Preventive Dentistry Protects Your Child’s Teeth
Children have their own sets of skills and strengths. They make us smile and laugh. They fill our lives with joy and meaning. They may even make their own beds. But one thing they probably can improve upon is the cleaning of their teeth. For little hands, brushing and flossing can be a challenge. That’s why preventive dental care for children is so important. Without those regular cleanings and exams, tooth decay and other dental problems can develop. Mclean, VA, pediatric dentist Dr. Neda Etessam and her team are ready to help ensure that your children have the groundwork for a lifetime of healthy and happy smiles!
Kids may be unable to do a thorough brushing of their own teeth. Thus, cavities and gum disease are a risk. Plaque is a sticky, bacteria-filled substance that’s constantly forming over tooth surfaces and in the mouth, threatening decay. While it can be cleared away easily with effective oral hygiene, missed areas can develop into the much more stubborn tartar over time; which has to be removed by our skilled and friendly dental team here in McLean, VA.
Our dental team specializes in treating children and providing dental cleanings that are thorough, gentle, and even fun! In addition to removing plaque and tartar from our patient’s mouth, we will provide helpful instructions for brushing and flossing more effectively. Our goal is to leave your son or daughter with a happy smile that feels special!
When your children have their teeth cleaned, Dr. Etessam will perform a comprehensive exam of their teeth and gums. This will include an oral cancer screening, as well as checking for any signs of common problems like tooth decay and gum disease; and any possible developmental problems. We will want to identify these concerns as soon as possible so that they can be treated simply and effectively; avoiding the need for more involved care later in life.
Our team will also take a series of X-rays, if necessary, in order to identify problems that are not visually evident in your child’s smile. Once Dr. Etessam has a complete understanding of his/her personal oral health needs, she’ll discuss the findings with you. She will then recommend any restorative or orthodontic care that will be advantageous to your child.
Fluoride Treatments and Dental Sealants
As your children mature and more of their permanent teeth erupt, Dr. Etessam is likely to recommend two other preventive dental treatments. Many of our young patients benefit from fluoride varnish or fluoridated mouthwash applications. Fluoride is a mineral that helps to strengthen each tooth’s outer layer of enamel. With stronger enamel, your child is better armed to fight tooth decay. The application is easy—we just paint the fluoride varnish on the teeth; or your child may elect to swish with our fluoride mouthwash.
Dental sealants provide a more permanent prevention against cavities. Tooth decay more frequently occurs in molars that are grooved—and harder to reach—so sealants are applied to these back teeth. They go on as a clear or white plastic coating, and dry to a hard finish after a few minutes under a curing light. Dr. Etessam will check the condition of your children’s sealants at their regular dental checkups, but they can typically last for one to two years .
Because children are at such a high risk for tooth decay, Dr. Etessam and the rest of our team strive to do whatever we can to help strengthen and protect their healthy teeth. That is why fluoride treatments are such a vital part of their regular appointments!
Is your child experiencing bruxism (teeth grinding) on a daily basis? Does he/she participate in a sport where physical contact is a possibility? These are situations that warrant the use of an athletic mouthguard to protect vulnerable teeth from potential damage. Instead of purchasing a “one-size-fits-all” appliance at the store, we encourage parents to invest in a high-quality, custom fitted mouthguard from Dr. Etessam .
Dental emergencies are always frightening, especially when they involve the youngest, most vulnerable members of your family. If your child has experienced a traumatic dental injury or is complaining about severe dental pain, please do not hesitate to pick up the phone and contact McLean Children’s Dentistry . Dr. Etessam makes every effort to see patients from Tysons Corner, VA and surrounding areas as soon as possible. Our team members can also provide first-aid assistance over the phone, as well as recommendations for whether an emergency room visit is warranted. We consider the following situations urgent in nature:
- Lost permanent teeth
- Painful toothache
- Cracked tooth
- Any facial swelling that may be due to an oral infection
- Broken teeth due to trauma
- Oral bleeding
- Gum tissue injury
- Jaw injury
In the case of a lost baby tooth, we do not recommend reimplantation because it could damage the growing permanent tooth underneath. However, your child should be examined by Dr. Etessam.
Dr. Etessam specializes in pediatric dentistry. The Consumer Research Council of America has selected Dr. Etessam as one of “America’s Top Pediatric Dentists“. McLean, VA residents looking for a qualified pediatric dentist may either call us or request an appointment online.