Posts for tag: infant
As a parent, you have the power to give your child a beautiful smile! Toddlers and young children are not physically able to brush their teeth correctly. It’s important for parents to always help brush small children’s teeth, and to continue supervising and assisting with brushing until the age of seven to eight years old. Even once the child becomes older, it’s a good idea to check in on their brushing and flossing habits regularly!
Taking great care of your young child’s teeth is simple if you follow a few guidelines:
Consistency is Key. Brush your child’s teeth twice a day, every single day. As soon as the teeth begin to touch, start flossing several times a week.
Use a child’s size toothbrush. A smaller toothbrush size ensures a better fit and more comfortable experience.
Use the right toothpaste. Toddlers and young children should use a pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste and be able to spit the toothpaste out, not swallow it. Infants should use a fluoride-free toothpaste until they are two years-old, or capable of spitting the toothpaste out.
Brush effectively. Use small, circular brushes to sweep the food and bacteria off the teeth. When brushing the gumline, angle your brush at 45 degrees to get alone the gumline.
Brush your entire mouth. Brush each and every tooth, your gums, tongue and roof of mouth.
Aim for two-minutes, twice a day. It may seem like a long time, but it takes at least this long to brush every surface of every tooth.
Make it fun. Youtube is full of fun brushing songs, you can find brushing apps on your phone, or make up you own silly songs to keep it fun.
Model good oral hygiene! If your child sees that you value your smile and take great care of your teeth, he or she will learn to do the same.
Other ways to keep your child’s smile shining for life:
Limit juice, soda, sports drinks and other sugary liquids that cause sugar to sit on the teeth.
Eat a healthy diet full of fruits, vegetables and calcium-rich foods.
Avoid sticky, gummy and acidic candies and treats. Opt for chocolates that melt away quicker and don’t stick as long.
Floss regularly, at least several times a week. Daily is best!
Make your child wear a mouthguard when engaging in contact sports or any activity where a mouth injury could occur.
As always, Anderson Pediatric Dentistry strives to be a go-to resource for your pediatric dental questions. If you are in Anderson county or surrounding areas and need a dental home for your child, give our office a call at 864-760-1440 and let us give you
There’s nothing sweeter than a sleeping child. The peaceful look of contentment, the gentle breathing, a small smile as they enjoy a happy dream – it all seems perfect. Until you hear it. A loud grinding and gnashing noise that comes from their small mouth? What is that? And is it as bad as it sounds?
Bruxism- What Is It?
Bruxism is the medical term from grinding, gnashing or clenching your teeth. For children, it’s more common for these behaviors to be displayed during sleep, rather than while they are awake. Sleep Bruxism is actually considered a sleep-related movement disorder. The disorder is also called nocturnal bruxism, nocturnal tooth-grinding and nocturnal tooth-clenching.
While bruxism in children is fairly common, the exact cause of sleep bruxism is unknown. It has been linked to improperly aligned teeth or irregular contact between upper and lower teeth, stress, anxiety, a response to pain, such as an earache or teething and other medical conditions.
Because most children display these behaviors only when sleeping, it’s nearly impossible for them to know that they do it. You will need to observe your child while he or she sleeps. Symptoms that your child is suffering from sleep bruxism include:
- Abnormal wear of the teeth
- Sounds associated with bruxism (Think loud chomping and grinding noises in their mouth!)
- Jaw muscle discomfort
- Complaining of headaches
- Tooth sensitivity
Impact of Bruxism on Child’s Health:
Most children will outgrow bruxism, and sometimes, it may go totally undetected. However, even if they don’t complain of jaw pain or other symptoms, bruxism can still have negative effects on your child’s teeth and general health. The grinding and gnashing can cause headaches and earaches. Over time, it can also wear down the tooth enamel, chip teeth and cause temperature sensitivity. Children that exhibit more severe bruxism may even have TMJ problems.
What Can You Do?
