Posts for tag: sealants
How can you avoid cavities? Of course, a low-sugar diet reduces the presence of bacteria-filled plaque, which can destroy tooth enamel. Daily flossing and brushing are critical, too, as is attending six-month check-ups at Anderson Pediatric Dentistry's Anderson, SC, office. For children, Anderson Pediatric's Dr. Nietzer and Dr. Monn also recommend sealants—easily applied tooth-colored coatings which protect deeply fissured molars. Learn more about sealants and how they can keep your child cavity-free!
What are sealants?
Sealants are ultra-thin coatings "painted" on children's back teeth to protect from decay. The American Dental Association (ADA) touts sealants as a safe and effective barrier against the corrosive acids secreted by oral bacteria.
Why are sealants applied to the back teeth? Well, it's because molars are not smooth and flat as the front teeth, making them harder to clean. This difficulty stems from how the surfaces are grooved, with some of the enamel variations being so tiny, you cannot see them.
Due to this, molars are highly prone to decay and benefit from the extra barrier sealants provide. In fact, the ADA states that sealants decrease tooth decay in young molars by about 80 percent.
What treatment is like at Anderson Pediatric Dentistry
First, a hygienist will clean your child's teeth. Next, the selected teeth are dried and prepped with a mild etching solution. Then, the sealant is applied; this material is liquid, and the dentist ensures that it penetrates the fine fissures and pits completely. Finally, with a special blue light, the sealant is "cured," or hardened.
The results are totally unnoticeable to the eye, however, the sealants go on to protect young teeth for years. Even adults with healthy molars may benefit from sealant applications!
Sealants are nothing new
They've been around for decades, but unfortunately, many families skip this important preventive dental service. This is a shame, for sealants, along with fluoride treatments, provide children with inexpensive and easy insurance against more expensive and complicated procedures such as fillings, or worse yet, extractions.
Find out more
At your child's next exam and cleaning appointment, ask Dr. Nietzer or Dr. Monn about sealants. We'll be happy to explain the process and its advantages. If it's time for a routine visit to Anderson Pediatric Dentistry, call us today for an appointment: (864) 760-1440.
Did you know that one in 12 Americans suffers from asthma? That number seems alarming and a little difficult to believe, but the prevalence of asthma is increasing every year. Ironically, asthma and childhood caries (cavities) are the two most prevalent childhood diseases.
Most people diagnosed with asthma will begin using an inhaler, either as a rescue option or preventative treatment, or both. If you or your child uses an inhaler, you may have heard suggestions that inhalers cause cavities or that children with asthma have more dental problems.
The truth is that asthma and inhalers will not cause cavities. However, the two are often linked because, they may make your child’s mouth more susceptible to conditions that allow cavity-causing bacteria to thrive. The good news is that these concerns can be easily managed and your child will not have to choose between a beautiful smile or breathing freely.
1) Dry Mouth
Typically, those suffering from respiratory problems, such as asthma and allergies, suffer from restricted air flow, causing them to breathe through their mouth, rather than their nose. Mouth breathing has been linked with dry mouth and less saliva.
Saliva is key to washing away debris and fighting bacteria, so when your mouth is dry, it’s easier for plaque-causing bacteria to reproduce, increasing the chances of bad breath, tooth decay and gum disease. In addition, some medications in the inhalers can also have a drying effect on your mouth.
2) Mouth Sores
Regular use of the inhaler can sometimes lead to sores or ulcers on the back roof of the child’s mouth if the medications irritate the skin.
What You Can Do:
A little vigilance will go a long way. Follow these easy steps below to ensure that your child’s treatments aren’t damaging their teeth.
1) Rinse and Brush.
After using the inhaler, be sure that your child rinses his or her mouth with water. Brushing is even better.
2) Water, water, water.
Keep your child hydrated with water throughout the day to counteract the effects of a dry mouth.
3) Talk to your dentist.
