Signs Your Child May Need Early Orthodontic Treatment | Ontario Kid's Dentist

Children should start seeing the dentist early in life. The general recommendation is to make an appointment for your children within approximately six months of their first tooth or by their first birthday, whichever one comes first. During this visit, your child gets an examination that helps to determine the overall health of their teeth. In most cases, very little treatment is performed during this initial visit.

What to Expect During Your Child’s First Dental Appointment

When you take your child to their first dental appointment, they will ask questions about your child’s dental and overall health. This includes discussing developmental issues that you might have and answering any of your questions regarding your child’s dental care. Other components of this appointment generally include:

  • Examine the teeth that your child has to look for any signs of decay
  • Look at your child’s bite to determine if there are any issues
  • Evaluate the jaw, gums and oral tissues to look for possible problems
  • If it is needed, the dental hygienist will assess to see if fluoride is needed and clean your child’s teeth

When Your Child’s Dentist May Recommend Early Orthodontic Treatment

There are some signs to look out for that could determine that your child needs orthodontic intervention early in their life. One of the most common is crowded teeth. If your child’s jaw is too narrow and small, their teeth may not have enough room, so they start to appear crowded. With early intervention, childrens braces might not be needed. Instead, the dentist could recommend a palatal expander to help ensure that there is enough room without having to remove any of your child’s teeth.

Protruding teeth is another issue to look for. It can occur as a result of growth or due to thumb sucking, especially after age four. When teeth are protruding, there is a risk for cracked or broken teeth. Once kids are older, this could result in the need for more invasive dental work, so solving the problem early in life can save them time and discomfort.

There are other things to look for that could warrant the need for orthodontics, including:

  • Your child has their mouth open a lot because this can cause crooked teeth and improper jaw development
  • Your child breaths through their mouth a lot since this can result in a gap at the front of the mouth between the bottom and top teeth, known as an anterior open bite
  • When swallowing, your child moves their lips as this can cause misaligned teeth
  • Teeth grinding and snoring may indicate issues like narrow arches, bad bites and crowded teeth
  • If your child’s lower jaw grows faster than their upper jaw, this could result in an underbite which could cause the need for extensive treatment in the future
  • If your child has issues with speaking or chewing, it could mean that their bite is misaligned

If your child’s primary teeth fall out either too soon or too late, this could result in problem’s with tooth positioning once their permanent teeth erupt and start to grow. Your dentist can provide you some guidance on what to expect once your child starts to grow their primary teeth so that you can keep track of how long they remain.

Benefits of Getting Orthodontic Work Early in Life

Getting early orthodontic treatment helps to ensure adequate space for the child’s incoming adult teeth. It can be beneficial for the following reasons:

  • Help with tongue thrusting, thumb sucking and other habits that could be the reason for developmental issues
  • Accommodating emerging teeth by guiding jaw growth
  • Reducing the need for future dental corrections that could be more invasive
  • Correcting a variety of bite issues, such as cross bite, open bite and deep bite
  • Decreasing the chances of protruding teeth damage
  • Enhancing a child’s self-esteem by helping to improve the look of their smile

Early Orthodontic Treatment for Your Child

If your child requires orthodontics between ages two and six, the primary goal is to use dental appliances to correct problems and aid you and your child in eliminating bad habits, such as frequent thumb sucking or pacifier use.

With early intervention, your child’s dentist works to ensure that both dental arches are the appropriate width. With proper width, once your child starts to grow their permanent teeth, there will be enough room for them to come in properly.

Seeing your Ontario children's dentist on a regular schedule helps to keep your child’s oral health in good condition. Whether they need early orthodontic treatment or just general examinations and cleanings, this will go a long way in helping your child to achieve a confident smile. Just be sure to choose the best kids dentist so that you are both comfortable during the appointments.


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Wisdom Teeth: To Extract or Not to Extract? | Ontario Kid's Dentist

You’ve had smooth sailing with your kid’s dental health until the wisdom teeth arrive. Also known as the third molar, a wisdom tooth will first erupt between 17 and 20. They are only four, but their arrival can be problematic. Since other teeth have already set in, the third molars can lack space to grow. As such, they will get impacted inside the gum or erupt partially. Sometimes, it is because the jaw is still too small, and it can’t accommodate all the teeth at once.

