Posts for: June, 2015
When Entertainment Tonight host Nancy O’Dell set out to teach her young daughter Ashby how to brush her teeth, she knew the surest path to success would be to make it fun for the toddler.
“The best thing with kids is you have to make everything a game,” Nancy recently said in an interview with Dear Doctor TV. She bought Ashby a timer in the shape of a tooth that ticks for two minutes — the recommended amount of time that should be spent on brushing — and the little girl loved it. “She thought that was super fun, that she would turn the timer on and she would brush her teeth for that long,” Nancy said.
Ashby was also treated to a shopping trip for oral-hygiene supplies with Mom. “She got to go with me and choose the toothpaste that she wanted,” Nancy recalled. “They had some SpongeBob toothpaste that she really liked, so we made it into a fun activity.”
Seems like this savvy mom is on to something! Just because good oral hygiene is a must for your child’s health and dental development, that doesn’t mean it has to feel like a chore. Equally important to making oral-hygiene instruction fun is that it start as early as possible. It’s best to begin cleaning your child’s teeth as soon as they start to appear in infancy. Use a small, soft-bristled, child-sized brush or a clean, damp washcloth and just a thin smear of fluoride toothpaste, about the size of a grain of rice.
Once your child is old enough to hold the toothbrush and understand what the goal is, you can let him or her have a turn at brushing; but make sure you also take your turn, so that every tooth gets brushed — front, back and all chewing surfaces. After your child turns 3 and is capable of spitting out the toothpaste, you can increase the toothpaste amount to the size of a pea. Kids can usually take over the task of brushing by themselves around age 6, but may still need help with flossing.
Another great way to teach your children the best oral-hygiene practices is to model them yourself. If you brush and floss every day, and have regular cleanings and exams at the dental office, your child will come to understand what a normal, healthy and important routine this is. Ashby will certainly get this message from her mom.
“I’m very adamant about seeing the dentist regularly,” Nancy O’Dell said in her Dear Doctor interview. “I make sure that I go when I’m supposed to go.”
It’s no wonder that Nancy has such a beautiful, healthy-looking smile. And from the looks of things, her daughter is on track to have one, too. We would like to see every child get off to an equally good start!
If you have questions about your child’s oral health, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can learn more by reading the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Taking the Stress Out of Dentistry for Kids” and “Top 10 Oral Health Tips for Children.”
Over the years, dental hygiene instruments have evolved into devices that are more comfortable and more effective. Removing plaque and tartar buildup from the teeth and below the gum line is one of the most important ways of preventing decay and gum disease. To remove this buildup, your Des Plaines family dentist now offers the procedure with an Ultra Sonic Scaler.
What is an Ultra Sonic Scaler?
An Ultra Sonic Scaler is a power-driven device that uses vibrations to remove plaque and tartar buildup from the surface of teeth. These high power vibrations can also create shockwaves that help to break up bacteria and biofilm on the teeth and gums.
Benefits of Ultra Sonic Scaling
Using this mechanical device, your Des Plaines dentist can effectively clean and descale the tooth and root surfaces with less potential damage to the surrounding tissue than using a traditional hand scaler. An ultrasonic scaler may be significantly more effective than hand scaling if you have deep periodontal pockets.
The cool water sprayed on the tip of the ultrasonic device helps to irrigate the cleaning surface, washing away bacteria and debris which can speed healing. An ultra sonic scaler can also make the teeth cleaning process go faster. They require less time than a manual hand scaler.
Will My Dentist Use this Technique?
Ultimately, your Des Plaines dentist may find that a blended approach, using both the manual scaler and the ultrasonic scaler, may be the best approach for your dental cleaning. Depending on your unique dental and health condition, your dentist may recommend against a power scaler. Those with hypersensitive teeth, tooth restorations, or a pacemaker will want to discuss their unique needs with their dentist.
If you’d like more information on ultra sonic scalers, talk to your dentist about the benefits. The dentists and staff at Suburban Family Dental in Des Plaines, IL offer ultra sonic scaling as well as a wide variety of state-of-the-art dental techniques to meet your needs. Schedule an appointment today by calling (847) 640-0778.