What Causes Pediatric Tooth Decay?

Whether your child is a newborn or he’s in the phase of losing his baby teeth and getting his permanent teeth, you want to do all that you can to ensure your child’s mouth gets a clean bill of health. You want what is best for your child and that includes their oral health. After all, the health of your child’s teeth and gums are just as important as their overall health.

As a parent, you know that great pediatric dental care now will save your child from possible future dental health issues as an adult.

If you’re a new parent, you may not know where to start when it comes to ensuring great dental health care for your child. What major oral health care issue should you be on the lookout for?

It comes to the surprise of many parents that the number one childhood disease is pediatric tooth decay. While many parents are making sure their child is current on their vaccines and immunizations and in a panic rush their child to the hospital when the smallest health concern is suspected, the health of their child’s teeth and gums go neglected.

There are many ways parents unintentionally compromise their child’s oral health. Some of the common mistakes include:

Neglect to clean their child’s teeth and gums. Many parents don’t think to clean the inside of their child’s until after the first baby teeth erupt. Even as more and more baby teeth come in, some parents think that it isn’t important to clean them.

While parents may teach their children how to floss and brush their teeth when they are older, consistent oral care may take a backseat with the false mindset that baby teeth don’t matter as they will all fall out anyways and be replaced with permanent, adult teeth.

The care of the gums before the baby teeth come in should be cleaned regularly via a damp, moist washcloth. While primary teeth do fall out and get replaced, cavities in them can transfer into the upcoming permanent teeth.

Postpone in taking their child into the dentist. Similarly, parents don’t start thinking about taking their child into the dentist office until after their little one has a full set of primary teeth. When parents postpone their child’s first dental appointment, untreated dental issues can have progressed and be more complicated to treat and involve more intensive and prolonged treatment.

Don’t watch what their child eats. As a parent, you want your child to establish good eating habits. However, many children love the sweet and savory tastes of foods that aren’t good for their health. Even some food items that appear to be healthy like fruit snacks and fruit juice are full of cavity producing sugar. Fruit snacks also are sticky, leaving hard to dislodge sugar and bacteria between teeth.

Poor eating habits that contain sugar and starch-laden, nutrient poor foods and drinks are one of the biggest causes of pediatric tooth decay.

Fail to establish portion control or a regular snacking schedule. Limiting your child’s meal and snack portions as well as setting regular, consistent meal times is just as important as monitoring the foods your child eats. The shorter the time between meals, the more germs and bacteria that can accumulate inside your child’s mouth. With a child’s oral hygiene habit, the more food that gets accumulated in the mouth makes teeth cleaning and flossing harder. This increases the likelihood that those food particles can decay and lead to cavities.

5 Ways To Help Kids Successfully Overcome Their Fear Of Pediatric Dentists

Fear of dentists is a common problem that many adults face, and kids are not an exception. Some children will develop fear when they hear people discussing their challenging and painful experiences. Others may develop anxiety because the dentist is a stranger to them. Luckily, this is a problem that your child can overcome. The following are tips to enable your little one move past this hindrance in their next dental visit.

Start early

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that parents bring their children for their first dental visit when their first tooth erupts, or after their first birthday. With early dental visits, problems can be detected early, and treatment measures are taken to prevent further damage. Furthermore, children will experience less pain in future procedures, and this can help to curb anxiety.

Find the right pediatric dentist

Children will feel more comfortable when they are going to a dentist that they like. Parents should always take their children to pediatric dentists because they are specialists in treating children. These professionals will use smaller dental instruments and will have plenty of kids’ toys for them to play with. They are also prepared to work with anxious children and those with special needs to guarantee a better dental experience.

Keep It Simple

As you prepare for the dental visit, you should avoid including a lot of details. By doing so, you will raise more questions from the child, and this will necessitate you to add more information. Make sure that you maintain a positive attitude when talking about upcoming dental visits. However, you should also avoid giving the child false hope, especially if he/she needs more complex treatment. This is because he/she may end up losing trust in both you and the dentist.

Drop by before the actual appointment

You can stop by the clinic a few days before the dental appointment. This will give your child the opportunity to look around, and even meet the clinic staff. Children need to build a rapport with the dentist before they come in for a complicated procedure. When kids are comfortable with the dental staff they meet at the office, they will have a sense of familiarity that will make their official visit easier and more fun.