Around 10 million people have one or more of their wisdom teeth removed each year. Most of these extractions are done on young people in their late teens or early adulthood. The first indication that your wisdom tooth is experiencing trouble while erupting is severe pain at the jaw’s end. This is an urgent time to look for a good Ontario children's dentist. If the issue is left untreated, it could advance to a more serious dental problem. Your childrens oral health and their general health is your primary concern. Therefore, you need to look for the best kids dentist in Ontario. They will assure you with the safe removal of the tooth.

 

Reasons for Extracting Wisdom Teeth in Kids

 

Everyone hopes to have all their thirty-two teeth remain intact throughout their lifetime. But you will give up this hope when one of your teeth is causing you sleepless nights. The pain can be unbearable for kids, and the only solution is to have the tooth removed. Sometimes, the impacted tooth will not be painful or swollen, but your dentist will still recommend an extraction. An x-ray of the third molars can reveal issues that may cause problems in the future. The best solution is to have it extracted now than later. Other reasons for extraction include:

• Impaction of a wisdom tooth: If the space left for your wisdom tooth to grow is small, it may remain underneath the gum.
• Injury to adjacent teeth: If the wisdom tooth lacks space to erupt, it will cause crowding and eventually damage the adjacent teeth.
• Dental cavities: A wisdom tooth that is partially erupted is hard to reach when brushing. Therefore, there is an accumulation of plaque, which could encourage the buildup of harmful bacteria. The result could be dental cavities.
• Gum disease: Other than dental cavities, the impaction of the third molars can lead to gum disease. It is caused by bacteria.
• Misalignment: Sometimes, a tooth can begin to grow in an incorrect angle. As it grows, it will press and exert pressure on nearby teeth.
• Orthodontic work: You can be advised to remove a wisdom tooth if there is a possibility of your child wearing braces in the future.

 

Symptoms of Problematic Wisdom Teeth

 

A good and reliable Ontario children's dentist will advise you to have your kid’s teeth checked regularly. But more importantly, a visit to the dentist in the late teen years is essential. At this time, the third molars are erupting. Your child may experience some signs which indicate that a wisdom tooth is growing. They include the following:

• Tension and pain at the back of the jaw
• Sudden crowing or shifting of other teeth near the erupting tooth
• Inflammation of the gum around the molar
• Severe tooth decay
• Gum swelling at the rear of the jaw
• Infection that is recurrent in the mouth

 

The Procedure of Extracting a Wisdom Tooth

 

If the affected tooth is mildly painful and inflamed, the dentist will not remove it immediately. They might observe it for a while to see if it will vent out naturally. But if the symptoms are severe, your child might be required to undergo more rigorous procedures.

The first thing is to have a dental X-ray. The aim here is to determine whether the removal of your child’s tooth is essential. If they find it necessary, then the process of preparing for surgery will commence. Removing a wisdom tooth is a simple procedure. It can last for an hour and a half, depending on the severity of the condition. Sedation is done to ensure the comfort of the patient during the surgery. Your dentist may administer local or general anesthesia.

In general anesthesia, your child will be put to sleep as the surgery is conducted. The advantage of this method is that your child will not remember the distress associated with the procedure. On the other hand, local anesthesia involves numbing the tissues around the affected tooth. In this method, the patient will bounce back to regular routines right after the surgery. However, your dentist might not recommend local anesthesia if the process is complicated. Your child can suffer anxiety attacks if they witness such an event.

 

Risks Involved During Extraction

 

Like other surgical procedures, there are several risks involved in the extraction of a wisdom tooth. They include the following:

• Bleeding for more than 24 hours
• Trismus – pain and difficulty when opening the mouth
• Excess inflammation and pain in the socket where the tooth was removed
• Numbness of the mouth long after the surgery which is an indication of nerve injury
• Damage of dental work of the adjacent teeth such as roots, bridges, and crowns
• The gum healing unusually slowly
• Post-surgery infection

These problems are not common and may be resolved using medication prescribed by your child’s dentist.

 

Post-operative care

 

Some discomfort might be experienced after the operation. It is typical for all dental procedures. To help manage this discomfort, your dentist may prescribe some medication. The first few days will determine how the healing process proceeds. Therefore, be extra careful during these days. Feed your child with soft food that won’t require much grinding. They should also avoid excessive movement of the jaw. If abnormal signs arise, inform your dentist immediately.

