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Preventing Pediatric Tooth Loss From Decay

dental treament
A child's teeth are just as important as an adult's. At first glance, a baby tooth may seem insignificant. After all, the tooth is not permanent. 
However, a baby tooth holds the position for the adult tooth that will eventually replace it. As a result, if a baby tooth is lost before it is naturally shed, the space for an erupting adult tooth may be inadequate. 
Since the baby teeth serve as placeholders, a gap left by a baby tooth that is extracted early or lost due to decay or trauma may leave enough room for the teeth in a little one's mouth to shift. As the teeth move into the space left by a lost baby tooth, they can interfere with the proper emergence of an underlying adult tooth, resulting in a dental misalignment.
Although you may not be able to prevent every fall that could result in the early loss of a baby tooth, you and your child's dentist can take measures to prevent pediatric tooth loss from decay. Here are a few of those measures.

Encourage Good Oral Hygiene at Home

Good oral hygiene is your child's first line of defense against dental decay. Brushing and flossing remove plaque that leads to the demineralization of the teeth. 
Plaque is a sticky mixture of food particles and oral microbes. The stickiness makes it easy for the substance to coat your little one's teeth and gums. 
As the microbes in the plaque feed on the bits of food left in your child's oral cavity after snacks and meals, they release acid that dissolves the youngster's tooth enamel to cause decay. Brushing and flossing remove the plaque and dilute bacterial acids to protect your little one's teeth. 
Have your child brush twice a day for at least two minutes per session. In addition, they should floss once daily.
If your child has not learned to brush or floss properly on their own, assist with their technique until they become more proficient. In addition, model the proper technique by brushing and flossing in front of them.

Ask the Dentist About Dental Sealants

A dental sealant is simply a coating of plastic that the dentist applies to the teeth to create a barrier between the tooth surfaces and harmful substances, such as plaque. A sealant is applied as a liquid and allowed to harden. The application is simple and painless. 
Most sealants are placed on the chewing surfaces of the back teeth, where plaque and debris may accumulate to incite decay. The chewing surfaces of your child's molars are deeply grooved and can trap food particles as the little one chews. 
Sealants fill in the grooves of the teeth to minimize the amount of debris that settles there. In addition, the sealant coatings prevent oral acids from making contact with the protected surfaces. 

Use Fluoride to Help Prevent Cavities

Fluoride can help protect your child's teeth from decay by remineralizing the tooth material. As bacterial acids dissolve the minerals of your little one's tooth enamel, fluoride draws the minerals back to the teeth and combines with them. The tooth material that is formed by the combination of fluoride and minerals is more acid-resistant than your child's original tooth material. 
To ensure that your child's teeth are exposed to fluoride, offer the youngster fluoridated water, choose a quality fluoride toothpaste, and ask the dentist about a fluoride treatment. Your child's dentist can apply a concentrated fluoride product to the little one's teeth during a routine appointment. 
To learn more ways to protect your child's teeth, contact Bay Pediatric Dentistry to schedule a consultation.