Avoid Bribery

Most dental professionals do not recommend bribing the child with special treats if he/she behaves well at the dental clinic. Children are intuitive beings, and any promises may increase their apprehension. Furthermore, promising a child sugary treats will also send a wrong message, especially after the dentist emphasizes on avoiding sweets to ensure healthy and clean teeth.

The Composition of a Tooth

How much do you know about your teeth?

Your teeth begin to grow while you’re still a baby inside your mother’s womb. While they aren’t visible until a few years after birth when they “erupt” or come up from within the gums, they are there. Baby teeth, or primary teeth grow in and fall out in the same order and are replaced with permanent, or adult teeth. Your permanent teeth will be the teeth you have for the rest of your life. If you lose an adult tooth, it may be able to be re-attached at the root if you see a dentist immediately. In many cases, a lost permanent tooth means a fake tooth, such as a dental implant will be needed to replace the lost, natural tooth.

Your teeth are able to withstand much wear and tear as well as grinding and pressure. What makes teeth so hard and long-lasting? It likely has something to do with their composition.

Each tooth is made up of enamel, dentin and cementum and each tooth has a dental pulp.

Tooth Enamel

The part of the teeth you’re most familiar with is the tooth enamel. This is the hard, translucent, outer covering of the tooth. It is this part of the tooth that cavities can destroy and leave the tooth vulnerable to further decay and disease. The enamel is said to be the hardest and most mineral-packed substance of the body. Tooth enamel is made up of mostly minerals, with some organic compounds and water. The enamel is the thickest (and strongest) at the cusp of the tooth and is weakest along the tooth edges.

As we age, the years of use, abuse and wear and tear, the enamel slowly wears off in what is called attrition.

What is enamel made of? Crystalline calcium phosphate called hydroxyapatite accounts for most of the minerals found in tooth enamel. These minerals give teeth their strength, as well as their brittleness. Enamel also doesn’t contain collagen like other parts of the tooth. Tuftelins, ameloblastsins, ameloblenins and enamelins are proteins that help develop enamel.

Dentin

Underneath the enamel is a porous, yellowish material called dentin. It is this material that gives teeth their classic yellow, or preferably white color. Dentin is made up of inorganic and organic materials as well as water. It is made of mineralized connective tissue and collagen proteins. Dentinogenesis, or the process of forming dentin involves the secretion by odontoblasts of the tooth pulp. Dentin contains a matrix of microscopic tubules that don’t criss-cross each other. The length of the tubules are determined by the radius of one’s tooth. Dentin is the substance between enamel or cementum and the pulp chamber.

While dentin isn’t as strong as enamel, it still gives your teeth extra strength, support and protection. Because it is softer than enamel, it decays more rapidly and is subject to severe cavities if not properly treated, but dentin still acts as a protective layer and supports the crown of the tooth.

Cementum

The innermost layer of the tooth is called the cementum. This part of the tooth resembles bone and it covers the tooth pulp. Like the tooth enamel and dentin, the cementum is made of inorganic (mostly hydroxyapatite), organic (mostly collagen) and water. Cementum is softer than the enamel and dentin and is secreted by cementoblasts that are in the root of the tooth. It too has a yellowish color and is the thickest around the apex of the tooth root. This part of the tooth has the purpose of being a medium through which the periodontal ligaments (the ligaments of the gums) attach to the tooth, giving the tooth stability.

Tooth Pulp

In the center of each tooth is the pulp. The pulp consists of connective tissue that contains nerves and blood vessels. The tooth pulp supplies the tooth with blood and nutrients as well as infection-fighting macrophages and T lymphocytes. It is in the pulp where the odontoblasts which make dentin are located as well as nerve endings, which give the tooth the ability to react to hot or cold food and drink.

Things to Consider Before Visiting a Dentist

You are only as healthy as your teeth. So, it’s important to take a good care of your teeth and gums to stay healthy. In fact, studies have already established a link between your teeth and body. Which means, any dental problem might eventually lead to some health issues if not treated in a timely. For that reason, regular dental visits become key to maintaining total health. You however should be careful while choosing a dentist for your next visit as all of them would be not as good as you expect them. Plus, it makes sense to visit a clinic that specializes in treating virtually every dental issue known.