Your childrens oral health matters a lot to you. As such, the decision to have their teeth removed is not an easy one. Find the best kids dentist in Ontario to help you make an informed decision.

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Tips On Managing Your Child’s Dental Anxiety | Ontario Chilren's Dentist

Nobody likes going to the dentist, but for thousands of children across the country going to the dentist can be a traumatic experience. Some dental anxiety is caused by dentists and hygienists who unintentionally scare and intimidate the kids. However, even if you send your child to the best kids dentist in the country, they might still develop intense dental anxiety that makes them reluctant to go back. Going to the dentist becomes a battle that involves arguing with your child, dragging them to the car, and driving them to the clinic while they're screaming all the way.

 

It's easy to dismiss this kind of anxiety as bad behavior that should be disciplined. The truth is, children have reasons for being scared of the dentist. Medical procedures can be traumatizing to children, no matter how minor they are. When you take your child to the dentist, it's important that you help them have a positive experience that they'll remember fondly, instead of a scary one that leaves them traumatized. Here's some tips on making their next trip to the dentist a safe and comfortable one.

 

What Causes Childhood Dental Anxiety?

 

Before you can help treat your child's anxiety, it's important to know what might have caused it. At first, you might be bewildered. You sent your child to a children's dentist who knows how to work with kids. Why would they have anxiety? Children process situations differently than adults, and even a simple thing like going to the dentist can be scary and traumatizing.

 

As Ask the Dentist points out, fear of pain can be a primary reason why your child hates going to the children's dentist. Even if they don't undergo any serious procedures, having your teeth polished, scraped and flossed can be an uncomfortable experience. Any adult knows that it's no fun sitting in a dentist chair while the hygienist scrapes plaque off your teeth. If your child does undergo a procedure, like having a cavity filled, that makes the experience even scarier.

 

It's also important to remember that children don't have the same frame of reference that adults do. We know what's going on when we go to the dentist, but children are too young to understand. In their minds, their parents drag them to a strange place where they're trapped in a chair while bright lights shine in their faces and strange people stick sharp, painful tools in their mouth. Until they reach a certain age, they're simply too young to know what's going on.

 

Many children also feel anxious because they have no control over the situation. They're simply told by their parents that they "have" to go to the dentist, with no explanation. And once they're at the children's dentist, they have no control over the strange, confusing ordeal that they're about to go through. If their initial impression of the dentist is strange and frightening, they'll hold on to that impression for years, even when they're old enough to know what's happening.

 

How Can You Manage Your Child's Dental Anxiety?

 

In recent years, there's been a great deal of research dedicated to making dentistry calming and pain-free, for both children and adults. A positive experience starts with you: the parent.

 

To start off, Turn Around Anxiety recommends that you keep your child informed so they know what's going to happen. Describe the procedures that might be performed in their upcoming visit and explain that it's a positive thing that will keep their teeth healthy. Your child will feel less anxious if they know what to expect from their visit. Don't use language that might frighten your child, like telling them that the dentist will "scrape plaque off their teeth"--instead, tell them that the dentist will clean their teeth with their safe, handy tools.

 

On a similar note, if you've had bad experiences at the dentist, don't talk about it in front of your child. They'll absorb what you're saying and be wracked with anxiety when it's time to take them to your local Ontario dentist.

 

It also helps if you find a clinic that specializes in pain-free dentistry. These clinics work exclusively with children and are dedicated to making their visits as comfortable and relaxing as possible. Both the dentists and hygienists take every opportunity to reassure your child, make them feel like they have some level of control, and make the process painless and efficient. Your child might actually want to visit the dentist again, instead of dreading it, and your days of dragging a kicking and screaming toddler to the car will be over.

 

Some children's dentists even have therapy dogs that the children can interact with during their visit. Wouldn't you feel more enthusiastic about going to the dentist if you knew you'd get to play with cute puppies? A therapy dog stays with your child throughout the appointment and helps the child focus on the cute dog instead of whatever the dentist is doing.

 

What Should You Do When the Appointment is Over?

 

Your efforts to make the experience positive shouldn't end after your child leaves the dentist's office. While you're in the car, reinforce to your child that getting their teeth clean keeps them strong and healthy, and you're proud of them for doing so well. You can even reward your child with a small treat or a trip to the park so they feel like they have something to look forward to afterward.

