Preventive Dentistry

Here at West Coast Pediatric Dentistry, our primary goal is to educate our patients and their families on the importance of preventive dental care. Doing so, we can prevent dental issues before they start. With the advancements in dental research, materials, and techniques, preventive dentistry is allowing dentists and patients to work together to prevent cavities in the first place.

Why Prevention?

It takes time for cavities to form, they don’t happen overnight. Many dental problems that appear later in life start early and can be prevented with routine dental care and good home habits starting at a young age. We have a strong focus on prevention and diagnosing problems early, before they cause a major, costly problem. This is why we encourage early infant visits

The Importance of Dental Check-Up Visits

Regular check-ups are key in prevention and key in evaluating the child’s growth and development pattern. These visits help your child develop the understanding that the dentist is a fun place to visit and will build the foundation for a lifetime of healthy oral health habits. Regular visits help us look for any signs of the cavity process so that we can discuss and determine what factors may be contributing to this process.

Our pediatric dentist and team work carefully and gently with your child using child-friendly terms and activities to educate them about the importance of keeping their teeth healthy. Regular cleanings are important for removing the plaque and tartar that naturally builds up on and around the teeth over time. Clean teeth allow for better diagnosis and early cavity detection.

Your child may be due for radiographs (x-rays) at their check-up visit. Radiographs are extremely valuable and allow us to see the areas where the teeth tightly touch together and cannot be seen well just by looking. X-rays also allow us to determine the health of the bone around and how adult teeth are developing in the bone. X-rays are a crucial part of the dental exam to help us detect any problems starting before we can visually see them. The sooner problems are detected, the more conservative the treatment approach. Our office follows the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry Guideline on Prescribing Dental Radiographs for Infants, Children, Adolescents, and Persons with Special Health Care Needs. We are dedicated to providing safe, high quality pediatric imaging. 

Fluoride Treatment and Dental Sealants

Our office follows the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry Guideline on fluoride application and sealant placement.

We generally recommend the placement of a 5% sodium fluoride varnish on a 6-month basis because of the great benefits in reducing the risk for getting cavities. Some children may benefit from more frequent placement due to a higher risk for getting cavities.

Sealants are a tooth-colored protective coating painted on the deep grooves of the chewing surface of teeth. The procedure is quick and easy for children and helps prevent food and plaque from being trapped in hard to brush areas. Many studies have been done to show that well-placed sealants greatly decrease the risk of developing decay on the chewing surfaces of the treated teeth.

Children need your help and guidance, especially when it comes to brushing and eating healthy. We will help give you the information necessary on how to best supervise your child and help them with their oral hygiene.

Dental Trauma Prevention

We encourage our patients who are involved in contact sports to wear a mouthguard. A mouthguard is a very important aspect of an important aspect of dental trauma prevention. For kids at a young age, we recommend the boil and bite type of mouthguard due to their mouths consistently changing as baby teeth exfoliate and new permanent teeth erupt. These types of mouthguards are cost effective and still provide the benefit of protection.

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