For children, avoiding cavities can be tough. Some have risk factors that make the chance of developing tooth decay particularly high, and for nearly all young children brushing and flossing is difficult due to limited dexterity. So, to help protect their smiles, your Shirley, NY, pediatric dentist and orthodontist will place a protective coating in the form of dental sealants.
Tooth Decay and Little Smiles
A powerful layer of tooth enamel coats your child’s teeth, but when this layer is weakened or eroded, this could cause cavities to form. Poor oral hygiene and a diet high in sugar and starch could allow plaque buildup to accumulate on the teeth, which erodes the enamel. An injury or chronic teeth grinding could also compromise the outer enamel. When cavities form, this could cause tooth sensitivity and toothaches, and eventually an infection. The infection then compromises the stability of the tooth, and premature loss could mean misalignment and other complications.
Dental Sealant Placement
For most kids, the rear teeth, which are harder for kids to reach and clean, is where tooth decay develops. To help lower the risk of tooth decay, our team could place dental sealants there. This is an acrylic material that coats the rear molars and prevents food from becoming trapped there or adhering to the surface. They can stay in place for between five and ten years on average, and even as they wear away, they remain in the portions of the tooth structure most vulnerable to decay the longest. This provides a great way to reduce cavity risk in kids, and we can also offer these for adults with limited dexterity and other issues that complicate daily brushing and flossing.
Other Preventive Actions
We could also apply a fluoride gel in each checkup visit, which coats the teeth and helps strengthen the outer enamel, so your child’s teeth are less susceptible to tooth decay. This is also why kids should use toothpaste with fluoride too! With a dental cleaning, we remove all plaque and tartar and then polish the teeth, this helps fight cavities and even issues like gingivitis. At home, you should assist your kids or monitor them to make sure they’re taking time to brush and floss daily the correct way.
If you have any questions about how we treat issues like cavities in childhood, or about our unique preventive treatment options, then contact our team today to learn more.
Visit Your Shirley, NY, Orthodontist and Pediatric Dentist
Our team wants to help kids stay free of tooth decay with our preventive dental sealants and fluoride treatments, as well as cleanings too. To learn more about our approach to preventive dentistry for kids, then contact Shirley Orthodontics and Pediatric Dentistry in Shirley, NY, by calling (631) 399-1600.