For those of us with children, it can be very important to ensure that they are getting the best dental treatment they can from the moment the first tooth appears. This can occur anytime from the first to sixth month of life and needs to be monitored as diligently as you would a permanent tooth. Because every primary tooth can be vital to proper oral development, it is crucial to find a dentist who can provide exemplary dental care for babies, toddlers, adolescents, and even teenagers who have many of their permanent teeth already. Geelan Dental Care understands how necessary it can be to accommodate your child’s specific needs and have dedicated several extra hours to specialized training just so we can.
The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends a routine check-up up roughly twice a year. A routine appointment with Aron Geelan, DMD will typically include a professional cleaning and a detailed examination of your teeth, gums, and other oral tissues. We may also recommend an oral cancer screening for our older patients.
Our team of professionals at Geelan Dental Care offers complete dental exams as a vital part of preventive health care. The dental exam process involves cleaning your teeth and checking for gum disease and cavities. The dental exam also involves an evaluation of your risk to any other oral problems and a checkup of your mouth, neck, and face for abnormalities.
The dental exam process may include procedures such as dental x-rays and other diagnostic procedure. A discussion of your oral hygiene habits and diet may be necessary during a dental exam, including proper flossing and brushing techniques as well as lifestyle factors that might affect your oral health.
At Geelan Dental Care we consider oral cancer screenings to be an important health check for high-risk patients. These screenings involve a visual and physical examination of the oral cavity, throat, lips, head, and neck areas to identify any possible signs of abnormal cancerous cells. Cancer may present itself in a variety of ways including lesions, sores, or lumps. However, in most cases where such conditions are present, they are non-cancerous.
Early detection of mouth cancer tends to allow for less invasive treatment and improves the chances of full recovery.
A dental sealant is a thin, plastic coating that prevents cavities and tooth decay. Sealants are usually applied to the occlusal (bite) surface of the molars and premolars. These teeth possess deep grooves and fissures that are much harder to clean, especially for children and teenagers. Sometimes the grooves are so thin that the bristles of a toothbrush are rendered essentially ineffective. A sealant will provide a more even brushing surface and seal off the enamel from harmful bacteria. Preventing tooth decay will ensure your child’s smile remains beautiful for years to come!
Fluoride is a naturally-occurring mineral found in many of our foods and beverages. It is also a useful tool in fighting tooth decay. Every day, our teeth lose and gain minerals through the processes of demineralization and remineralization. If the process of demineralization exceeds that of remineralization tooth decay will occur.
Professional fluoride treatment allows us to supplement the process of remineralization and prevent potential decay. It can even reverse minor instances of decay. Fluoride treatment is particularly beneficial for patients at a greater risk of tooth decay, such as children, teens, and seniors.
Your periodontal (gum) tissues are just as important as your teeth. Periodontal disease is the leading cause of tooth loss in the United States. Periodontal disease is the result of an infection in the gum tissues, connective ligaments, and eventually the alveolar bone.
The disease is characterized by gums that are swollen, red, and tend to bleed during brushing and flossing. Luckily, periodontal disease is easy to prevent and treat if it is caught early enough. If we notice signs of advanced periodontal disease, we may recommend a scaling and root planing procedure. The goal is to return your gums to a pink, healthy state.
If you participate in physical activities that put you at risk for dental trauma or injury, we strongly recommend a mouthguard. A mouthguard will protect your teeth and prevent dental emergencies.
If you suffer from bruxism (teeth grinding), we may also recommend a night guard. Many patients with bruxism tend to grind their teeth during sleep. A night guard acts as a barrier that prevents enamel wear.
If you have obstructive sleep apnea, you may benefit from an oral appliance. An oral appliance will keep your jaw in the proper position during sleep. This opens your airway and improves your breathing during sleep. With an oral appliance, you may find yourself feeling more well-rested, alert and happy, thanks to a full night's sleep.
The temporomandibular joint (TMJ), allows us to move our joint forwards, backward, and side-to-side. Any problems that prevent us from using this joint properly are known as TMD or temporomandibular joint disorders. We provide some treatments designed to alleviate any pain or discomfort associated with the TMJ.
Professional dental care is a crucial part of your child's oral health. Be sure to schedule your child's first appointment by the time their first teeth erupt, or before their first birthday. Scheduling regular appointments allows us to monitor the development of their oral health. Developmental problems are easier to treat in the beginning stages.
As your child grows older, we can establish a strong foundation for their oral health, one that will ensure a lifetime of healthy, beautiful teeth.
Why Are Baby Teeth Important?
Many people who choose to neglect their child’s first teeth since they will be lost anyway, may not understand what the purpose of a baby tooth. It can be easy to overlook the need to teach proper dental care for something so temporary when in reality these first teeth are the very necessary placeholders that ensure proper guidance for the permanent replacements that will be coming in within a few short years. Several orthodontic issues can be attributed to poor dental habits that resulted in premature tooth loss in small children. Especially since these first teeth will be used to introduce the solid foods that will nourish them, it can be very difficult to eat if they are not strong enough to chew.
We recommend children time their first appointment within six months of the arrival of their first tooth. Often, we will allow the child to sit on your lap for a brief inspection and to allow them to become more comfortable around us. As your child progresses in age and gains more teeth, around the age of four, we may request you remain in the waiting room during your child’s appointment so we can establish rapport with them. By the age of seven, many children already have a combination of both baby and adult teeth. It is necessary at this age that they understand the importance of caring for the permanent teeth which will need to last them for a long time.
Many family dentists have a unique care approach when working with children, and our staff is specifically trained to work with children during an unfamiliar dental experience, which may reduce much of their anxiety. Because we consider the needs of our younger patients to be so essential to their care, it can also help pave the way for a more confident approach to routine dental visits when they are an adult.
How Family Dentistry Can Benefit You
Understanding the development of teeth at any age, whether they are a newborn or geriatric, can help us provide you with optimal service. Anticipating a teenager’s needs during a time of growth and changes makes it possible for us to help the transition into adulthood less awkward for them. We can even detect issues and use a specialized plan of prevention before it ever has to become a problem.
If you have any questions about our family dentistry options or how we can work with you to attend to your child’s special needs, please stop by our office here at Geelan Dental Care or call us at (971) 323-1990 to schedule an appointment.