Overall, it's in everyone's best interest to make sure your child has a happy, pain-free experience. Your child won't be afraid to visit their Ontario dentist, you'll have an easier time getting there, and they'll build healthy dental habits that will stay with them for years to come. When it comes to your children, don't settle for anything less. Look for the best kids dentist in Ontario that specializes in pain-free dentistry.


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Teething Toddler? Safely Soothe Your Baby’s Pain | Ontario Children's Dentist

Baby Teeth Growth

 

While an adult will have around 32 teeth, babies are born with 20 teeth beneath their gums. The period when they start growing above the gum line is known as teething.

Baby teeth generally begin coming in around 4 to 7 months but sometimes not until the 12-month mark. All 20 baby teeth should be in place by the time a child is 3 years old.

There is a general order teeth come in. Normally, the two front bottom teeth come in first, followed by the two opposite top teeth, known as the central incisors. Next, the lateral incisors on the top come in, followed by the incisors on the bottom. The frontmost top and bottom molars come in next, followed by the canines. Finally, the molars furthest to the back of the mouth come in.

 

Surefire Signs of a Teething Baby

 

While not all babies display signs of teething other than teeth poking through their gum line, there are normally a couple of signs you should begin monitoring their tooth growth.

These include:

  • gums that are red, swollen and tender
  • chewing or gnawing on non-food items
  • irritability
  • excessive drooling
  • a rash from drooling

A rash from drooling will appear most commonly in the face. It is caused by the bacteria and food particles in your toddler's saliva, since this isn't a time when they're able to keep their mouth clean with toothpaste yet.

Irritability is caused by gum pain as the teeth surface above the gums.

Toddlers will normally try to gnaw on either your arm or their own if they're teething.

 

Rarer Teething Symptoms

 

Some toddlers display more or different symptoms of teething than others. Here are a few other symptoms:

  • a fever under 101 degrees Fahrenheit
  • a decreased appetite
  • cheek rubbing
  • changes in sleeping patterns

Cheek rubbing is a child's way of massaging pain or irritation out of the gum area.

Like any other growing pain, teething pain will keep a child awake at night until it subsides or until the child is just too tired to stay awake. Similarly, a decreased appetite means that their gums are more sensitive than before teething.

 

Signs Unrelated to Teething

 

Some websites llist cold symptoms and diarrhea as symptoms of teething. However, trusted organizations like the American Dental Association, the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry and the American Academy of Pediatrics identify these as false symptoms.

If your child displays any of these symptoms, schedule an appointment with a pediatrician:

  • diaper rash
  • a fever over 101 degrees Fahrenheit
  • congestion
  • diarrhea
  • vomiting
  • coughing

 

Remedies To Ease Teething Pain

 

Cold water is known to reduce swelling. Wet a cloth with cold water and gently rub your child's gums with it. You can also use your finger to massage the gum line if you clean it and apply cold water to it. 

Another idea is to rub your toddler's gums with a chilled spoon. Never leave a teething baby unsupervised with a hard metal or frozen spoon, as they could hurt their gums with it. An even safer idea is to give them hard rubber teething rings to gnaw on. Refrigerate them first.

If your child is in pain from teething, ask your pediatrician what over-the-counter medicines and dosages your child can consume. Certain children's oral health care products containing the anesthetic benzocaine should be avoided. If you think your baby might need ibuprofen and acetaminophen for pain relief, consult your doctor.

 

Remedies To Avoid

 

While the teething phase will likely irritate your toddler, it would be better to avoid remedies and pain relief altogether than to resort to some commonly-marketed remedies.

One such remedy is teething necklaces. The beads on these can break off and your baby could choke. In addition, if they wear the necklace on their neck, they could suffocate. Any metal beads or other hard material like wood, amber, silicone and marble could also cut their mouth. The same applies to bracelets.

Don't give your child teething toys made of gel, liquid or plastic. Generally, these are designed to freeze like ice packs. For this reason, they could easily break if frozen and then chewed on. Another reason they're a bad investment is because if they do break, they could infect any open wounds in the gums. Anything too cold or hard may do more harm than good.

