Caring for baby teeth
Caring for your child’s baby teeth is essential to their lifelong dental health, even though these teeth will eventually fall out. Baby teeth help your little one: • Chew their food • Speak and smile • Hold space for the permanent teeth that will come in later
If baby teeth are lost too early because of cavities, other baby teeth can drift into that open space, making it hard for the permanent teeth to find room.
Tooth Fairy Kids and the Canadian Dental Association recommend that you have your baby’s teeth checked by a dentist within six months of the first tooth coming in, or by one year of age, whichever comes first.
A checkup every six months will help insure a healthy smile for life. We make sure our young patients feel safe and comfortable as we check for cavities and assess their bite, clean their teeth and apply fluoride, and teach them how to care for their teeth at home. We also provide a complete plan for treatment and prevention.
We use digital x-rays to get a clear picture of your child’s teeth. Faster and more accurate than film, digital x-rays expose your child to less radiation and avoid the use of toxic chemicals.
If your child has a dental emergency, such as teeth that are broken or chipped, loose, knocked out, or painful, we are here to help. We can also treat sports injuries, including a broken jaw.
Hypnosis: For nervous kids, we use a playful hypnosis-based approach that engages their imaginations and transforms going to the dentist from scary to fun.
Minimal sedation: If your child is a little bit nervous during a simple procedure, nitrous oxide (“laughing gas”) is a safe, effective way to help them cope.
Moderate sedation: If your child is more than a little nervous, or has greater treatment needs, moderate or “conscious” sedation (done in the office) is an option we can discuss with you.
General anesthesia: If your child is very anxious, has special medical needs, or requires a lot of dental work, we can discuss using general anesthesia. It is done at a surgical centre by an anesthesiologist.
Fissure sealants: Bacteria love to hide in all the little grooves on the back teeth. We apply sealants to prevent plaque and bacteria from causing cavities on these biting surfaces.
Space maintainers: When a baby tooth is lost too early, space maintainers hold the space open so the permanent teeth can erupt in the right place. This prevents future crowding and orthodontic complications.
Sports guards: Required in most sports, custom fit sports guards ensure proper protection when your child is actively engaged in sports.
If your child has a cavity, we will help you choose the best option for fillings or other treatment.
Extraction may be the best option if there is severe crowding, a baby tooth that has stayed in the mouth too long, or a painful or infected tooth. We can perform most extractions in our office using local anesthesia with or without sedation.
For children who are anxious or who cannot co-operate in dental procedures (such as children with special needs), we can use silver diamine fluoride. This safe, painless alternative to fillings is a liquid applied to teeth to help prevent cavities from forming, growing, or spreading to other teeth.
Caring for special needs
Our goal for patients with special needs is to give them a safe, comfortable “dental home” where they will be happy to receive regular dental care throughout their childhood.
We help kids get familiar with our office over a series of short appointments. From the dental chair to the suction and mirror, we break all the equipment and procedures into simple steps and reward them as they learn.
We may use pictures to explain things, especially for kids who have limited verbal abilities. Most of all, we keep things fun, with lots of praise and smiles!.