Sporting Smiles
A Great Dentist

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): Pediatric Dental Care

How can we help you?

When it comes to your child's health, being engaged matters. We are here to answer your questions and help you feel confident in the decisions you make. 

We've collected some of the questions we hear most often here at Sporting Smiles. If your question isn't on this list or you need more information, please don't hesitate to call our office. 

Pediatric Dental Care

  • When it comes to infants, avoid putting them to bed with a bottle. It’s also beneficial to try to keep shared utensils or toys away from them, so they don’t get additional germs in their mouth.
  • It is important to establish a healthy oral hygiene routine as early as infants have their first tooth come in. Parents can begin brushing at least once a day at bedtime and as children become old enough to brush, parents can create a routine and make it fun!
  • Children and adults should brush their teeth at least twice per day and for at least two minutes each time. Do not forget to brush your tongue as well. In addition to brushing you also need to floss at least once per day.
  • Visit to your dentist’s office at least every 6 months for a check up and cleaning. This will help ensure a healthy mouth, as your dentist will be able to discover any issues that may arise.
  • See an orthodontist as recommended by your dentist or if you feel you have issues that may warrant a consultation with one. Such issues as bite misalignment, braces, and teeth straightening are best handled by an orthodontist, who is a trained specialist in these areas.
  • Always use a mouth guard when playing sports. This simple little device, which can be picked up at a sporting good’s store, can save you a great deal of pain and money later!
  • Replace your toothbrush regularly, which is every two to three months or as the bristles become frayed.
  • Keep drinks in check! Sugar drinks should be avoided or kept to a minimum, as well as highly acidic drinks (e.g., citrus sodas and sports drinks, etc.), which can eat away at and erode the tooth enamel.

Sealants work by filling in the grooves on the chewing surfaces of the teeth. This prevents food particles from getting caught in the grooves and causing cavities. The application is fast and comfortable and can effectively protect teeth for many years.

At Sporting Smiles, we recommend sealing all permanent molars with deep grooves once they are fully erupted. If a child is very high risk for developing cavities, we may also recommend sealing baby teeth. Each child’s individual needs are taken into account when deciding on a plan for treatment. The sealant material used at Sporting Smiles is completely BPA free.

Have your pediatric dentist evaluate the fluoride level of your child’s primary source of drinking water (this may be from home or school). If your child is not getting enough fluoride internally through water (especially if the fluoride level is deficient or your child drinks bottled water without fluoride), then your pediatric dentist or pediatrician may prescribe fluoride supplements.

A routine check-up every six months is recommended in order to prevent cavities and other dental problems from developing. However, your pediatric dentist can tell you when and how often your child should visit based on their personal oral health.

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.

At Sporting Smiles, we feel parental presence is very important. However, we also encourage older children to develop a strong one-on-one relationship with the dental team. We find this develops confidence and encourages positive behavior and attitude toward future dental visits.

You can explain to your child that the dentist wants to be a friend and help care for his or her teeth.

At the first visit, explain to your child that the dentist will count their teeth, clean them with a special tickling toothbrush, and take some pictures. Avoid using terms such as needles, shots, pain, or hurt – this may never have entered your child’s mind as a possibility! Instead, reassure your child that the dentist is friendly, helpful and kind.

The sooner the better!

Starting at birth, clean your child’s gums with a soft infant toothbrush or cloth and water. As soon as the teeth begin to appear, start brushing twice daily using fluoridated toothpaste and a soft, age-appropriate sized toothbrush.

Use a “smear” of toothpaste to brush the teeth of a child less than 2 years of age. For the 2-5 year old, dispense a “pea-size” amount of toothpaste and perform or assist your child’s toothbrushing. Remember that young children do not have the manual dexterity to brush their own teeth effectively. Children should spit out and not swallow excess toothpaste after brushing.

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