What’s the difference between a pediatric dentist and a regular family dentist?

Pediatric dentists are the pediatricians of dentistry and have undergone extra dental training specifically focused on treating children. A pediatric dentist has two to three years specialty training following dental school and limits their practice to treating children only. Pediatric dentists are primary and specialty oral care providers for infants and children through adolescence, including those with special health needs.

When should I make my child’s first dental appointment?

In order to prevent dental problems, your child should see a pediatric dentist when the first tooth appears, or no later than his/her first birthday. Find out more about our Infant Dental Care services here.

Is sucking a thumb or pacifier bad for my child’s teeth?

Thumb and pacifier sucking habits will generally only become a problem if they go on for a very long period of time. Usually children grow out of it before it becomes a problem. But if they are still sucking their thumbs or fingers past the age of three, please visit Clover Kids Dentistry for advice.

Are baby teeth really that important?

Primary, or “baby,” teeth are very important for many reasons. Not only do they help children speak clearly and chew naturally, they also aid in forming a path that permanent teeth can follow when they are ready to erupt. For example, even though the last primary teeth erupt by 23–31 months of age, these primary molars do not fall out until 10–12 years old. These primary teeth need to be kept healthy and cavity-free to prevent any issues in growth, development, nutrition, and well-being.

My child has a toothache. What should I do?

First, rinse the irritated area with warm salt water and place a cold compress on the face if it is swollen. Give the child over the counter pain medication like acetaminophen (e.g., Children’s Tylenol) for any pain. Please book an emergency appointment at Clover Kids Dentistry.

How can I ensure my child’s diet doesn’t harm their teeth?

Nutrition is one of Dr. Betty’s areas of interest and expertise, so she’ll be happy to discuss the kind of diet that will best look after your child’s teeth. Of course, a balanced diet and limiting the number of times a day they eat sugary foods is key to protecting their oral health. Make sure your child has a balanced diet that includes plenty of fruits and vegetables and to only drink water in between meals. Limiting the servings of sugars and starches will also aid in protecting your child’s teeth from decay. Dr. Betty can help you select foods that protect your children’s teeth.

How can I protect my child’s teeth when they’re playing sports?

The dental safety of sports teams is one of Dr. Betty’s areas of focus. She can provide individuals or entire teams with safety mouth guards that can protect football, hockey, and soccer-playing kids. Learn more about Clover Kids Dentistry’s mouth guard services here. Soft plastic mouthguards can be used to protect a child’s teeth, lips, cheeks and gums from sport related injuries. A custom-fitted mouthguard developed by a pediatric dentist will protect your child from injuries to the teeth, face and even provide protection from severe injuries to the head.

My child’s tooth has been knocked out. What should I do?

Try to stay calm, and then focus your attention on finding the tooth. Clean it and hold the tooth by the crown, not the root, and try to re-insert it into the socket. If that is not possible, put the tooth in a glass of milk and take your child and the glass immediately to Clover Kids Dentistry.

Are dental x-rays safe?

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 digital x-rays are used to ensure safety and minimize the amount of radiation. For comparison of everyday radiation to dental x-rays, please click here. If any questions you have aren’t covered here, please call (720) 805-0707 or contact Clover Kids Dentistry using our quick contact form.

How often does my child have to see the pediatric dentist?

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

Should I be using toothpaste with fluoride? My child doesn’t spit yet!

Starting at birth, clean your child’s gums with a soft infant toothbrush or cloth and water. Parents should use a tiny smear (size of a rice grain) of fluoride toothpaste to brush baby teeth twice daily as soon as they erupt and a soft, age-appropriate sized toothbrush. Once children are 3 to 6 years old, then the amount should be increased to a pea-size dollop and perform or assist your child’s toothbrushing. Remember that young children do not have the ability to brush their teeth effectively. It is advised for caregivers to continually assist the children with toothbrushing to ensure it is done properly. Dr. Betty and her team can show parents and caregivers how to properly set up effective toothbrushing especially for the younger children.

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