First of all, you should check whether the dentist you plan to visit is experienced or has the expertise to provide right treatment to you. It’s also important to know whether the clinic uses world-class dental technology or state-of-the-art technology for treatment. Today, the use of computer in providing dental treatment has become a reality as this helps in pain-managed procedures. So, you should check with the clinic whether it is using sedation dentistry as well as this will help keep away the fear of dentist in you. It also makes sense to check whether the location of the office is convenient for you.

If you’re into job, it them becomes even more important to choose a dentist with convenient timing and location so that your schedules don’t get disturbed easily. And if the clinic has multiple branches throughout the city, it will be of great help as you can visit the one closest to either your home or office. It would be wrong to trust a clinic that does not take appointments in advance as it might put you with some inconvenience. You also need to check whether the clinic offer flexible payment terms so that the big oral healthcare costs could be managed easily.

A good dentist is one where you get a payment plan suitable to your budgets. There, you can expect all your dental insurance to get coverage as well so that financial burden could be lessened to a great extent. More importantly, a top clinic is often the one where multi-specialty treatment is available. Exceptional care at affordable price should be a norm and every patient, irrespective of age and sex, should get the same treatment. The dentist should be ready to clear all your doubts as it gives a satisfaction every patients looks forward to.

Further, it’s a wrong strategy to rely on the dentist next door hoping to save some money yet this may prove costly in the long run. Unless you are sure about the expertise of the dentist, you should never visit there as your dental health might be risk. You can rely on recommendations from friends or colleagues or search online for the best dentist. With a little check on the credentials, it’s possible to find a good dentist which can help you stay on top of your dental health easily.

How Dental Implants Help Restore Quality of Life

Only healthy people can live a quality life. If your health is not up to the work, it can disturb your quality of life drastically. The same happens when you have lost a natural tooth and your oral health is affected. This cerates problem in everyday activity like eating, speaking and smiling. Your facial charms go away, and your smile loses it luster when you have lost or missed one or more of your teeth. This is when you turn to the dentist in the hope of restoring everything gone in the wake of the missing teeth, and you get the desired result.

Further, you understand the limitations with conventional tooth replacement options such as dentures, bridges and crowns. You know they are good but certainly not the best, and also not capable of delivering the kind of replacement you crave for. At the same time, you also value dental implants for being a new-age option to replace your missing tooth and let you live without facing any issue with life. In implant, you have a fixture that is embedded or inserted within the jawbone to work as the root and support the prosthesis. This is how the tooth is replaced.

Similarly, dental implants are for people who want a tooth replacement option that is closes to being natural. This option is also perfect for people tired of the inconvenience and discomfort caused by dentures. After all, the placement of dental implants ensures bone formation resulting in stability of the artificial tooth. Thus, there will never an issue with your teeth slipping off or falling out, as it happens with dentures. More importantly, dental implants are fit for anyone looking for a long-term and durable replacement for their missing teeth. After all, it can last forever if you follow the dentist’s instructions and care it properly.

In fact, implants are a major component of cosmetic dentistry for ensuring a beautiful smile to those who have lost or missed their natural teeth. You should also know that implants require minimum preparation or reduction of the teeth which ensures zero harm to the natural tooth structure. Unlike dentures, you are free to eat anything you like, sticky or hard foods no bar, and this makes implants a great tooth replacement option in true sense. No matter what you eat, you will free from the worry of anything being broken, chipped, fractured or dislodged ever.

In addition, dental implants are considered the next option to natural tooth which shows how much people trust this amazing method of tooth replacement. With them, you won’t face any issue with brushing or flossing ever and needless to say, you will end up with improved oral hygiene. You will also face the kind of comfort and convenience that your original teeth would deliver, and this has to be one of the biggest advantages of tooth implants. So, you should always go with implants in case of a missing tooth to restore the quality of life you deserve to lead always.

How Your Smile Can Give You A Happy Life

When you think of having the perfect life, it likely will consists of a rewarding job, lots of money, a nice home, flexibility, plenty of friends and maybe a loving family. While possessions, ambitions and positive relationships are all great and can help give you that fulfilling, satisfying life you’ve always wanted, there is something more simple you can do to help you achieve your dream life. This secret is also something you already have and don’t have to wait for. It’s your smile.

