Cavities impact kids of all ages, and could lead to discomfort and even the risk of premature tooth loss, which in turn leads to a heightened risk of dental misalignment. But to help lower the risk of cavities and safeguard the smile, our team can offer preventive children’s dentistry. In today’s blog, your Lake Orion, MI, dentist talks about fluoride and dental sealants.
How Tooth Decay Forms
Tooth decay occurs when the outer enamel is compromised, either through damage or poor oral hygiene. Often, poor oral hygiene is the culprit. Lack of proper brushing and flossing, infrequent dental cleaning visits, and a diet high in sugar and starch can all promote plaque buildup, which weakens and erodes the outer enamel. Harmful oral bacteria then reach the inner dentin to cause a cavity to form. The decay will grow in severity with time, which is why treatment is crucial. Otherwise, the decay could lead to an infection that actually threatens the stability of the tooth! Fortunately, we have preventive treatments to help protect kids from cavities.
Fluoride is a mineral that binds to the weakened portions of your tooth enamel. This prevents it from eroding further and lowers the risk of cavities significantly. We can apply this in a topical gel form directly to the teeth during your child’s checkup and cleaning visit. The application takes minutes, and they first need to avoid food and drink for about 30 minutes. You can also help them by ensuring they brush and a fluoride toothpaste, as this also helps strengthen outer enamel. Kids three and younger should use a rice sized blot, while kids over the age of three need a pea sized one.
Placing Dental Sealants
Our team can also protect the rear teeth. These molars are often difficult for kids to reach when they brush and floss, which means food and drink particles can remain lodged there, feeding oral bacteria and allowing cavities to form. But with dental sealants, we apply a special acrylic coating to these teeth. The layers help prevent food and drink particles from being trapped between the teeth, and they can stay in place for up to ten years. Even as they wear away, they cling the longest to the more vulnerable portions of tooth structure.
If you have any questions about our approach to children’s dentistry, then contact our team today to learn more. We want to help your kids enjoy optimal oral health for years to come!
Is Your Little One Ready for Children’s Dentistry?
Contact Lake Orion Family Dentistry in Lake Orion, MI by calling 248-693-6213 to schedule your next appointment with our team and learn more about how we protect children from common issues like tooth decay.