A little bit of precaution in early age can avoid all the drilling and maintenance for your child.
Cavities have become a very common phenomenon in the young age group. These days pre-schoolers are getting more cavities than youngsters. Parents tend to visit their dentist only when the decay has caused permanent damage “Cavities”. We recognize the black hole in the teeth as tooth decay – but it is actually tooth decay that had started over a period of time and has become a permanent damage that needs all the drilling and maintenance.
Common causes of dental decay in children causing cavities
- Increased intake of sugars/refined foods.
- Inadequate tooth brushing and flossing.
- Negligence/lack of parental awareness.
- Inadequate fluoride in the drinking water.
- Lack of regular dental check up.
Can we reverse the dental decay and avoid future cavities?
Today there are very simple procedures available to reverse the process of decay and avoid future cavities. These treatments can be done at a very young age and are painless. These preventive treatments are available with pediatric dentists and are relatively inexpensive. In addition to regular tooth brushing and flossing these preventive measures can help you to avoid cavities in the future.
Pit and Fissure Sealants: There are natural irregularities and pits on the chewing surfaces of our back teeth called pits and fissures. They are most prone to develop cavities. You can seal them as early as 6/7 years when the first permanent tooth appears. In this procedure a a plastic material is used to cover providing long-term protection. It is a painless procedure.
Fluoride Therapy: Fluoride is a natural mineral that strengthens tooth enamel and helps prevent cavities from forming. Fluoride is present in our daily food and water, at times it is not adequate and we need external treatments. Highly concentrated fluoride gel / varnish can be applied onto the tooth’s surface to prevent decay in the future.
Regular Dental Check ups: First visit by first birthday and then regular dental checkups at 6 months intervals should be scheduled. It is a good idea to introduce your child to a pediatric dentist at a very young age. As your child grows, the doctor can help them to learn how to prevent common oral problems.
Look for a pediatric dentist for your child
A qualified pediatric dentist is a specialist dedicated to the oral health of children from infancy through adolescence. Pediatric dentists complete 2 or 3 years of additional specialized training beyond the required 4 years of dental school, which includes study in child psychology, growth and development. They are also trained and qualified to care for patients with medical, physical or mental disabilities. Their specialization allows them to provide treatment for a wide variety of children’s dental problems.
Pediatric dentist check-up checklist
- Detection of cavities (including nursing bottle decay)
- Check up of the health of the gums
- Pacifier and thumb sucking habits – evaluation and counseling
- Recording of the eruption sequence and development of teeth
- Braces/bite evaluation
- Review of home oral hygiene (brushing and flossing)
- Dietary counseling
- Educating parents about preventive care (sealants, fluoride etc.)
Article Contributed by
Dr Seema Vohra
G.P. (M.Sc. Restorative & Aesthetic Dentistry) U.K
CLOVER Medical & Dental Centre
Suite M06, Bin Thani Building, Bur Dubai
Contact: +971 0507680740
Suite No. 307, Warsan Tower
Next to: Dubai Media Rotanna, Tecom
Clinic Mobile: 0551209888
Dr. Seema Vohra is a graduate from university of Mumbai. She has worked in Mumbai and Dubai as a general dentist. She has good experience in preventive, restorative and aesthetic dentistry. She is dedicated in providing her patients with dental excellence, personal attention and high quality of dental care. She has her esteemed Degree in MSc in Restorative Aesthetic Dentistry from the U.K.