FAQs

INTRODUCTION

All the decay prevention protocols issued by the most advancedodontology associations recommend bringing your child to the dentist as soon as their first babyteeth erupts, or no later than their first birthdayin order to establish “good dental routine at home”, performing a decay risk assessment (DRA)and letting parents know what measures they should take to prevent decay and other oral problems.

There is an exaggerated public perception about the risk of using x-rays for general and dental diagnosis purposes. Digital x-ray has significantly reduced radiation compared to conventional x-rays. They cannot be avoided when required for proper diagnosis. They include monthly reading sensors and radiation levels are extremely low.

As a rule, children have dental check-ups every six months, during which we would examine gum health, cleaning habits, look for decay, monitor jaw growth, offer guidance on eruption, apply a fluoride treatment andkeep an eye on habits.

Any patient we consider to be high risk (poor diet, bad hygiene andfrequently-occurring decay) will be scheduled a check-up or control every 3 or 4 months.

INITIAL STAGES

Children can develop decay at any age as soon as they get their first teeth. Decay involves the interaction of three factors: sugar, plaque and an individual pre-disposition. Decay only occurs when these three factors are present.

Children that are breastfed do not generally need a dummy. If they are being bottle-fed, using a dummy reduces the risk of sucking their thumb. However,it is important to try to get them to stop using it by their first birthday. Using a dummy could lead to oral problems (depending on the duration and frequency of use).

There is no need to do anything except allow this normal process develop at its own pace. Some childrenlike pulling on their loose teeth (to speed up the Tooth Fairy visit), while others find it uncomfortable to touch them at all. There is nothing wrong with them doing whatever they feel like with their loose teeth.

Children whose tooth is loose for a significant amount of time without falling out might need their dentist to have a look at the tooth to see if there is any underlying cause that might need to be examined.

PREVENTION

From even before their first teeth emerge. Youshould clean babies’ teeth with gauze or a soft, damp clothwrapping the cloth or gauze around your index finger and running it softly over your baby’s gum.

They should start having their teeth brushed as soon as their first teeth start to erupt (generally around 6-9 months). They should have their teeth brushed at least twice a day, once in the morning and once at night, just before going to bed.

As soon as their first teeth erupt.

Parents must use a small amount of fluoridated toothpasteto brush babies’ teeth twice a day as soon as their first teeth erupt, using a suitably-sized toothbrush for their age.

Once they are 3 years of age, you can use a pea-sized amount of toothpaste, with parents supervising or helping them brush (or doing it for them).

We will start off with a toothpaste containing 1000 ppm (parts per million) of fluoride.

There is mounting scientific evidence demonstrating how necessary and effective the use of fluoride is for the prevention of decay. This is one of the most important preventative measures available to prevent this problem.

Fluorinated toothpaste for children should be used as the presence of this compound has been the only external factor shown to be capable of preventing decay. Toothpaste containing less than 1000 ppm of fluoride is not sufficiently effectiveto offer decay prevention.

We will use toothpastes containing 1000 ppm (partsper million) of fluoride from the time their first tooth erupts until they are 2 years of age. This goes up to 1000-1450 ppm from between 2 and 6 years of age. Children aged 6 and overuse 1450-2500 ppm. We use 5000 ppm for high-risk cases or serious molar-incisor hypo-mineralisation (MIH).

They are no better or no worse than manual ones. Children do not have the motor skills to brush their teeth properly until they are older. Parents usually brush their teeth during the first few years, later supervising them and occasionally helping them until they are about 8-10 years of age.

Yes, they can, just like adult teeth.

There is a strong link between early childhood tooth decay (ECTD) and the regular consumption of fermentable carbohydrates. Therefore, the consumption of any type of sugar when Streptococcus Mutans (SM) is present can lead to decay.

Decay develops more rapidly in baby teeth thanin adult teeth, while also affecting nerve tissue more quickly than in adult teeth.

Foods containing higher levels of sugar and foods with a soft, sticky consistency thatare low in fibre, such as cookies, pastries, sliced or soft bread, crisps, sweet bread, ice-cream, chocolate, etc.

Yes. It is sometimes difficult to clean all the tiny grooves and cracks, especially in the molars even when children brush their teeth and use dental floss, therefore making them susceptible to suffering decay. It is very important to look after both baby and adult molars and sealants are the best preventative solution.

DECAY

Yes. Tooth decay is one of the most frequent oral problems seen in children. It is important to remember the important role of teeth in facial, bone and muscular developmentas well as in the case of baby teeth to ensure the space necessary to allow future adult teeth to have room.

Baby teeth have nerve fibres just like adult teeth that make them sensitive. Failing to use anaesthesia during this procedure due to being afraid of how the child will respond will negatively affect their immediate behaviourdue to being aware of the painful sensation, making them lose confidence and not cooperate while also making them more nervous and creating long-term negative associations with going to the dentist. Practically all procedures must be performed with anaesthesia.

INJURIES

It is important to go to your dentist as soon as possible for any dental injury, including to baby teeth, since even seemingly innocuous injuries could end up affecting the life of the tooth.

Collect them, put them in a container with saline solution and bring them to the dentist. This allows the fragments to remain moist and not lose colour due to not drying out, facilitating the process of aesthetic restoration.

MALOCCLUSIONS

There is no general answer to this question. It really depends on each individual case. Each problemis unique and must be examined depending on the issue rather than the child’s age. There is a general belief that orthodontic treatment starts whenever all the adult teeth have erupted. However, this is not the casesince it is already too late to treat many conditions by this age.

Teeth will not move if patients use retainers. Failing to use them may result in teeth moving. Teeth tend to want to move back to their original position when this position has been changed.

LASER

By reducing the amount of local anaesthesia required, less pain is felt with the concentration of a large amount of energy in a very small space, improving the results of conventional surgery. Its clotting and anti-infective properties allow the tissue being operated on and the tissue surrounding the one that has been cut or vaporised (removed) to recover in much less time and with greater ease, fewer after-effects and less scarring. The reduction in bleeding and bacteriemia is very beneficial.

It is used for surgical procedures such as maxillary, lingual and mandibular frenectomies; papilomas, eruption cysts, operculectomies, pyogenic granulomas, dentigerous cysts, gingivectomies, crown elongation; certain pulpar treatments; exposure of unerupted teeth, and apicoectomies.

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