If you are a new parent, you may be concerned about the oral health of your little one. In addition, you may not know what to expect from the dental treatment that your child may receive in first few years of life. Here is a bit of information to help you understand the treatments and suggestions that your child's dentist may offer:
Your youngster's dentist may suggest that you wean your child as soon as possible.
If your child's first teeth have erupted, his or her dentist may suggest that you wean the youngster as soon as possible. Prolonged use of the bottle is associated with a serious condition called bottle mouth. The condition, which is characterized by primary teeth that are darkened by dental decay, occurs when a child sucks a bottle regularly.
Many children are allowed to sleep or rest with a bottle in their mouth. This encourages the contents of the bottle, which usually consist of milk or juice, to pool on the teeth. Bathing the teeth in a sugary liquid, even if the sugar is a natural sugar, such as lactose or fructose, provides the oral bacteria in your child's mouth with food. As the microbes consume the sugars, they release decay-causing acid that corrodes your child's tooth enamel. The decay of the teeth is further promoted during times of rest, because saliva production is reduced when your child sleeps.
Your child's dentist may suggest that you begin the weaning process by replacing the milk or juice in your little one's bottle with water only.
Your child's dentist may prescribe dental sealants.
To protect your youngsters teeth, especially the molars, which are prone to decay, a pediatric dentist may suggest dental sealants. The sealants, which are made of resin, a plastic commonly used in dentistry, are applied to the chewing surfaces of the back teeth. The sealants provide a barrier between the teeth and decay-causing substances, such as bacterial acid and dental plaque.
The application of the sealants is not painful, and the procedure is not lengthy. In addition, once the sealants are in place, they protect the teeth of your youngster for years. If the sealants do start to wear away, the dentist can reapply them.
To learn more, schedule a consultation with a children's dentist in your area. Be prepared to discuss the age of your child and any oral health issues during the appointment.