Deborah Ashcraft, DMD, PC

 

Procedures

What does Nitrous Oxide analgesia do for the pediatric patient?

Why would a child need oral sedation or general anesthesia (hospital dentistry) just to have their teeth fixed?

Is there a safer, less risky way to treat a child's teeth?

Is it likely that a child under sedation or anesthesia will suffer serious complications or die while under a pediatric dentist's care?

How can parents be sure their child is safe in a dental office?

PEDIATRIC DENTAL EDUCATION

What is a pediatric dentist?

What should I use to clean my baby's teeth?

When should I take my child to the dentist for the first check-up?

What is the difference between a pediatric dentist and a family dentist?

Are baby teeth really that important to my child?

What should I do if my child has a toothache?

Are thumbsucking and pacifier habits harmful for a child's teeth?

How can I prevent decay caused by nursing?

How often does my child need to see the pediatric dentist?

Toothpaste: when should we begin using it and how much should we use?

How do I make my child's diet safe for his teeth?

How do dental sealants work?

How do I know if my child is getting enough fluoride?

What can I do to protect my child's teeth during sporting events?

What should I do if my child falls and knocks out a permanent tooth?

How safe are dental X-rays?

How can parents help prevent tooth decay?


 
Children Teeth



Baby Brushing
What should I do if my child has a toothache? See Answer


Baby Dental
When should I take my child to the dentist for the first check-up?
See Answer



Girl with Backpack
How often does my child need to see the pediatric dentist? See Answer


Child Brushing
Toothpaste: when should we begin using it and how much should we use? See Answer


HealthyDiet
How do I make my child's diet safe for his teeth? See Answer


Thumbsucking
Are thumbsucking and pacifier habits harmful for a child's teeth?
www.myspecialshirt.com

See Answer



Fluoride
How do I know if my child is getting
enough fluoride? See Answer


Fluoride
How do dental sealants work?
See Answer


FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Procedures


What does Nitrous Oxide analgesia do for the pediatric patient?
Nitrous Oxide is a procedure that helps your child feel comfortable during dental treatment.

1.) It allows your child to breath more oxygen than one can normally breath from the air while enjoying a remarkable depth of relaxation.

2.) It virtually eliminates the apprehension, nervousness, and tension associated with dental procedures and it allows for a cooperative, well-managed pediatric patient. It also helps to reduce gagging.

3.) It usually induces a feeling of warmth and security, as well as a pleasant "floating" sensation.

4.) It permits needed injections of local anesthetic (Lidocaine) without discomfort, with more profound results in most instances.

5.) You should remember that analgesia in no way resembles general anesthesia because your child is always awake.
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Why would a child need oral sedation or general anesthesia (hospital dentistry) just to have their teeth fixed?
Unfortunately, many children suffer from serious, potentially painful dental diseases. Unlike such health conditions as colds or flu, dental diseases won't go away on their own. When treatment is required for a serious dental condition, sedation or general anesthesia may be recommended to make delivery of that required treatment possible in a safe and comfortable manner. Without treatment dental diseases can adversely affect, learning, communication, nutrition and other activities necessary for normal growth and development.
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Is there a safer, less risky way to treat a child's teeth?
When a child (or a person of any age with a disability) needs extensive dental treatment, general anesthesia is an accepted standard of care. The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, the American Dental Association, the American Medical Association, and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services support this standard. General anesthesia is also an accepted standard of care for situations involving children who have limited comprehension or children who are extremely uncooperative and require dental care that is technically difficult or sensitive to deliver.
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Is it likely that a child under sedation or anesthesia will suffer serious complications or die while under a pediatric dentist's care?
Dental treatment requiring general anesthesia in a hospital environment poses similar risks to those inherent in any surgical procedure for children. The mortality rate for children undergoing general surgery procedures is one in 250,000.
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How can parents be sure their child is safe in a dental office?
Parents should ask the dentist about his/her training, medications to be used, and monitoring and emergency procedures. If questions are not answered to a parents' satisfaction, parents should seek a second opinion.To avoid risks of dental surgery for your child, make sure your child won't need it. The earlier your child sees a pediatric dentist, the better your chances of preventing dental problems. Pediatric dentists recommend first dental visit no later than the child's first birthday in order to prevent serious oral conditions that may require complicated treatment later on.
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PEDIATRIC DENTAL EDUCATION

Part of what sets us apart is our commitment to the education of parents and children who visit our office. Below is important information from the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry to educate you and your child concerning pediatric dental health and procedures. For even more information, visit the AAPD's website.


What is a pediatric dentist?

The pediatric dentist is the specialist who is dedicated to the oral health of children from infancy through the teenage years. The very young, pre-teens, and teenagers all need different approaches in dealing with their behavior, guiding their dental growth and development, and helping them avoid future dental problems. The pediatric dentist is best qualified to meet these needs. Pediatric dentists have had special training, they spend two additional years in training after they graduate from dental school, acquiring their certification in pediatric dentistry. During that time, they study the development of the human mouth from infancy to adolescence and they also learn about behavioral and social aspects of childhood development.

