PREVENTIVE PEDIATRIC DENTAL CARE
Infant Oral Health Consultation and Evaluation
The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) recommends that infants are seen by a pediatric dentist 6 months after the first tooth erupts or grows in. On your infant’s first visit, Dr. Hom will examine the soft tissues as well as any teeth that have grown in the mouth. She and her staff will go over proper oral hygiene techniques and diet. Most importantly, Dr. Hom will discuss preventive measures to help maintain good oral health.
Cavity Prevention Education
During your child’s oral examination and evaluation of any radiographs (x-rays) that are taken, Dr. Hom will determine if any dental caries is present and assess your child’s risk for getting cavities. She and her staff will educate the parent on brushing and flossing techniques as well as discuss the importance of a balanced diet on dental health. For younger children, Dr. Hom recommends that parents participate in their child’s oral hygiene routine. For older children, she and her staff will educate your child on how to properly brush and floss so that they can establish good oral hygiene habits that will last a lifetime.
Oral Health Examination
During your child’s dental visit, Dr. Hom and our dental hygiene team will examine your child’s teeth and gums. With the help of dental radiographs (x-rays), she will be able to confirm clinical findings as well as diagnose dental decay in between teeth which are not visible in the clinical exam. Dental radiographs will also allow us to diagnose any dental anomalies which may be present and help us provide your child with the proper treatment. Your child’s periodontal or gum health can be assessed with our clinical exam as well as with the dental radiographs. Because we our pediatric dental specialists, child-friendly terms will be used during this assessment and your child will think we are simply “counting” their teeth and getting the “sugar bugs” off their teeth with our “tickly tooth brush”.
Part of our oral evaluation is an evaluation of the alignment of your child’s teeth as well as their “bite” or how their teeth come together. Even on a very young child, Dr. Hom will make an assessment of their alignment and bite and determine their potential need for orthodontics or braces. As your child begins to lose their baby teeth and permanent teeth start to grow in, Dr. Hom will address any orthodontic concerns parents may have with their child’s bite. She will determine if and when your child will need to visit an orthodontist. Timing for orthodontics varies for each child based on their age, alignment, bite and amount of permanent teeth present. She and her team can discuss the effects of certain oral habits such as thumb/digit sucking or pacifier habits which can affect a child’s bite and alignment. Parents will be given suggestions on how to help their child stop such oral habits.
Dental Cleaning/Prophylaxis and Fluoride Treatment
Dental cleanings will be performed by our experienced dental hygiene team. Our dental hygienists are trained in working with children of all ages. They will put your child at ease with explaining the procedure in child-friendly terms and ensure that they have a positive and happy experience. Your child will have their teeth cleaned and polished with their choice of toothpaste flavors that we have available.
Dr. Hom follows the ADA and AAPD’s recommendation of a fluoride treatment. The application of fluoride varnish is usually applied after a dental cleaning or prophylaxis. Research has shown that fluoride prevents and reduces the risk for dental caries. Dr. Hom and her dental hygiene team can answer any questions you may have about fluoride.
Digital X-rays (Radiographs) and Intra-oral Cameras
Our office takes pride in having the latest technology in dental radiography. Digital x-rays enable dentists to produce x-ray images without the use of film, chemicals or a darkroom, and save and share images electronically. Most importantly, patients are exposed to as much as 90% less radiation when digital x-rays are used. Another advantage is that less time is required of the patient.
Intra-oral cameras are available for our staff to take photographs of teeth so that parents can see exactly what we see during our oral exam.
Sealants (BPA Free)
A sealant is an acrylic-like material that bonds with the tooth to help prevent bacteria from sticking to the grooves and causing tooth decay. The sealant is bonded onto the grooves of the teeth which forms a protective covering over the enamel of each tooth. They are a safe, painless and low cost way to protect your child’s teeth. Sealants are usually applied to molars since the pits and grooves of molars are the most susceptible for decay. It is recommended that sealants be placed on permanent molars and sometimes, premolars. In some cases where there is a high risk for decay, sealants are placed on primary molars as well.
Sports Mouth Guards
Sports mouth guards which are custom-made for your child have been proven to prevent orofacial injuries during sporting and recreational activities more effectively than store bought “boil and bite” and stock mouth guards. The Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends sports mouth guards to any child participating in team sports.
Discover the importance of your child's first set of teeth and how to keep them healthy.
Baby Bottle Tooth Decay
Read the causes and how to prevent baby bottle tooth decay for your baby.
What are sealants and how do dentists use them to protect your child's teeth.|
Discuss with your pediatric dentist a recommended orthodontic assessment for your child.
As a parent, you can learn how to quickly act on dental emergencies before the dentist visit.