Always be wary of homeopathic or alternative medicine. It is not FDA approved. Avoid teething tablets. These contain traces of belladonna, a toxic plant substance. Additionally, avoid gels or creams that you rub on your toddler's gums. Your child's saliva will wash these away quickly. Many of these gels contain benzocaine, which is not safe for anyone under two years of age to consume. If too much of this gets in your toddler's bloodstream, it will deprive their red blood cells of oxygen.

 

Professional Help During The Teething Period

 

After your child's first tooth appears, consider taking them to their first dental visit. Their first tooth should appear by the time they hit their first birthday.

If they have a few teeth already, you want to ensure that they don't get cavities. You don't want your kid to lose their first few primary teeth so soon. Primary teeth are important because they allow your toddler to move beyond eating baby food to hard foods, and they help them develop their speaking skills.

It is typical to schedule dental checkups every six months. However, your circumstances may vary depending on your child's oral hygiene. Visit our Ontario children's dentist website to see if we're the best kids' dentist for your child in the area.

 


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Dental Radiographs (X-Rays) for Children | Kid's Dentist Ontario

What Are Dental Radiographs?

X-rays are like the window to the inside of the teeth, bones, and surrounding tissues of the oral cavity. Without radiographs, the dentist cannot see what issues may be causing pain or discomfort in the underlying tissues and structures. Dentists recommend having a set of x-rays taken once a year for yearly exams on every adult patient. The American Dental Association (ADA) suggests taking at least one full set every three to five years for a complete diagnostic examination, unless there is a concern that needs to be addressed. This concern may be regarding a patient describing pain or related to trauma. Then an individual x-ray will be taken called a periapical.

Dental radiographs have been a major component in the diagnosis of the oral cavity since their discovery. The technique has gone through many changes in the last century and radiation exposure has been minimalized to ensure patient safety as well as the dental assistant. Exposure to dental radiation hasn’t been an issue for quite some time, however, it is still monitored carefully, training and continued upgrading is essential to everyone.

Dental Radiographs (X-Rays) for Children

In Children's Dentistry, there should be four x-rays, called bitewings, taken every year unless there is a concern for recurrent decay. Then, X-rays should be taken every six months. This type of children x-rays shows in between the teeth. They will show if there is decay that cannot be seen from the top of the tooth and how the teeth bite together or occlude. It is a very important tool for the dentist to make a complete diagnosis for the  patient. Oral exam and patient history are also important components in making a complete diagnosis.

It is especially important for the child patient to have a complete set of children x-rays taken. These can then be compared to future radiographs as the child ages. Certain radiographs are needed for different diagnoses. If a patient is new to the clinic then they will have the four bitewings (the x-rays that show the teeth biting together as well as in between the teeth) and a panoramic x-ray called a panorex. The panoramic view and the bitewings are considered a complete set of radiographs.

For children, they are needed to see the growing teeth under the baby teeth. This full set will include seeing the wisdom teeth in development as well. In today’s Ontario children's dentist offices we use state of the art digital radiography and current safety precautions. One question to ask when searching for a new best kids dentist is about their safety practices regarding children x-rays. If transferring to another dental office, you should ask for copies of the x-rays to limit exposure to radiation.

This is only if the x-rays are within the recommended time limits. If it’s passed the recommended time frame, then new x-rays will need to be taken. If the patient has had an emergency then a new x-ray called periapical will need to be taken. This type of x-ray focuses on an individual tooth and it’s surrounding areas.

Why Take X-rays On Children?

Taking x-rays is vital to your childrens oral health. Not just for decay removal and restorative procedures but also for growth patterns and oral diseases that may be present. Keeping an eye on your child’s growth pattern will help with diagnosing orthodontic concerns. Growth patterns of the teeth can show how the teeth will fit in the mouth and if there might be a need for braces. Early diagnosis can prevent severe crowding and or guide in the eruption of the permanent teeth. Thus, shortening the orthodontic experience.

The dentist can view all the tissues of the oral cavity and face with a panoramic x-ray. This is important for finding and detecting any lesions that might be evident on the x-ray. Early detection is extremely important to a cancer patient’s survival. The dentist will be able to refer the patient to an oncologist and work together for the child’s best oral health options. The patient will be able to start treatments and procedures early enough to hopefully stop the spread of cancer if it is present.

