Pediatric dentistry (Pedodontics) is the branch of dentistry that prevents and treats the odontostomatological pathologies of the patient in developmental age. The focus is on the prevention of tooth destruction caused by caries. This is achieved through education on the use of adequate oral hygiene maneuvers, advice on proper nutrition, topical application of fluoride and dental sealing.
When should you visit the dentist for the first time?
The first visit should be performed around the age of 2-3, so that the child is instructed to perform simple brushing maneuvers. Meanwhile, at this age, treatments for oral hygiene and periodic checks by the dentist can begin. The purpose of the first visit at an early age is to get the child used to the office and to the dentist. In this way, the child adapts and becomes familiar with the environment and dental procedures, in such a way as to make this experience as peaceful as possible for him / her.
Why are milk teeth so important?
The formation of deciduous teeth already takes place in the fetus, around the third month of pregnancy. The first teeth to erupt are the lower central incisors in the fourth month of life, followed by the upper central incisors. The eruption of the other teeth of the deciduous series ends around 3 years of age, but their position and order varies.
The exchange or the beginning of the eruption of permanent teeth begins around the age of 6, with the eruption of the first permanent molars and the lower central incisors. This process continues until the age of 21 with the eruption of third molars (wisdom teeth). The permanent dentition of an adult patient consists of 28 teeth and 32 dental elements if the four wisdom teeth are included.
The presence of deciduous teeth is of great importance because it allows the child to perform various functions such as feeding, laughing and talking. Milk teeth also serve as space maintainers for permanent teeth, promoting harmonious growth of the upper and lower jaws. Decay of deciduous teeth similar to caries of permanent teeth can cause pain, inflammatory lesions and bad breath. Deciduous teeth treatment procedures can be performed with simple and painless techniques for the child.
Milk teeth perform a number of important functions:
– They allow the child to follow a healthy diet, consuming both strong and soft foods.
-Indispensable for the mechanical shredding of food, helping the digestion of the latter
– They serve to preserve the space necessary for the eruption of permanent teeth in their correct positions
– They allow the normal development of the maxillary, lower and upper bone bases
-They play an important role in the speech, vocal articulation and self-esteem of the child
Our goal is to reduce the risk of probable oral diseases and increase the longevity of a healthy and beautiful smile.
Proper nutrition and healthy teeth
Teeth, bones and gum tissues require a healthy and well balanced diet. In general, foods with a high sugar content and sugary drinks can cause caries lesions. For this reason, children should consume healthy foods such as vegetables, fruit, yogurt and low-fat cheese.
Prevention of bottle-feeding syndrome
The likelihood of decaying teeth in childhood can be minimized or avoided completely by not allowing the baby to fall asleep while breastfeeding or keeping a pacifier during the night. For children who need to use a pacifier to sleep peacefully, we must give them a pacifier full of water.
What is tooth sealing?
Teeth sealing is a recommended procedure to prevent tooth decay from forming. This preventive method consists in the application of a thin resinous fluid layer, especially on permanent molars that have just erupted and are uncovered by the gum. The occlusal part of these teeth is made up of grooves and fissures which favor the development of carious processes. This procedure is pain-free and is performed without the application of local anesthesia.
What is fluoroprophylaxis?
Fluoroprophylaxis consists in the superficial application of the fluoride gel at periodic intervals to improve and strengthen the crystalline structure of the dental enamel. The improvement of the enamel structure makes the tooth more resistant to the acidic environment caused by bacteria in the oral cavity. Particular attention should be paid to the amount of fluoride gel applied or during the ingestion of significant quantities of toothpaste with fluoride content, since an excessive amount can lead to the onset of Fluorosis (chalky white pigmentation on the surface of the teeth).