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Dental Emergencies in Children

June 22nd, 2017

Dental emergencies are bound to come up when you have young children. Dr. Varble, Dr. Applebaum, Dr. Dill and Dr. Wong and our team want to you to be prepared in case you run into a difficult situation. Problems can vary, from minor gum irritation to knocked-out teeth. Take a look at the different possibilities and how you can handle them.

Teething

Depending on the age of your child, there are common things to watch for when it comes to his or her teeth. Starting from a young age, your son or daughter may experience teething pain. This starts at about four months and can last up to three years.

Teething may cause your little one to become irritable and more prone to drooling due to tender gums. This is very common in young children who are teething, and can be alleviated by giving them a cold teething ring or by rubbing their gums with your finger.

Teething pain is as normal as your child’s first set of teeth falling out. On the other hand, if a baby tooth is knocked out in a forceful accident, make sure you bring him or her into our Creve Coeur, MO and St. Charles, MO office to check that other damage hasn’t occurred in the mouth. On occasion, permanent teeth may grow in before baby teeth have fallen out. This may not cause any discomfort, but Dr. Varble, Dr. Applebaum, Dr. Dill and Dr. Wong should make sure the teeth are growing in properly. Catching teeth that are coming in incorrectly can prevent issues from arising in adulthood.

Gum Issues

If you’ve noticed your child’s gums bleeding often, this could result from a number of things. Bleeding gums may be an early sign of periodontal disease, which is caused by poor oral hygiene when it appears in children. Excessive gum bleeding can also occur when children brush their teeth too hard, or suffer an injury to their gum tissue.

If bleeding is continuous, rinse your child’s mouth with warm salt water and apply light pressure to the area. If you become concerned about the amount of blood, contact our Creve Coeur, MO and St. Charles, MO office and we will schedule an appointment for your youngster as soon as possible.

Depending on what type of dental issue your child is experiencing, you should make sure to treat it quickly and properly. If you have questions or concerns about what you can do to help your son or daughter develop better oral hygiene habits, ask Dr. Varble, Dr. Applebaum, Dr. Dill and Dr. Wong for tips during your next appointment.

Don’t forget: As a parent, you can provide the best education to your children on the importance of proper oral hygiene by setting a good example. 

Halitosis in Children: Causes and treatment

June 15th, 2017

Halitosis is the scientific name for bad breath. It is one of the most common oral concerns, and it affects a large percentage of the population, including children. Having bad breath can be embarrassing and a nuisance. When considering what to do about halitosis, the team at SmileKidz highlights that you need to focus on the cause, rather than just masking the problem.

Children commonly have bad breath because of an upper respiratory infection. This includes a common cold, postnasal drip, or allergies. When this is the case, treatment may be complicated if one or more of these issues is chronic.

Another cause of halitosis in children is a condition with their teeth or gums. Just as in adults, gum disease has a distinctive malodor. The quality of brushing and flossing in children directly influences the presence of gum disease. If there is a large untreated cavity, there will be a strong smell causing bad breath. Both of these issues need professional attention, including a visit to the dentist.

Tonsillitis can also cause halitosis in children. It happens because of a constricted airway, resulting in mouth breathing. Mouth breathing is a concern because of how much it dries the tissue in the mouth. This makes any bacterial infection in the mouth worse and causes an increased potency within the bacteria in the mouth.

Treatment of halitosis is as varied as the causes listed above. Beware of ingredients in products that mask bad breath. Sucking on a mint on a regular basis will cause more harm than good because of potential decay. Chew sugarless gum and mints.

If you have any other questions, feel free to call us at SmileKidz or ask Dr. Varble, Dr. Applebaum, Dr. Dill and Dr. Wong during your next appointment!

Oral Health Concerns for Infants

June 8th, 2017

Because babies’ teeth don’t appear until around six to eight months of age, it’s a natural misconception that they don’t need dental care. But the steps you take as the parent of an infant can help your baby maintain good oral health and develop healthy dental habits in the future.

It’s easy to take care of a baby’s teeth and gums, especially when oral hygiene for your infant becomes part of the normal daily routine. Learn more about how you can promote good dental health for your baby with these tips and considerations.

Taking Care of Baby’s Oral Hygiene

  • Dental Hygiene for Birth to Six Months. Cleaning your infant’s gums is as important as cleaning teeth will be later. Hold your baby in your arms, and with a clean, moistened washcloth wrapped around your index finger, gently massage his or her gums.
  • Dental Hygiene for Six to 12 Months. After teeth begin to appear, it’s time to switch to a soft, children’s toothbrush for teeth cleaning. New research has shown that fluoride toothpaste is safe and recommended for use once your baby’s first tooth arrives. Gently brush your baby’s teeth after each feeding, in the morning, and before bedtime, just as you did before teeth appeared.
  • Good Bedtime Habits. One of the most important things you can do to protect your infant from tooth decay is to avoid the habit of putting baby to bed with a bottle. Use other soothing bedtime activities, such as rocking and lullabies, to help your baby drift off to sleep.
  • A Note about Dental Decay. Many people are unaware that dental decay is transmissible. Avoid placing your baby’s bottle, sippy cup, or pacifier in your own mouth to test the temperature. Likewise, don’t share utensils with your baby.

Partner With Your Dentist

Your baby should receive his or her first dental health checkup by the age of six months. Even though your infant may not have teeth yet, Dr. Varble, Dr. Applebaum, Dr. Dill and Dr. Wong can assess the risk your baby might face for oral diseases that affect hard or soft tissues. Dr. Varble, Dr. Applebaum, Dr. Dill and Dr. Wong can also provide you with instructions for infant oral hygiene, and explain what steps to add as your baby grows and develops.

SmileKidz is your partner for good oral health, and we’re here to make caring for your baby’s dental hygiene and health easier and more enjoyable for you.

Tips to Help You Beat the Heat This Summer

June 1st, 2017

The dog days of summer are upon us, and with the temperatures soaring, our team at SmileKidz wants you to be extra careful about sun safety when you’re out and about. Check out this incredibly helpful article on the Ten Summer Safety Tips for Kids, courtesy of Discovery.

Dr. Varble, Dr. Applebaum, Dr. Dill and Dr. Wong and our team also encourage you to always have a bottle of water handy when heading out into the sun.

We hope you’re having a great summer! Let us know what you're up to below or on our Facebook page!