They are trained and qualified to treat special need patients who may have emotional, physical or mental handicaps. People with significant medical, physical or mental disabilities often present unique challenges to dentists and pediatric dentists are specially trained in techniques that ensure excellent care for these patients. Because of their specialized training and commitment to comprehensive oral health, many parents wisely choose a pediatric dentist to treat their children.
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What should I use to clean my baby's teeth?
A toothbrush will remove plaque bacteria that can lead to decay. Any soft-bristled toothbrush with a small head, preferably one designed specifically for infants, should be used at least once a day at bedtime.
More: Dental Care For Your Baby
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When should I take my child to the dentist for the first check-up?
In order to prevent dental problems, your child should see a pediatric dentist when the first tooth appears, or no later than his/her first birthday.
More: Dental Care For Your Baby

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What is the difference between a pediatric dentist and a family dentist?
Pediatric dentists are the pediatricians of dentistry. A pediatric dentist has two to three years specialty training following dental school and limits his/her practice to treating children only. Pediatric dentists are primary and specialty oral care providers for infants and children through adolescence, including those with special health needs. More: The Pediatric Dentist
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Are baby teeth really that important to my child?
Primary, or "baby," teeth are important for many reasons. Not only do they help children speak clearly and chew naturally, they also aid in forming a path that permanent teeth can follow when they are ready to erupt.
More: The Pediatric Dentist
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What should I do if my child has a toothache?
First, rinse the irritated area with warm salt water and place a cold compress on the face if it is swollen. Give the child acetaminophen for any pain, rather than placing aspirin on the teeth or gums. Finally, see a dentist as soon as possible. More: Emergency Dental Care
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Are thumbsucking and pacifier habits harmful for a child's teeth?
Thumb and pacifier sucking habits will generally only become a problem if they go on for a very long period of time. Most children stop these habits on their own, but if they are still sucking their thumbs or fingers past the age of three, a mouth appliance may be recommended by your pediatric dentist. www.myspecialshirt.com
More: Thumb, Finger and Pacifier Habits

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How can I prevent decay caused by nursing? Avoid nursing children to sleep or putting anything other than water in their bed-time bottle. Also, learn the proper way to brush and floss your child's teeth. Take your child to a pediatric dentist regularly to have his/her teeth and gums checked. The first dental visit should be scheduled by your child's first birthday. More: Dental Care For Your Baby
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How often does my child need to see the pediatric dentist?
A check-up every six months is recommended in order prevent cavities and other dental problems. However, your pediatric dentist can tell you when and how often your child should visit based on their personal oral health. More: Regular Dental Visits
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Toothpaste: when should we begin using it and how much should we use?
Fluoridated toothpaste should be introduced when a child is 2-3 years of age. Prior to that, parents should clean the child's teeth with water and a soft-bristled toothbrush. When toothpaste is used after age 2-3, parents should supervise brushing and make sure the child uses no more than a pea-sized amount on the brush. Children should spit out and not swallow excess toothpaste after brushing. More: Enamel Fluorosis
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How do I make my child's diet safe for his teeth?
Make sure your child has a balanced diet, including one serving each of: fruits and vegetables, breads and cereals, milk and dairy products, and meat fish and eggs. Limiting the servings of sugars and starches will also aid in protecting your child's teeth from decay. You can also ask your pediatric dentist to help you select foods that protect your children's teeth. More: Diet and Dental Health
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How do dental sealants work?
Sealants work by filling in the crevasses on the chewing surfaces of the teeth. This shuts out food particles that could get caught in the teeth, causing cavities. The application is fast and comfortable and can effectively protect teeth for many years.
More: Sealants

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How do I know if my child is getting enough fluoride?
Have your pediatric dentist evaluate the fluoride level of your child's primary source of drinking water. If your child is not getting enough fluoride internally through water (especially if the fluoride level is deficient or if your child drinks bottled water without fluoride), then your pediatric dentist may prescribe fluoride supplements.
More: Enamel Fluorosis

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What can I do to protect my child's teeth during sporting events?
Soft plastic mouthguards can be used to protect a child's teeth, lips, cheeks and gums from sport related injuries. A custom-fitted mouthguard developed by a pediatric dentist will protect your child from injuries to the teeth, face and even provide protection from severe injuries to the head. More: Mouth Protectors
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What should I do if my child falls and knocks out a permanent tooth?
The most important thing to do is to remain calm. Then find the tooth. Hold it by the crown rather than the root and try to reinsert it in the socket. If that is not possible, put the tooth in a glass of milk and take your child and the glass immediately to the pediatric dentist. More: Emergency Dental Care
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How safe are dental X-rays?
There is very little risk in dental X-rays. Pediatric dentists are especially careful to limit the amount of radiation to which children are exposed. Lead aprons and high-speed film are used to ensure safety and minimize the amount of radiation.
More: X-Ray Use and Safety

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How can parents help prevent tooth decay?
Parents should take their children to the dentist regularly, beginning with the eruption of the first tooth. Then, the dentist can recommend a specific program of brushing, flossing, and other treatments for parents to supervise and teach to their children. These home treatments, when added to regular dental visits and a balanced diet, will help give your child a lifetime of healthy habits.
More: Preventive Dentistry

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