Your smile is unique, meaning it is distinctly yours. Your smile has many obvious and not-so obvious benefits that can help forge you a happier life:

A Positive Attitude. The phrase “attitude changes everything” may seem like a short, motivating pep talk, but it has great nuggets of truth in it. If you have a great-looking smile that you’re proud to show-off, you can’t help but feel happy and have a more positive attitude. Studies have showed the psychology of smiling and that those who smile more often and on a regular basis are generally happier and have a more positive view of life, themselves, others and their circumstances.

More Job Prospects. As mentioned early, your smile is uniquely yours. It is something extra in addition to your resume that can set you apart from other job candidates. While it doesn’t directly speak to your qualifications, it gives off a perception of confidence and positive self-esteem. People who smile appear more charismatic, trusting and confident. Many business leaders and leaders in general have perfected smiling. Your smile can very well indicate leadership ability.

If you have a job, your smile can more likely open up opportunities to advance your career, including promotions.

More Friends. If you’re feeling lonely, simply smile and show off your pearly whites. People are drawn to people who continually smile. A smiling person appears friendly and trustworthy. People who smile will also laugh more indicating that they are also fun and exciting. In addition, both men and women are more attracted to those who smile, so smiling might improve your chances of a date.

Better Health. There are more and more studies indicating the interconnectedness of one’s oral health and one’s overall health. With that aside, the simple act of smiling can improve your health, and in fact, help you live longer. Your smile helps relieve stress by activating certain hormones in your brain that lower blood pressure, which in turn, can help keep your heart healthy and strong.

Your smile does more than add beauty to your face, it can help give you a happier life.

Is your smile one that you readily show off or is it one you’re embarrassed of?

Good oral hygiene is required for a healthy and beautiful mouth. Regular visits to your dentist play a big role in healthy teeth and gums. While going to the dentist may not be first on your list as your favorite place to visit, the twice-yearly check-ups are essential in maintaining a good-looking smile that you can’t help but show off and which can also help you attain a happier life. Not only will you have a great-looking mouth, but healthy teeth and gums can also help lower your future dental costs by catching possible oral health issues early.

Types of Dental Crowns

The dentists play a major role in maintaining good oral health for their patients. Apart from regular teeth cleaning, bonding and cavity filling procedures, they offer other complex procedures. That includes the root canal, wisdom tooth extractions, and dental crowns. The dental crowns are made in many forms. They offer a good alternative for people with missing or weak teeth. The following are the functions the crowns serve.

Dental Crowns

The dental crowns are also known as the cap. A crown is a prosthetic object. The dentists cement it on the tooth. After being placed on the teeth, it can only be removed by the dentist. The cap is used by the dentists to cover a damaged tooth. The covering improves the appearance of the tooth and strengthens it. Hence, it aligns with the damaged tooth on the jawbone.

Crowns are made on demand. The dentist must ensure that its color resembles the natural teeth of the patient. That is very important since it prevents people from detecting if the patient has crowns. The size of the damaged tooth is reduced to enable the crown to fit on it properly. After that, an impression of that tooth is taken to create a crown. The dentists can place a temporary crown while making a permanent one.

Types of dental crowns

There are four types of dental crowns. They include:

Ceramic crown -The ceramics are perfect for restoring missing or damaged front teeth. They are a perfect choice since they can easily blend with the natural tooth color. The particular crown is made from porcelain.

Porcelain fused to the metal crown-This crown has a stronger bond than the regular porcelain. That is because it has been connected to a metal structure. The metal makes this crown more durable.

Gold alloys-This crown is a mixture of copper, gold, and other metals. The crown offers a very strong bond to the tooth. It does not fracture or wear the tooth. That is why it is very durable. The golden color makes it stylish too.

Base metal alloys-It consists of metals that make up a very strong crown. These metals are highly resistant to corrosion. Before fitting the crown, the least healthy tooth ought to be removed.

Differences between the crown types

  • The filling materials and strength of the tooth affect the sealing capability of the porcelain crowns. The other three crown types provide a better seal against damages.
  • The gold and metal alloys crowns are highly durable compared to porcelain crowns that are less strong. They might damage the tooth when grinding the teeth. However, the porcelain that is fixed with metal is more durable.

The crowns might get loose and fall out sometimes. However, if they are properly maintained, they can last for a very long time. Practicing good oral hygiene enhances their durability.