Oral Conditions Your Child May Face
As a parent, you want to ensure your little one's smile is as bright as their personality. Without proper care and routine, however, your child's mouth may develop a variety of conditions. Many of these problems can be prevented with good oral hygiene habits and regular visits to the dentist.
In this blog post, we will discuss the most common pediatric oral conditions and provide tips on how to prevent them from occurring in order to keep your kid's pearly whites sparkling!
One of the most common and recognized pediatric oral conditions is cavities. These are caused by bacteria that live in the mouth and produce acids that eat away at the tooth enamel. If left untreated, they can cause pain, infection, and even tooth loss.
The best way to prevent cavities is by brushing twice a day with fluoride toothpaste, flossing daily, and visiting the dentist regularly.
It can also help to limit your child's sugar intake. Snacks and beverages like soda, candy, ice cream, and other treats are okay once in a while — but too much can work against your efforts in keeping their smile healthy.
Another common oral condition that affects children is tooth sensitivity. This pain occurs when eating or drinking something too hot, cold, or sweet.
Sensitivity can be caused by a number of reasons including:
- Brushing too hard
- Acidic foods and drinks
- Gum disease
- Tooth decay
- Some medications
If your child is experiencing sensitivity, their dentist may recommend using a toothpaste for sensitive teeth or a fluoride mouthwash.
It might be hard to imagine your little one having gum disease at such a young age. However, gingivitis is another oral condition that commonly affects children. It is an inflammation of the gums that can be caused by plaque buildup.
Plaque is a sticky film of food debris, bacteria, and saliva. If not removed, it can harden and turn into tartar - which can only be removed by a dental professional.
If gingivitis is left untreated, it can lead to more serious gum problems like periodontal disease.
The best way to prevent gingivitis is through proper oral hygiene. This includes brushing twice a day, flossing daily, and visiting the dentist regularly.
As your child's teeth begin to come in, you may notice that they are not straight or aligned properly. This is nothing to worry about as it is quite common for children to have orthodontic problems such as misalignment, crossbites, and overbites.
If your child has any of these problems, their dentist may recommend orthodontic treatment, such as braces.
Many children suck their thumb or fingers — this is perfectly normal and nothing to worry about. However, if thumb sucking continues past the age of four or after their permanent teeth come in, your child's teeth may become misaligned or crowded.
Bad breath, or halitosis, is another common oral condition that can affect children. It can be caused by:
- Dry mouth
- Bacteria in the mouth
- Eating certain foods
- Poor oral hygiene
Combat bad breath by keeping your child hydrated, encouraging flossing and twice-daily teeth brushing, and using mouthwash when needed.
Tooth grinding, or bruxism, is common in children. Your child may be experiencing this due to:
- A misaligned bite
If tooth grinding persists, your dentist may recommend wearing a mouthguard at night.
Pediatric Dental Care in Phoenix
The team at Total Kids Dental is here to make your child feel safe and comfortable as we take care of all their dental needs. Give us a call at (602) 610-0338 to book your first appointment today!