Children’s Dental Checkups: What to Expect
You may be wondering if it’s necessary for your child to visit the dentist in Clear Lake, Texas on a regular basis. Or perhaps your child has their first dental cleaning coming up and you would both like to have a better idea of what to expect. Here’s an explanation of what may take place during any one of your child’s visits.
Our hygienist will be the first team member that your child sees during their dental cleaning appointment. To properly clean their teeth we’ll use scaler instruments to remove any plaque, tartar, and stains. We’ll also floss between the teeth and polish them all with a pumice-type toothpaste.
Oral Hygiene Tips
During your cleaning appointment, if our hygienist noticed certain areas that are consistently being missed when brushing then we can provide you and your child with some oral hygiene tips and techniques to try that should result in a better clean. There are likely some products that we can recommend that will also help to make your routine easier. Our goal is to give you all the knowledge and tools that you’ll need to be able to maintain a healthy mouth all year long.
The age of your child will depend on whether we take x-rays or not, and what kind we take.
For small children, we like to take a panoramic image that shows us their entire dentition in a single image. We can see all of their primary and permanent teeth and make sure that everything is developing as it should.
For older children, we like to have bitewing x-rays that allow us to see between their teeth so that we can get a better view of any cavities that might be lurking.
A full mouth series of x-rays is also important because it will show us the full length of each individual tooth. From the biting surface to the very tip of the root which is embedded in the jaw bone.
We’ll also want to check the wisdom teeth of older teens and young adults so another panorex is recommended starting at around age 16.
Our dentist will perform a thorough exam of your child’s mouth to check for cavities, jaw alignment, and tooth eruption patterns. We also examine the jaws, the way the upper and lower teeth bite together, the gums, and oral tissues like the cheeks, lips, and tongue. If any previous dental work has been done then we’ll look to ensure that it’s still holding up well.
If our dentist recommends dental sealants, then we can usually place those during the same visit. This simple treatment is recommended when your child has deep grooves in the biting surface of their permanent molars. Sealant material flows into the grooves, making a smoother layer that will deter plaque and be easier to brush. In turn, your child has a lower risk of developing cavities in these teeth. Placing sealants is a quick procedure that doesn’t require any numbing or drilling.
Fluoride is important for the healthy development of teeth and helps prevent cavities, as well as tooth sensitivity. It’s recommended that all children have a prescription-strength fluoride treatment at least twice per year. Treatments are available in varnish form, as a mouthwash, or as a foam.
Other Dental Treatment
If we spot any cavities or other dental issues that can be addressed, then we’ll schedule your child for an appointment to come back to correct those issues. Our Clear Lake dentist can answer any questions that you have and tell you what to expect at the next appointment.
Our treatment coordinator will go over costs with you and explain your dental insurance benefits so that you know what to expect financially.
It’s likely that a couple of times throughout your child’s life we’ll need to refer them to a specialist. For instance, oftentimes we recommend orthodontic evaluations at specific ages. And it’s very common for older teens and young adults to need to go to an oral surgeon to have their wisdom teeth removed if they’re impacted. But for the most part, your child can access everything their smile needs to stay healthy right here in our family practice.
Children’s Dentistry in Clear Lake
If you have a child that needs a dental checkup or is due for a cleaning, then look no further than Rosas Family Dentistry. We gladly treat the entire family at our general dentistry practice. Give us a call today to schedule an appointment.