 

Conclusion

Dental radiographs are of utmost importance to making a complete diagnosis with regard to any dental patient or any dental health concern. Especially when it comes to children’s dental health. Baby teeth are important to a child’s speech, digestion, and guiding the permanent teeth into place. Viewing x-rays and an oral exam are the only ways to detect decay and other oral health issues as described above. Focusing on early detection and getting treatment plays a major role in the success of the patient. Good at-home oral hygiene habits can also be discussed and preventive measures such as fluoride treatments and sealants will continue to provide the patient with optimal oral health. For children, seeing a pain-free dentist every six months is recommended.


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Losing a Baby Tooth too Soon | Kid's Dentist Ontario

As parents, we naturally want the very best or our children. And healthy teeth, even if it is just their baby teeth, is no exception.

Generally speaking, children shouldn’t lose their milk teeth before age 4. In most cases, children will naturally lose these teeth between the ages of 6 and 12. In this blog post, we will detail what happens when a child loses their baby teeth early and how it can impact their oral health.

Which Baby Teeth Normally Fall Out First?

Before going over what causes baby teeth to fall out early, let’s get a better understanding of how they fall out under normal circumstances. Before getting their permanent teeth, children will start off with 20 baby teeth, which they will start to develop when they are between 6 and 12 months.

Once a child has reached the age of 5, the roots of their baby teeth will begin to shrink, causing them to naturally loosen and ultimately begin to fall out one by one. This shrinkage is a result of their permanent teeth starting to develop.

Typically, baby teeth will fall out in the same order in which they came in, meaning their lower center incisors will fall out first. From there, they will lose their upper center incisors. This process will continue until they have lost all of their baby teeth. The first permanent teeth that a child develops will be their molars.

What Happens When a Child Loses Their Baby Teeth Prematurely?

To better understand what happens when deciduous teeth fall out prematurely, it helps to know a little more about teeth in general first.

According to the American Dental Association, our first set of teeth are our deciduous teeth, which erupt from the gums at the age of 6 months, enabling us to consume solid foods. They also serve as place holders for our permanent teeth. In short, they are our “starter” teeth.

That said, most children will start to develop their permanent teeth around the age of 6, with their molars being the first to come in. By the time they reach the age of 13, all 28 of their permanent teeth should have emerged, and they should no longer have any baby teeth remaining.

Of course, this is a best-case scenario. As many parents can attest, things do not always go according to plan when it comes to the health and wellbeing of our children.

If a child loses a baby tooth too soon, it can significantly impact their oral health by causing the following problems:

  • Crowding
  • Poor jaw muscle development
  • Poor bone development
  • An incorrect bite
  • Alignment problems

In some cases, these problems may have to be corrected with braces and other orthodontic treatments.

What Can Cause a Child to Lose a Baby Tooth Early?

Much like adults, children can lose teeth due to trauma or severe decay. And also, like adults, children can also develop periodontal disease, which, coincidentally, is the leading cause of tooth loss in America, according to the National Institute of Health.

As far as dental trauma is concerned, it is not uncommon for children to lose their baby teeth while engaging in sports or playing with their friends. Cavities can also cause tooth loss if the tooth becomes severely decayed. For this reason, the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) advises parents to start scheduling regular dental exams for their children by the age of 1. These exams make it possible to detect cavities before they give way to decay.

What Treatments Are Available for a Baby Tooth That Falls Out Too Soon?

If you have noticed that your child has lost one or more of their baby teeth before the age of 4, you should schedule an appointment with a children's dentist sooner rather than later.

During your child's dental appointment, the dentist will likely take x-rays and examine their oral cavity for signs of periodontal disease and other factors that may have contributed to the tooth falling out prematurely. Provided that there are no signs of infection or other problems, the dentist will likely insert dental space maintainers in the space left behind by the missing tooth.

These devices are designed to ensure that their permanent teeth come in straight and adequately fill the space once occupied by their baby teeth. You should also take your child to a kid's dentist if they lost a baby tooth prematurely due to trauma as their injuries may also include damaged gum tissue or fractures to the jawbone. An x-ray will reveal the true extent of their injuries and will allow the dentist to recommend the best course of treatment.

Prevention

While it is not always possible to prevent baby teeth from falling out early, there are things that you, as a parent, can do to lower the chances of it happening to your child, some of which include

  • Making sure they wear mouthguards while engaging in sports
  • Making sure they practice good oral hygiene
  • Making sure they brush twice per day
  • Making sure they properly floss in-between teeth
  • Scheduling regular dental exams

Losing baby teeth is a rite of passage as children get older; however, they shouldn't fall out prematurely. The best way to go about preventing this from happening is by implementing some of the tips outlined in this blog and scheduling regular dental appointments for your little one.

