About your kids dental care information
“Research has shown that when mothers feel stressed about their child’s visit to the dentist, they transmit the same mood to their child who then fails to cooperate with the dentist”
After the first visit, and bearing in mind the age and the ability of your child to cooperate with us, we will discuss with you whether a parent should be present in the dental treatment room during dental procedures.
Please bear in mind that mutual trust is established between us and your child when the presence of parents, either in the dental room or in the waiting room, is very discreet. This mutual trust ensures good communication and improves your child’s cooperation with us when providing dental care.
For that reason, please do not express any dental fears that you may have to your child. Try to feel relaxed and have a positive attitude towards the dental reservation. Do not discuss any negative dental experiences that either parent may have had in front of your child.
We appreciate your referral of family and friends. New patients are always welcome and a referral is not needed.
Many fearful children visit our office, that is why it is important to get all the kids dental care information possible from us, because some of them have been to other dentists before without success. These children are even more fearful and difficult to manage because they already have had an unpleasant or painful experience.
The best thing that you can do as a parent before your child’s first visit is to be calm and happy. Prepare your child that the purpose of the first visit to our office will be only to count their teeth, maybe take pictures, and definitely to pick out a prize from our treasure tower.
Don’t try to explain further details to your child, as you may give hints to your child creating false ideas of what will happen. We know the methods and have the techniques to manage your child’s behaviour and fear.
Some of the techniques are:
- Tell – Show – Do
- Modelling (using mom or dad as a model)
- Positive reinforcement
- Limits – control of behavior
- Use of mild sedation
In our profession, we are trained to recognize the reasons behind your child’s dental fear and anxiety, and to manage your child’s behaviour. But please always expect age appropriate behavior to occur. We strongly recommend to contact our office to know more about kids dental care information
Most children can be managed by using some simple behaviour management techniques. Others need more time and effort and a more complicated approach. The majority of children can cooperate well in the dental office for treatment if a correct and careful approach is applied. However, some children may need alternative options for their dental treatment, such as sedation or general anaesthesia.
Begin brushing your child’s teeth at the age of one. It has been proven that if tooth brushing begins at this age the child will suffer less from dental decay.
This happens because this early tooth brushing habit can diminish the number of bacteria from the very first stages of development, and maintain a low concentration throughout life.
Age 1-3: use a minimal amount of fluoridated toothpaste (Grain of rice-sized) on a children’s toothbrush once a day, during the bedtime brushing session.
It doesn’t matter if your child swallows this bit of toothpaste if you live in York Region where there is no fluoride in the water.
During the daytime brushing sessions, use non-fluoridated tooth and gum cleanser until your child learns to spit out the toothpaste.
Do not use fluoridated tooth paste at this age if you live in a fluoridated area.
Age 3-6: when your child becomes 3 years old, use a (pea-sized) amount of toothpaste.
For more effective brushing have your child spit out the toothpaste, but do not make your child rinse his mouth, after brushing.
Age 6 and above: a normal amount of toothpaste should be used provided that he can spit it out at ease.
The use of toothpaste is necessary due to the beneficial effect of the fluoride on the enamel of the teeth.
Before the age of six encourage your child to avoid rinsing out the remaining toothpaste since the beneficial effect of the toothpaste is increased if the child doesn’t rinse with water after brushing.
Please remember the following from our dental care information:
Bacteria must be removed twice a day (morning and night) as they begin to develop 12 hours after their removal.
Parents must brush their children’s teeth until the recommended age of 8 – 10 as children may not have the manual dexterity or co-ordination to do so correctly on their own.
Toothpaste must contain an adequate amount of fluoride according to the child’s age. We’ll advise you on this issue during your child’s first visit.
Too much toothpaste on the brush during the years 1-6 can cause damage to the permanent teeth due to increased swallowing of the fluoride that it is in the toothpaste .If this happens then fluorosis can occur. Fluorosis is a disease of the enamel which occurs during the development of the permanent teeth and presents with white – brown spots on the enamel of the permanent teeth.
Electric tooth brushing:
Is as good as a manual toothbrush when used properly.
A nylon bristle toothbrush with a small head and bend handle is very good for your child.
You need to change your brush frequently usually every 3-4 months due to accumulation of bacteria and damage to the bristles.
Do not keep using toothbrushes like the one in the picture since they do more harm than good (abrasions of the gums, attrition of the teeth, compromised cleaning).
Brushing alone is not enough to remove bacteria as brushing cleans only 3 of the 5 surfaces of the tooth.
Use dental floss every night before brushing. It may prevent dental decay between the teeth at the proximal surfaces (picture below).
Also, flossing significantly decreases bad breath due to the reduction of bacteria that are trapped between the teeth or the fillings.
Waxed dental floss is softer and usually more acceptable to children.
Frequency of fluoride treatment
The frequency of fluoride treatment is usually twice a year, but patients in higher risk categories may need fluoride treatments more frequently (up to 4 times a year).
Also, orthodontic patients usually need more frequent cleanings and fluoride treatments due to the increased risk for decay or gingivitis during orthodontic treatment.
Kids dental care information to develop good oral hygiene habits:
- Developing oral hygiene habits starts before your baby has teeth. Wiping your baby’s gums after feeding with a clean damp cloth will help your baby get used to having their mouth cleaned after eating.
- If you feel that your baby needs to sleep with a bottle or sippy cup, fill it with water only. Other liquids like juice or milk encourage the growth of bacteria which cause tooth decay.
- After feeding and mouth cleaning, lift your baby’s lip to look for changes in the colour of your baby’s front teeth.
White lines or spots, brown lines or spots or chips in the teeth may be signs of potential problems, which, if caught early, are easier to repair.
- As soon your baby’s first tooth appears begin brushing with an infant or baby tooth brush. Brush in the morning and especially before bedtime.
Lie your child down with their head well supported by a pillow, a couch, a bed or your lap. This improves your visibility and you will have TWO hands free with which to brush.
- Use a fluoride toothpaste. Use only a very small smear of toothpaste with each brushing. Fluoride in the toothpaste helps to harden the tooth mineral making it more resistant to acid.
Keep the toothpaste tube out of baby’s and children’s reach.
- Change your child’s toothbrush after each dental checkup (usually once every 6 months). If your child becomes ill, as most children do, either change the toothbrush after they recover to avoid reinfection.
- Make tooth brushing fun. Sing songs, play hide and seek looking for dinosaurs in each others mouth, read stories about healthy teeth and visiting the dentist.
But, most importantly, make sure YOU brush your child’s teeth once a day, preferable before they go to bed.
- Your child’s first dental check-up should occur by 12 months of age or within 6 months of the first tooth appearing.
This well-baby visit is a great time to ask the dental team questions about your child’s dental health.
- Healthy snacks are important for general health. Try to avoid acidic foods or foods containing sugar or starch between meals.
Sticky snacks containing sugar (such as dried fruit) or starch (crackers, cookies, granola bars) are especially harmful.
Some healthy snack choices include nuts and seeds, nut butters like peanut or almond, cheese, plain yogurt, popcorn, raw vegetables. See our snack sheet under “FORMS”.
- Sweets – we all know they can cause cavities. But moms and dads need to know that it’s not the amount of sweets our children eat but how often and when they eat them.