The Wiggly Tooth Pediatric Dentistry

Pediatric Dentistry FAQ's

Parents should take their children to the dentist regularly, beginning with the eruption of the first tooth.  Then, the dentist can recommend a specific program of brushing, flossing, and other treatments for parents to practice with their children.  These home treatments, when added to regular dental visits and a balanced diet, will help give your child a lifetime of healthy dental habits.

Pediatric dentists are the pediatricians of dentistry.  A pediatric dentist has two to three years specialty training following dental school and limits his/her practice to treating children only.  Pediatric dentists are primary and specialty oral care providers for infants and children through adolescence, including those with special health needs.

In order to prevent dental problems, your child should see a pediatric dentist when the first tooth appears, or no later than his/her first birthday.

A toothbrush will remove plaque bacteria that can lead to decay.  Any soft-bristled toothbrush with a small head, preferably one designed specifically for infants, should be used at least twice a day. In the morning after your little one wakes up and at night before bedtime.

Primary, or “baby,” teeth are important for many reasons.  Not only do they help children speak clearly and chew naturally, they also aid in forming a path that permanent teeth can follow when they are ready to erupt. The habits your child develops regarding oral healthcare are most likely the habits they carry into adulthood. Set a good example!

Thumb and pacifier sucking habits will generally only become a problem if they go on for a very long period of time. Most children stop these habits on their own, but if they are still sucking their thumbs or fingers when their permanent teeth arrive, a mouth appliance may be recommended by your pediatric dentist.

“A smear at a year and a pea at three.” 

Fluoridated toothpaste should be introduced when a child grows baby teeth!  Prior to age three, only use the tiniest amount of toothpaste that is barely visible on a toothbrush. If you are worried about your child swallowing toothpaste, clean their mouth with a damp washcloth when you are finished brushing. 

When toothpaste is used after age 3, parents should supervise brushing and make sure the child uses no more than a pea-sized amount on the brush.  Children should avoid swallowing any excess toothpaste.

Make sure your child has a balanced diet, including one serving each of:  fruits and vegetables, breads and cereals, milk and dairy products, and meat fish and eggs.  Limiting the servings of sugars and starches will also aid in protecting your child’s teeth from decay.  You can also ask your pediatric dentist to help you select foods that protect your child’s teeth.

Sealants work by filling in the crevasses on the chewing surfaces of the teeth.  This shuts out food particles that could get caught in the teeth, causing cavities.  The application is fast and comfortable and can effectively protect teeth for many years.

A check-up every six months is recommended in order prevent cavities and other dental problems.  However, your pediatric dentist can tell you when and how often your child should visit based on their oral health.

First, rinse the irritated area with warm salt water and place a cold compress on their face if it is swollen.  Give the child acetaminophen for any pain, rather than placing aspirin on the teeth or gums.  Finally, contact our office as soon as possible! 

If your child is in pain, and for whatever reason you cannot bring them to the office today, please schedule an emergency Teledentistry appointment in order to address your child’s needs. A comprehensive

Teledentistry has been around for a long time, but gained recognition during COVID-19. If your child is in pain and you are not able to bring your child to the office for whatever reason, a teledentistry(video conference) visit can be scheduled to address your child’s immediate needs. New patients will be required to first register online through our patient resources tab. 

Teledentistry does not replace the need for an in-office examination and is only meant to serve as an adjunct to services provided in-office.

Avoid nursing children to sleep or putting anything other than water in their bed-time bottle.  Also, learn the proper way to brush and floss your child’s teeth.  Take your child to a pediatric dentist regularly to have his/her teeth and gums checked.  The first dental visit should be scheduled by your child’s first birthday.

Soft plastic mouth guards can be used to protect a child’s teeth, lips, cheeks, and gums from sport related injuries.  A custom-fitted mouth guard developed by a pediatric dentist will protect your child from injuries to the teeth, face, and even provide protection from severe injuries to the head.

There is very little risk associated with dental X-rays.  Pediatric dentists are especially careful to limit the amount of radiation to which children are exposed.  Lead aprons and high-speed film are used to ensure safety and minimize the amount of radiation exposure.

It is most important to remain calm and find the tooth.  Hold it by the crown rather than the root and try to reinsert it into the socket.  If that is not possible place the tooth in a glass of milk and take your child and the tooth to your pediatric dentist immediately!