Now that kids in our community are seeing the school year come to an end, it’s a great time to schedule a checkup and cleaning. Your children can receive these essential preventive visits without missing school! In today’s blog, your Shirley, NY, pediatric dentist and orthodontist will talk about how checkups safeguard smiles of all ages, from babies to teens.
The First Visit
We recommend an initial visit at around age one, shortly after the first baby tooth arrives. This is also known as a happy visit, as there is little to no treatment. Instead, the dentist will conduct a knee-to-knee dental exam, so we can make sure baby teeth are erupting properly. But starting at around age two, kids need to begin receiving regular checkups and cleanings every six months, so we can monitor the smile as it grows and changes, and address any problems we discover along the way.
The checkup involves our team conducting a visual exam and using digital x-rays and intraoral cameras to take high-quality images of the smile. These will be available chairside for our team to examine, so we can look for the earliest stages of common problems like tooth decay, dental infection, and gingivitis, as well as teeth grinding too. We also make sure that baby teeth are falling out as they should, and that permanent teeth are arriving properly. During these visits we also discuss good oral health habits, and offer tips for keeping their smiles healthy and strong. Routine visits have also been shown to limit dental anxiety as kids, as they become accustomed to seeing the dentist and may be more likely to do so as adults.
During the same visit, our team will also clean the teeth. We use an ultrasonic scaling device and a manual tool to gently and carefully break up buildup. We then polish the teeth. This helps fight bad breath and teeth stains, and also limits the risk of cavities and gingivitis too. While brushing and flossing help limit plaque buildup and are essential for kids of all ages, a professional cleaning is necessary to completely remove the buildup in question and safeguard the smile.
During your child’s checkup and cleaning visit, we could also discuss unique preventive treatments to help lower the risk of cavities. We could apply a fluoride gel each visit to strengthen the outer enamel and make cavities less likely. Dental sealants can also be applied to prevent food from becoming stuck between the rear teeth!
Contact Your Shirley, NY, Orthodontist and Pediatric Dentist
We would like to help your children enjoy good oral health year around with an exam and cleaning. To learn more about how we safeguard little smiles with routine preventive visits, then contact Shirley Orthodontics and Pediatric Dentistry in Shirley, NY, by calling (631) 399-1600.