Make sure to tell your child’s dentist about his or her asthma, medications and concerns. Your pediatric dentist can recommend strategies for maintain your child’s oral health.
4) Treat allergies.
Asthma and allergies often come together. Constantly having a stuffy nose will cause a child to breathe through their mouth, too, causing dry mouth. Proper treatment of allergies can alleviate the need to breathe through their mouth as often, enabling the child’s saliva to help fight off plaque-causing bacteria.
Remember, asthma isn’t a prescription, or excuse, for cavities. With a few simple preventative measures, your child can maintain his or her oral health and ensure a beautiful smile for life. If you have questions or concerns about your child’s teeth, or you are looking for a dental home for your child, Anderson Pediatric Dentistry would love to give you Something to Smile About! Call our office today at 864-760-1440.
What is pediatric dentistry and how is it different from general dentistry?
The short answer is that pediatric dentistry is a specialized practice of dentistry that is focused on meeting the needs of children, while also providing an educational resource for parents and caregivers. Often, pediatric dentists will also see patients with special needs. Pediatric dentists graduate from dental school and then go on to complete a 2-3 year residency program, where they learn advanced techniques for treating issues related to the dental development and oral health of children. During their residency, pediatric dentists receive additional training in behavior management, child development and child psychology, anesthesia, common oral trauma in children, sedation, orthodontics, oral medicine and infant oral health.
While all dentists are educated in oral health, pediatric dentists focus on ways to better serve children and their parents, as this is their specialty. At Anderson Pediatric Dentistry, our scheduling system allows for more time to console a nervous child and more time to explain procedures and educate parents and caregivers. Our kid-friendly dentists and staff are focused on children, trained and prepared for all types of behavior. In addition, our dental office caters to children and their comfort. By providing a bright and cheerful office and waiting room with kid-friendly activities, a pleasant environment and lots of compassion and smiles, our goal is more than great dentistry- it’s about providing a great experience and positive feelings about dental visits.
Pediatric dentistry aims to provide excellent dental care, both preventative and restorative, to children. The goal should always be to instill lifelong healthy dental habits that will carry our patients into adulthood and provide a beautiful, healthy smile for life.
We invite you to make Anderson Pediatric Dentistry your child’s dental home and look forward to giving both you and your child, Something to Smile About!
Dental sealants are plastic coatings that are usually placed on the surface of the tooth to help prevent them from decay. We take a plastic-like liquid and drip it onto the biting surface to coat the pits and fissures that trap food and bacteria. UV light is then applied to harden the liquid and coat the areas that are difficult to reach when brushing. These sealants can significantly help fight tooth decay.
Sealants are typically applied to the permanent back teeth- the molars and premolars. At Anderson Pediatric Dentistry, we recommend applying the sealants between the ages of 5 and 7, as soon as the teeth erupt. By applying the sealant as soon as the teeth arrive, we can significantly reduce the likelihood of those teeth developing dental caries.
Do sealants really work? Research says yes! In fact, research published in the Journal of the American Dental Association revealed that youth treated with dental sealants have about a 70 to 80 percent reduction in the occurrence of cavities, compared with those who do not receive sealants. Furthermore, sealants can often last for several years before they need reapplied and can be used over areas of early decay to stop the cavity from getting worse. Reading stats like that makes recommending sealants an obvious choice for us.
Applying dental sealants on your children’s teeth can have positive effects on your child’s long-term dental health, too. By reducing the chance of cavities on your child’s teeth when they are young and still learning proper dental care, you can help them avoid getting cavities on hard to reach areas that young children don’t always brush adequately. The sealants can act as a safety net to help protect teeth while our young patients are still perfecting their brushing techniques.
(photo provided by CDC webpage on oral health and dental sealants)
For more information about dental sealants, contact Anderson Pediatric Dentistry today. We can answer all your questions and discuss the benefits of dental sealants for your child.
If you would like to read more about the advantages of dental sealants and the current research and recommendations, visit these sites: