technology available to make the dental x-ray process as safe as possible for kids, including digital radiography which reduces radiation exposure by 80-90%
Dental sealants are recommended for children particularly on 6-year and 12-year permanent molars. A sealant is a thin plastic coating that is applied to the chewing surface of a tooth.
The chewing surface is the most common place that a cavity forms, because of its deep pits and grooves. Sealants act as a barrier, protecting the tooth by “sealing out” plaque and food from settling into the pits and grooves.
Sealants are recommended shortly after the molars erupt. Sealants may be recommended on baby molars if the child has deeply stained grooves.
As part of preventive dental care, topical fluoride treatments may be applied to your child’s teeth. They are typically recommended because fluoride strengthens the enamel and is scientifically proven to reduce the risk of cavities forming.
At Smiles In Motion, we use fluoride varnish because it is safe, easy to apply, and highly effective. It adheres to the teeth so little to none is ingested. Fluoride varnish is safe and recommended for infants through adolescents based on a child’s risk of developing cavities.
Your pediatric dentist and dental hygienist will be happy to make recommendations for at home fluoride toothpaste and mouth rinse use based on your child’s needs.