Dental Care Information and Tips
Our services include exams, cleanings, x-rays, cavity treatment, and providing preventative information.
*This is a brief overview of our dental care recommendations. For more detailed information, you may download the Preventative Information handout from our Forms page*
How did my child get the germs that cause cavities?
Are cavities inherited?
Chronic ilnesses such as asthma, allergies, and diabetes affect the immune system and may increase the risk of cavities. Younger children in a family have a tendency to have more cavities than older children.
My children live with smokers. Will that make cavities worse?
Hypoplastic (poorly formed) tooth enamel means the outer layer of the tooth did not develop properly. The enamel is weaker, more porous, may appear bright white, yellow, brown, or a mix of all three colors. It is caused by a disturbance in tooth development, such as high fever, multiple infections, inherited problems or caused by certain medical conditions. The development defects occur during the last trimester of the pregnancy through age 5. These teeth are very prone to cavities and breakage.
Tooth shape can influence the formation of cavities. Deep pits and grooves hold food and germs longer. Sealants can help prevent cavities on the biting surface of the tooth.
I'm pregnant. what can I do to help my child's teeth?
Brushing twice a day and flossing daily will reduce the risk of cavities. A mother's cavity causing germs can be transmitted to her child, so it is important to reduce plaque (germs and food buildup) and have teeth free of cavities before the birth of the child. Chewing XYLITOL containing gum is beneficial.
TOOTHBRUSHING TIPS AND FLOSSING - ALL CHILDREN AND TEENS
Toothbrushes - bent or frayed bristles do not clean effectively. Replace toothbrushes every 3 months. Do not share toothbrushes, cups, silverware, etc.
Xylitol - is a sweetener that prevents cavities. It is found in chewing gum such as Trident and Orbit. It is in some toothpastes, the most available brand is Tom's of Maine. Infants and toddlers can have their mouths wiped out with Spiffies.
Toothbrush - when the first teeth erupt, use a soft brush. Avoid the plastic finger brushes as they are too hard. Bent or frayed bristles do not clean effectively.
Don't let children swallow flouride toothpaste; wipe out any excess to avoid swallowing.
There is no value in using "flouride free" pastes unless they contain Xylitol, suce as Tom's of Maine toothpaste. Toddlers can practice spitting out the safe to swallow flouride free toothpaste such as Baby's Ora Gel, Oral B Little Bear, or Tom's of Maine Flouride Free.
Knocked out tooth - Rinse the tooth gently with cool water, DO NOT scrub or rub it, or clean it with soap. Replace the tooth into the socket. If you can't fit the tooth into the socket, transport it to the office in a container of milk, saliva (mouth spit), or cool water. Contact the office immediately, as the chances of saving the tooth are better the faster you act.
If a baby tooth is knocked out, DO NOT put it back in the socket, as it can damage the permanent tooth.
Broken tooth - Gently clean dirt or debris from the injured area with warm water. Place cold compresses on the face in the area of the injured tooth to minimize swelling. Contact our office immediately.
Bitten tongue or lip - Apply direct pressure to the affected area with a clean cloth. If swelling is present, apply ice to the area tp reduce swelling. If bleeding does not stop, go to a hospital emergency room.
Objects wedged between teeth - Try to remove the object with dental floss. Guide the floss carefully to avoid cutting the gums. If not successful in removing the object, contact our office. DO not try to remove the object with a sharp or pointed instrument.
Possible fractured jaw - Immobilize the jaw by any means such as a handkerchief, or towel. If swelling is present, apply cold compresses. Go to a hospital emergency room or contact our office.
If a serious, urgent and immediate need for dental care occurs after hours, you may contact the answering service at 248.662.5438. They will notify the doctor on call. Please do not call with questions that can be answered during normal business hours.