Pediatric oral health & hygiene.
Many parents think dental problems are more likely to occur in older kids. However, dental problems do affect young children. The most common pediatric dental issues include tooth decay and early gum disease. Maintaining your child’s oral health at home, along with regular professional cleanings, can keep dental problems at bay and help ensure a healthier future for your child. Read on to learn about the symptoms and consequences of childhood dental issues, and how you can prevent them.
Tooth decay occurs when bacteria in the mouth feed on sugars from foods and beverages. These bacteria produce acid, which damages the outer surface of tooth enamel. Common symptoms of decay include cavities and white spots that form on teeth. Babies also can develop decay if their teeth are in contact with sugars from milk, formula, or fruit juice for extended periods of time.
The good news is tooth decay is preventable. Avoid putting babies to bed with bottles and wipe their teeth and gums with a wet cloth after each feeding. If your child is older, consider limiting his or her consumption of sugary foods. A pediatric dentist can spot the early signs of tooth decay, so be sure to schedule regular checkups and professional cleanings.
Early gum disease is caused by plaque accumulation. Symptoms include bleeding, puffy or swollen gums. Treating gum disease early can prevent more serious problems from occurring in the future, such as inflammation of the gums, which can lead to bone and tooth loss. The best way to protect your child’s teeth is to teach good dental habits, such as daily brushing and flossing. Make the routine fun by letting your child choose his or her toothbrush and toothpaste flavor.
To learn more about common pediatric dental issues and how you can prevent them, see the accompanying infographic.
This infographic was created by Grove Dental, a dentist in Downers Grove
Teresa Tuttle is Marketing Director for Grove Dental Associates, a multi-specialty group dental practice in Chicago’s western suburbs. With more than 30 doctors and 50 years of practice experience, Grove Dental’s offices stay on the cutting edge of dentistry to better serve patients.