Most of what you learn and teach your children about maintaining good oral health revolves around prevention. Your child’s smile is better off if they can successfully prevent things like cavities from developing, which takes successfully preventing the excessive buildup of oral bacteria on their teeth. This is what makes daily dental hygiene so important for your and your child’s smiles. It’s also what makes routine preventive care at the dentist’s office equally important. Today, we take a look at three preventive dental treatments designed specifically to help kids avoid cavities and other concerns that could have a growing impact on their long-term oral health.
Routine dental cleanings and checkups
Routine visits to the dentist’s office are important at every age, as checkup and cleanings are a vital part of keeping your smile consistently healthy. During your child’s dental visits, we carefully examine their teeth to determine how effective their hygiene routine is preventing excess plaque buildup. If necessary, we can offer tips on how to improve its effectiveness and lower their chances of developing cavities in the future. We’ll also thoroughly clean the surfaces of your child’s teeth of plaque and tartar (calcified plaque) buildup. This removes the harmful oral bacteria that can lead to cavity development if they remain on your child’s teeth too long.
Enamel remineralization with fluoride
The development of a cavity is progressive, and ideally, your child’s teeth are better off if they can prevent the process from ever starting. It begins when oral bacteria weaken your child’s tooth enamel, the protective layer of minerals that surrounds and protects their teeth. This occurs every time your child eats or drinks something and certain oral bacteria metabolize the nutrients (such as sugar) into harmful acids. To help prevent the enamel from becoming too weak and compromised, we may recommend applying a topical fluoride solution to the surfaces of your child’s teeth. Fluoride bonds to the weakened mineral strands that make up your child’s tooth enamel, making it much more resilient against attacks by harmful oral bacteria.
Additional protection with biocompatible sealants
Sometimes, your child’s tooth enamel may need a faster boost in strength and integrity due to severe erosion, before the enamel becomes compromised and unable to repair. While fluoride treatment can hasten the speed at which your child’s tooth enamel remineralizes itself, dental sealants can prevent oral bacteria from reaching your child’s tooth enamel at all for a period of time. Dental sealants are layers of clear, biocompatible, and BPA-free acrylic that are applied to the chewing surfaces of your child’s teeth, and dissolve on their own over time so they won’t have to be removed. Until they dissolve, the sealants provide a barrier that prevents oral bacteria or food particles from accumulating on or harming your child’s tooth enamel.
Learn more about helping kids prevent cavities
Teaching your kids how to practice good dental hygiene is a start, but successfully preventing cavities also requires professional preventive dental care. To learn more, or to schedule an appointment, call Lake Orion Family Dentistry in Lake Orion, MI, today at 248-693-6213.