Pediatric Dentistry Overview

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When you’re looking for a pediatric or family dentist in or around Spring Lake, MI, we at Arbutante Dental aim to be your premier choice. As your trusted pediatric dentist, it’s our goal to put your child on the path toward a healthy smile for life. A lifetime of healthy teeth begins with a child’s primary (baby) teeth and we want to help provide the pediatric dentistry treatments and advice necessary to give your child the best possible head start.

The Importance of Primary Teeth

It’s unfortunate to say that many people don’t believe that taking care of primary teeth is important simply because they fall out at an early age. However, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Primary teeth actually play a vital role for your child in the following ways:

  • Primary teeth will serve as the guides for your child’s permanent teeth. These primary teeth hold the spots open for the permanent teeth and will naturally fall out when the permanent teeth push against their roots. If your child’s primary teeth fall out early, the permanent teeth may shift into misalignment.
  • Primary teeth will help your kid with the critical tasks of chewing properly and speaking clearly.
  • Building a proper oral hygiene regimen for primary teeth will help develop healthy dental habits for when your child’s permanent teeth come in.

Your Child's First Teeth

 Kids mouth anatomy.

Your child’s 20 primary teeth will usually begin to appear between six and nine months of age. The first ones to erupt tend to be the two lower front teeth and they’re shortly followed by the two upper ones. Then, the first molars will come in, followed by the canines. If your baby happens to experience any teething discomfort during this time, please don’t hesitate to let us know and we’ll advise you on how to treat it most effectively.

To properly clean your infant’s gums and newly erupted teeth, you should gently wipe them with a water-soaked gauze pad or a damp washcloth after each feeding. By the age of two, you should start establishing a daily brushing routine for your child. When brushing, it’s best to use a small, soft-bristled toothbrush and a thin strip of toothpaste that contains fluoride. You’ll probably need to help your child with this task until the age of six.

Your Child's First Dental Appointment

Age one dental visit

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that you have your child visit a pediatric or family dentist by his or her first birthday. When you come to see us during this time, we’ll be able to check for cavities, watch for any developmental problems, and teach you proper oral hygiene techniques. We also want to make sure that your child has a positive experience with us and doesn’t grow nervous of going to the dentist because we want your child to be able to attain all the benefits that pediatric dentistry can offer.

Pediatric Dental Treatments

At Arbutante Dental, we provide a large selection of dental treatments in order to prevent children’s tooth decay and repair or save teeth when necessary. Some of our pediatric dentistry treatments we offer include:

Topical Fluoride: When fluoride is applied to teeth, it will incorporate into the enamel, making a patient’s teeth harder and more resistant to decay. While fluoride exists in toothpaste, drinking water, and many foods, it’s only there in small quantities. In our Spring Lake, MI office, we’re able to apply a higher concentration onto your child’s teeth in order to achieve a maximum level of protection.

Dental Sealants: Dental sealants are plastic coatings that are applied to the chewing surfaces of the back teeth. Sealants are incredibly useful because the small crevices on the back teeth are susceptible for decay-causing bacteria to get trapped in. The procedure for applying sealants is very simple and it will provide protection to a child’s teeth for years to come.

Root Canal Treatment: Root canal treatment is used in order to save a tooth that’s badly damaged or severely decayed. While many people think that root canals are only used on permanent teeth, they’re actually used on primary teeth as well. By saving these primary teeth, we may end up preventing your child from requiring future orthodontic treatment.

Bonding: Bonding materials can be used to repair minor fractures and chips to the front teeth. These lifelike resins are made of plastic and glass and can be used on both primary and permanent teeth.

Orthodontic Concerns

 Orthodontic Problems.

By the age of seven, most orthodontic problems will be apparent. Interceptive orthodontic treatment is useful at this age because we’re able to help direct proper tooth positioning and jaw growth in order to simplify or eliminate the need for later treatment. Most orthodontic problems can be identified early, which is why it’s important to have a trained professional evaluate your child at a young age.

Our Free Under Three Program

Both the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry and the American Academy of Pediatrics recommend that a child should visit the dentist by his or her first birthday or no more than six months after the first tooth erupts. By taking your child to the dentist at an early age, you can help prevent tooth decay and learn the most efficient oral care habits. At Arbutante Dental, we agree with the importance of these early childhood visits so in order to encourage this, we’re offering free exams for any child under the age of three. Any kid who’s under three will receive a thorough dental exam, oral hygiene instructions, and a goodie bag that includes useful dental supplies – all for free!

Contact Your Spring Lake, MI Pediatric Dentist Today!

If you’re looking for a pediatric or family dentist, you’ve come to the right place! We encourage you to give us a call at (616) 842-0090 or fill out our online appointment request form if you’re interested in scheduling an appointment. Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions. We look forward to helping your child achieve a lifetime of healthy smiles!

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