While baby teeth will eventually fall out, they shouldn’t fall out prematurely. If this happens, it may be a good idea to schedule an appointment with a children's dentist.

 


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How to Choose the Best Toothpaste for Your Kid | Ontario Chidlren's Dentist

Children's dental care is important, and children's teeth require special attention. Establishing healthy dental habits is especially important as children grow. Purchasing the right toothpaste can substantially impact your child's overall oral health. With so many brands out on the market, finding the right one can be overwhelming!

So how do you choose? This guide identifies a few things to look out for when choosing toothpaste for your child. By following these steps, you will help prevent cavities and tooth decay, ensuring your child’s smile stays strong and bright.

The Gold Standard

The American Dental Association (ADA) utilizes strict testing methods to evaluate dental and oral care products. Buying a product with the ADA’s seal of approval ensures that you are receiving a product that works.

Full of Fluoride

Fluoride is critical for dental health. The ADA recommends using a toothpaste with fluoride to prevent cavities and tooth decay. However, it is important to monitor children using fluoride toothpaste. Consuming too much fluoride can cause a health condition called fluorosis.

Full of Flavor

Many children dislike mint flavors and find them to be too “spicy.” Buying a product in tasty flavors, such as bubblegum and strawberry, helps make brushing more enjoyable for children. The ultimate goal is to get children to brush their teeth twice a day. Tasty flavors entice children to brush their teeth more often and for more time.

Don't Be Abrasive

Abrasive brushing techniques are popular because they help whiten teeth.

Although abrasives eliminate stains and debris from the teeth, they also eliminate enamel. The primary function of enamel is to protect teeth from decay. It covers each tooth and shields the inner layers of teeth from extreme temperatures, plaque, and acids. However, once enamel is destroyed, it can’t be replaced.

Dentists recommend avoiding dental products that contain ingredients such as:

  • Silicates
  • Hydrated aluminum oxides
  • Calcium carbonate
  • Magnesium carbonate
  • Dehydrated silica gels

Don't Use Too Much Toothpaste

As adults, we tend to cover the entire toothbrush with paste. However, children don’t need a lot of paste because they have small teeth. Dentists state that a pea-sized amount is enough to properly clean your children’s teeth.

 

...And Use the Right Toothbrush

Toothbrushes for children should be small, with soft, round, nylon bristles. Medium and hard bristles are abrasive and can damage tooth enamel. Soft bristles provide a deep clean to the teeth and gums without damaging the gums or enamel. Additionally, avoid using too much pressure, as this may cause receding gumlines.

Use Proper Brushing Techniques

Brush your child's teeth in sections using a circular motion. The outside of the teeth, inside of the teeth, cheeks and gums should be cleaned. Pay particular attention to brushing the tongue. This removes bacteria and freshens your child’s breath. Don't forget to replace toothbrushes every 3 to 4 months!

You can start to floss once two teeth touch. This typically occurs between the ages of two and six. Flossing early helps children get into the habit of doing it daily. If bleeding occurs, don’t be alarmed! Bleeding is common when starting a flossing routine. This should decrease as the gums become healthier. However, if bleeding is persistent, you should consult a children's dentist.

Watch the Clock

To avoid tooth decay, children should brush their teeth twice per day for two minutes. Brushing less frequently increases the chance that your child will develop cavities or tooth decay. Tooth decay is one of the most common childhood diseases. Over 16 million children suffer from tooth decay every year.

Start Early

You do not have to wait for your child's teeth to come in to practice good dental habits. You can use a damp cloth to clean a toddler’s gums by gently wiping away residual food. This helps instill good dental habits early on in your children's lives.

You can start cleaning your child’s teeth as soon as they emerge. At 12 months, a soft children’s toothbrush and water can be used to clean the teeth. Dentists recommend introducing toothpaste at 18 months.

Oral hygiene is important for maintaining healthy gums and teeth throughout your kid’s life. Starting proper brushing techniques at a young age helps solidify the importance of dental care in children. Good dental habits are critical in preventing cavities and infant tooth decay. By following this guide, you will be ready to choose the best dental products for your kid.