Early dental treatment prevents problems that may affect your child’s oral health, self-image, and emotional well-being. At Red Barn Dental, we incorporate fun and playful techniques to get children interested in oral health care. For us, children and families are a big part of our practice. That’s why we make sure that your child’s dental routine is always maintained by educating them on good oral hygiene practices and their benefits for a healthy smile.
Be sure to get an early start on regular dental care at home, and to build habits that will protect your child’s teeth and lay the foundation for future health. Parents are responsible for ensuring that their children practise good dental hygiene, by making brushing and flossing a regular part of their daily routine.
Thoroughly clean your infant’s gums after each feeding with a water-soaked infant cloth. This stimulates the gum tissue and removes food.
If your baby sleeps with a bottle or sippy cup at naptime or bedtime, fill it with water only.
Lift your baby's lip and watch for changes in colour, lines or spots on your child's teeth as these may be signs of potential problems.
Oral Hygiene Tips for Children
Brushing: When your child reaches the age of 3, teach them proper brushing techniques with a small, soft-bristled toothbrush and a small amount of fluoridated toothpaste. Children don’t have the dexterity to brush properly until age 7 or 8, but it’s important that they love brushing and caring for their teeth. So before then, it is entirely the parents’ responsibility to ensure the teeth are cleaned properly.
Flossing: As soon as baby molars finish erupting (by age 2), you should start flossing them with a floss pick (a small handle with a small piece of floss attached). Brush twice a day, floss once a day.
Visit the dentist every 6 months to check for cavities in the primary teeth and for possible developmental problems.
Almost all communities in BC do not have fluoride in water, including Richmond. If you are not using fluoridated toothpaste for your child, discuss the need for supplement options with your dentist. It should be noted that not all children are candidates for fluoride supplements, and with a well-balanced diet and low sugar intake, most children do well without fluoride supplements.
Thumb sucking and pencil biting habits could potentially lead to occlusion problems. Be sure to notify your dentist of such behaviour.
Ask your dentist about sealant applications to protect the chewing surfaces of tooth surfaces.
Avoid carbonated and sweetened drinks as they will cause a significant breakdown of the tooth structure.
We recommend that a child receive their first orthodontic screening by the age of 8. By examining a child early, we are able to recognize potential problems early and correct them before they become more serious. This is particularly important if your child exhibits any habits such as thumb sucking or tongue thrusting upon swallowing. This is the stage of orthodontics known as the Interception phase. We correct the issue of space and habits, so adult teeth have room to come in.
In certain types of bite problems, early interceptive orthodontic treatment has proven to be beneficial for the overall desired result. Because a young child’s permanent teeth have not finished erupting (growing in), we are able to thoroughly evaluate the front-to-back and side-to-side tooth relationships and address any impending problems at the earliest stage.
During your child’s initial evaluation, we will first determine if any problems need to be addressed. The most common are crowding, crossbites or overbites. It is probable that early treatment is not necessary at the time. However, if early treatment is indicated, we will create a personalized treatment plan for your child that will prove to be the most beneficial for their specific case.
Early orthodontic treatment varies between patients but may include removable or fixed appliances that can provide more room for crowded, erupting teeth; preserve space for unerupted teeth; create facial symmetry through manipulating jaw growth; reduce the possibility of tooth extraction, and reduce overall treatment time and cost in braces or Invisalign®.
What Happens When My Child Visits the Dentist for the First Time?
Depending on your child’s age, our team’s approach is catered to each child’s personality and stage of development. For example, we may examine a child sitting on his/her parent’s lap; while those able to sit on their own can even get their teeth counted and “brushed”. Our team will go over oral hygiene, diet and habits with parents. Remember, prevention is key, even to our younger patients.
My Child Is Getting a Filling. Should I Tell Him or Her What to Expect or Leave That to the Dental Staff?
If I Am Pregnant, Do I Need to See the Dentist?
Pregnancy can predispose women to gum disease. It is very important to keep up with your flossing and brushing, and also to still visit your dentist while expecting. Red Barn Dental sees many young and growing families. We know your needs and will make your visit as convenient and pleasant as possible.
Is It True That I Will Lose a Tooth for Every Child I Will Have?