Pediatric Dental Exam

Clinical Exam

The first part of a typical dental exam consists of observing the general aspect of the patient’s face and neck. Any unusual signs, such as bumps or swelling can point to an unwanted dental condition. Your dentist will check the kid’s mouth: bite, jaws, gums, tongue, cheeks and lips. Based on the aspect of the patient’s teeth, the dentist will decide if the child’s denture could use sealants or not.

An exam of the mouth usually means looking for cavities and other problems. This is a very gentle procedure. Your dentist is going to see what the child’s brushing and flossing technique is: if these actions are not performed properly, the child must learn to correct them.

X-rays for Children

Many health issues inside the mouth are not visible just by looking. X-rays can help identifying all sorts of problems for both baby teeth and permanent teeth. This way, your dentist can watch over their growth and discover cavities that cannot be seen otherwise, as well as look for gum and jaw bone problems. However, X-rays are not always necessary: you don’t have to go for a scan unless your dentist recommends it.

Pediatric Office Cleaning

Plaque must be removed from the patient’s teeth with a rotating toothbrush. Sometimes, your dentist can choose to floss to make sure there is no plaque left between the child’s teeth. A fluoride foam, solution or paint may be applied if your dentist considers your child’s teeth could use it to harden and prevent cavities.

Oral Hygiene Instructions for Children

Daily visits to the dental office for teeth cleaning are obviously not an option: in order to have healthy teeth, children must learn how to perform oral hygiene activities at home. Flossing helps removing plaque and food jammed between the child’s teeth. Your dentist can explain how to do this properly, show you how to wind the floss around your fingers and how to pass it between your teeth in all directions, up and down and sideways until every food particle is removed.

Brushing should be done afterward, using a toothbrush that is soft enough and especially designed for children. While brushing, the ideal angle to your teeth is 45°. The quantity of toothpaste should be small to minimize accidental swelling. The right move implies rotating the toothbrush across the teeth; under the gums, this should be done back and forward; never forget the top surfaces, even if your teeth have sealants; you also have to brush your teeth on the inside with the same circular motion. These may require some training.

Following Visits

A child could use at least a couple of visits to the dentist every year. These check-ups must be regular. If you have doubts regarding the time you should return to the dental office, feel free to ask your dentist.

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