Oral care is essential for your overall physical well-being. It helps keep several systemic diseases at bay! Good oral health in children is equally important since they will grow up into adults, inculcating the same oral hygiene habits taught during childhood. Regular dental exams and cleanings play a key role in your child’s oral health.
The pediatric dentist Thornton offers comprehensive dental exams and cleanings for children to improve the oral form, function, and aesthetics, laying a strong foundation for permanent dentition.
Are regular dental exams helpful for children?
Children are prone to dental problems like caries due to a lack of proper brushing and unhealthy eating habits. These together can increase plaque and bacterial accumulation leading to decay and other dental problems like gum disease. The developmental malalignment of teeth could increase the risk even more.
Dental examinations can help dentists and parents detect oral problems at an early stage and begin appropriate treatment.
What does a dental exam include?
During your dental visit, a comprehensive dental exam will be conducted. This will include the following:
- Evaluation of teeth
- Helps detect tooth decay using special dental instruments like probes and mirrors.
- Evaluation of gum disease
- Children may be prone to gum disease with symptoms like bleeding and gingival swelling.
- Assessment of existing fillings
- The pediatric dentist will evaluate existing fillings for the presence of any secondary caries.
- Dental X-rays
- Orthodontic problems like overbite, or deep bite are assessed through full mouth X-rays.
- This also helps to check the bone health and the underlying permanent tooth buds.
How can professional cleanings benefit children?
Professional dental cleanings help dentists eliminate plaque and calculus (hardened form of plaque) in order to prevent oral problems like caries, and gum disease. Children with malaligned teeth may also benefit greatly since orthodontic appliances (if any) can make regular brushing challenging paving the way to poor oral hygiene.
Dental cleaning involves the following:
- Supragingival scaling
- Eliminates plaque, bacteria, and calculus from above the gum line using either hand scalers or ultrasonic instruments.
- Teeth polishing
- The pediatric dentist will use an electric spinning tooth polisher (rubber cup) to polish the teeth using a fun flavored toothpaste.
- This helps to smoothen the surface, preventing bacteria and plaque adherence.
- Fluoride varnish
- The dentist will apply a thin coat of fluoride varnish using a Q-tip on the occlusal surfaces of the teeth to form a protective coating against caries-causing bacteria.
A pediatric dental exam and teeth cleaning a proactive measures to promote excellent oral health. You will be advised to schedule routine dental checkups for your children preferably once every six months.