Preventative dentistry is the practice of providing dental care to our patients for the purpose of preventing dental problems from developing. Rather than providing treatment after a condition, cavity, or injury has already occurred, we do find it best to first focus on prevention and maintenance. This may include routine check-ups and cleanings, as well as preventive treatments such as sealants. By providing regular dental care, it is possible to avoid many dental problems altogether, or at least catch them early on when they are easier to treat. If you have any questions about preventative dentistry or what our practice offers, please do not hesitate to contact us! Our Fort Mill, SC team will be more than happy to answer your questions and ensure your child is on the path to optimal dental health!
One of the most important factors involved in preventative dentistry is the oral care that your child receives at home. While routine dental appointments are incredibly important, allowing our team to carefully remove plaque and tartar and polish their teeth, we only see your child every six months. In between these visits, it is essential that your child’s smile care is maintained as a high priority.
Teaching children how to properly care for their teeth and gums is an important task for parents. Below are a few tips to help make the process easier:
- Start early – It is never too early to start teaching children how to take care of their teeth. Even infants can be introduced to basic oral care concepts by using a teething toy toothbrush or by hearing bedtime stories about oral care.
- Make it fun – Brushing and flossing teeth can sometimes seem like a chore, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Try making it into a game or singing a song while you do it.
- Make it regular – Establish a routine for brushing and flossing teeth, and make sure to stick to it. This will help make it easier for children to remember, and they will come to see it as a normal part of their day.
- Help them clean their teeth – Many children won’t be able to do a good job of brushing their own teeth until they are around six or seven years old. Until then, it is important to help them brush properly. This includes using the right amount of toothpaste and brushing the fronts, backs, and crowns of each tooth.
- Monitor their oral health – Be sure to check children’s teeth regularly for signs of decay or gum disease. If problems are detected, get them treated as soon as possible.
Dental sealants are a preventative service that we offer to protect children’s teeth from cavities. The sealant is a thin, plastic coating that is applied to the chewing surfaces of the back teeth. After being painted onto the surfaces of these teeth in a thin, translucent layer, it is allowed to dry and adhere to the tooth’s crown. The sealant acts as a barrier, protecting the vulnerable enamel from plaque and bacteria.
When food particles become lodged in the deep crevices and grooves along the surface of these teeth, the enamel can become compromised by the acidic substances; as the enamel continues to wear away under the attack of this bacteria, decay soon follows.
Dental sealants can last for several years, but they need to be checked and reapplied periodically. Our team will monitor the condition of the sealants at every six-month appointment and make sure you know when it’s time to reapply!
To learn more about dental sealants or other forms of smile protection, contact our office today!