Baby teeth are important teeth, forming a foundation for good oral health and smile aesthetics that last a life time. Dr. Mike Atwood loves serving his youngest patients through innovative and gentle pediatric dentistry. He carefully evaluates and treats teeth, gums and even developing bone structure for best functioning and best looking young smiles.
Pediatric Dentistry Begins Early
Dr. Atwood and his dedicated team like to see children when that first little tooth erupts, or by their first birthday at the latest. This first dental appointment is a fun, get acquainted visit so child and parent get used to the sights and sounds of pediatric dentistry. At age 3, Dr. Atwood performs a comprehensive oral exam, checking for decay, gum disease and tooth and jaw development. He advises 6-month cleanings and visits for all children and adults to detect any oral health problems before they become costly and complicated.
The Particulars of Pediatric Dentistry
Parental involvement in kids' oral health helps prevent tooth decay--the number one chronic health problem in American children. The staff at Atwood Family Dentistry & Orthodontics teaches kids and parents that mom and dad must brush toddlers' teeth for them and supervise kids at least up to the age of 8. Twice daily brushing with a soft-bristled brush and a small amount of fluoride toothpaste is the rule, and parents must realize that young children do not have the dexterity to brush and floss by themselves.
Dr. Atwood also stresses nutritious, low-sugar diets and drinking plenty of water to wash tooth surfaces and promote production of saliva. Saliva keeps teeth and gums clean--important in between meals and during the night.
Additionally, the pediatric dentist often recommends fluoride treatments and plastic sealants for young teeth--particularly molars that have intricately-grooved chewing surfaces. These simple "painted-on" dental materials quickly and comfortably provide protection against decay, and for adults, fluoride reduces dental sensitivity.
The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry advises that any decay found in children's teeth be treated. The health and development of baby teeth impacts how their adult teeth look, function and erupt into the mouth. Furthermore, it's wise for children to receive a complete orthodontic evaluation by age 7. Early orthodontic treatment wards off problems from crooked teeth later on in life--decay, gum disease and self-image issues specifically. Early intervention takes advantage of the developing jaw, making treatment easier and less complex than older teen or adult treatment.
Want to learn more about children's dentistry from Vista Dental?
Call our Medicine Hat, AB dental office at (403) 548-7077 today to book an appointment