Back to School Dental Check-ups – Pediatric Dentistry

Summertime after the fourth of July goes by in a blink and before most know it – it’s time for Back to School. As you and your child prepare with new backpacks, new learning materials, it’s also a great time to bring your child to the dentist. Schedules are busy during the school year, and time spent learning in the classroom or virtual classroom is a priority. To prevent missed school days bring them in August!

Children should visit the dentist twice a year for their biannual cleaning, check-up and fluoride varnish application (Visit our article on Fluoride for more information). Radiographs are not necessary at every visit and are evaluated on a per patient basis. The dentist will ensure your child’s comfort and will be happy to answer any questions.

Early childhood caries can be seen in toddlers and preschool children. This is often a result of feeding the child with a baby bottle throughout the day for prolonged periods of time. It is best give a child a bottle during meal time, and afterwards clean your child’s teeth with a soft toothbrush.

Elementary school children continue to need to be monitored during brushing. It is often recommended to help the child brush, to ensure all teeth are adequately cleaned for the appropriate amount of time. It is recommended for parents to help children floss.

By the age of six many children will have their front permanent teeth. It is recommended for active children who play contact sports to wear mouth guards when playing to protect and prevent orofacial trauma. “The majority of sport-related dental and orofacial injuries affect the upper lip, maxilla, and maxillary incisors, with 50 to 90 percent of dental injuries involving the maxillary incisors.” (https://www.aapd.org/research/oral-health-policies--recommendations/prevention-of-sports-related-orofacial-injuries/) Mouthguards can be purchased over the counter and must be cleaned routinely.

Dental pain can often distract children from learning and paying attention in the classroom.

What can you do at home before a dental visit? Encourage a positive environment in connection with the dentist, read children’s books about favorite characters visiting the dentist. Bring children with their siblings so that older children can model great behavior for younger siblings.

Make an appointment today at Metropolitan Dental Care and bring your child in before school starts to ensure a happy and healthy smile!

Author
Dr. Leelah Jaberi, DDS

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