While there may not be a lot you can do to stop your child from clenching or grinding in their sleep, there are ways you can help lessen the frequency and intensity of incidences. If stress or anxiety is the cause of the bruxism, encourage your child to relax before bedtime with warm baths, soothing music, relaxing books and stories. Try to identify the areas causing stress and anxiety and help your child through it.
If you think your child is grinding his or her teeth, schedule a visit with your pediatric dentist, who will examine the teeth for chipped enamel and unusual wear and tear. They may spray air and water on the teeth to check for unusual sensitivity. In severe cases, your pediatric dentist may recommend a nighttime mouth guard for your child to wear while he or she sleeps. Since most children won’t be excited to keep this in their mouth, it’s not likely that your pediatric dentist would recommend this for very young children. For young children, relieving stress and anxiety, encouraging relaxation at bedtime and monitoring damage are the best options. Eliminating afternoon caffeine and turning electronics off two hours before bedtime may also help them sleep better.
If you are looking for a dental home for your child, Anderson Pediatric Dentistry would love to be your trusted partner in your child’s oral health. Call us today at 864-760-1440. Let us give you Something to Smile About!
Have you ever heard of a baby being born with tongue-tie? Maybe you have. Maybe not. The truth is, most people don’t hear about tongue-tie until their child is born with it. While it may not be talked about often, it can be a big deal.
Tongue-tie happens when the frenulum, the string of tissue under your baby's tongue, which attaches the tongue to the floor of the mouth, is too short or too tight. When the child’s tongue is tethered to the floor of his or her mouth by an unusually short or thick string of tissue, it can interfere with basic functions. Everyday activities, such as breastfeeding, eating, swallowing, speech and even just sticking out his or her tongue, can be made more difficult or even impossible.
Breastfeeding and Tongue-tie
Tongue-tie can make nursing a newborn very painful, and sometimes impossible. Babies who are tongue-tied may have problems latching correctly and/or maintaining the latch. This will cause problems as they over compensate by increasing suction, or chewing on the nipple, causing severe pain for the mother. An inability to latch correctly will affect the baby’s ability to drain the breast, possibly leading to supply issues. If the baby is not latching and nursing adequately, they may not be receiving adequate nutrition and may experience failure to thrive.
Tongue-tie can affect a baby’s oral development, as it affects their ability to eat, speak and swallow. Even everyday activities, such as licking an ice cream cone, kissing or playing certain instruments can be challenging.
In speech, the mobility of the tongue is necessary for certain sounds, such as “t”, “d”, “z”, “s”, “th”, “r”, and “I.”
Other challenges that may present when an infant, child or adult has a tongue-tie include poor oral hygiene because the tongue is not able to properly sweep food debris from the teeth, contributing to tooth decay and gingivitis. Extremely thick frenulum can also lead to the formation of a gap or space between the bottom teeth.
Aside from tongue-tie, infants may also be diagnosed with lip-tie, or a labial frenulum. This is when the thin membrane that attaches the top gumline to the upper lip, is tight or overly thick. Severe lip-tie can interfere with a baby’s ability to maintain a latch during breastfeeding. A thick labial frenulum can also affect the way the child’s top front teeth come in, often causing a gap between the two front teeth.
The Good News
There is hope. Tongue-tie and lip-tie do not have to be lifelong problems. In most cases, both tongue and lip-ties can be released with either a scalpel or scissors, or by laser. Lasers are a great choice as they do not normally require anesthesia. Laser treatment is also able to cauterize the area immediately, so there is minimal bleeding and minimizes any risk of infection. Anderson Pediatric Dentistry is proud to offer laser treatment for tongue-tie and/or lip-tie. If you are concerned that your child may have either of these issues, we encourage you give us a call. Your visit will consist of us evaluating your child and discussing any issues we see. We will also discuss possible treatment options and answer any questions you may have.
A Quick and easy solution to a frustrating problem - now, that’s Something to Smile About!