While dentists may limit certain cosmetic procedures to older adolescents and adults, there are some procedures a pediatric dentist may recommend for children, such as dental bonding. Bonding uses a composite resin to help repair the appearance of teeth. Unlike more invasive procedures, a dentist can perform a bonding procedure in one visit with limited…
What Happens During an Appointment at Dentistry for Children?
Dentistry for children is critical for your son or daughter. From the time your child first starts getting teeth, you should make appointments. The dentist will help your child maintain healthy, strong teeth. This is also the right place to turn to address tooth pain and cosmetic issues.
Frequency of visits to dentistry for children
For most children, the first teeth emerge around six months after birth. About six months later, parents should schedule the first visit to the pediatric dentist. From this point, it is important to go to the dentist every six months. Patients with gum disease or a history of having multiple cavities may need to come more often. If the child has tooth pain or damaged teeth, parents should not wait until the next scheduled visit to come to the office.
X-rays and cleaning
Most visits to dentistry for children begin with X-rays. The hygienist will take these so that the dentist can have a detailed look at the patient’s mouth. These pictures can reveal smaller, developing cavities that the dentist will not be able to spot during a hands-on examination. Next, the hygienist will use an ultrasonic tool to clean every side of each tooth. The assistant will also scrape off any plaque or other buildup.
The hygienist next polishes all of the patient’s teeth using a dental tool. Wear and tear on the teeth can take a toll. Eating certain foods and drinking certain beverages can discolor and stain teeth. The polishing helps restore the teeth’s white color. After polishing the teeth, some dentistry for children offices will give the child a fluoride treatment. Rinsing and fluoride trays are different options.
At this point, the dentist comes into the exam room and looks at the child’s teeth. The dentist will check the child’s teeth for cavities, plaque and tartar. There will also be an examination of the child’s gums and jaw. The dentist may even check the child’s neck for any abnormalities or dysfunctions.
The dentist also looks at the X-rays to identify cavities between the teeth or other emerging problems such as infections. This portion of the examination at the dentistry for children office also includes education. The dentist may give suggestions on how the child can brush and floss more effectively. If the child has cavities or damaged teeth, parents should make a follow-up appointment for the treatment. These visits should occur in the next week or two. Parents should not put off restorative care.
Good to know
As a parent, if you have not taken your child to a dentistry for children office, it is helpful to know what will happen. If you have older children, you should share this information with the child. This can help your son or daughter feel more comfortable and at ease with the visit. Even routine checkups can make children nervous. The more you know about the dentist’s processes, the more positive the experience can be for both you and your child.
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