Pediatric Dentistry in Garland, TX

Dental Care for Children and Infants

Children's Dentistry - My Family Dentist Garland

Your Child should visit the dentist for the first time around the age of 6 months. A child’s first dental visit is usually quite short and is mostly observational. We sometimes ask parents to sit in the dental chairs and hold their children during the first examination. At My Family Dentist Garland, you are always welcome to be back with your children during their visits.

During the first visit, we will gently examine your child’s teeth and gums. We might take some x-rays in order to reveal any decay or the progress of permanent teeth under the gums. In some cases, we will clean your child’s teeth and apply a topical fluoride to protect against tooth decay. We will work with you to go over practices for cleaning your child’s mouth and to take care of their teeth using fluoride products.

Call 972-696-9273 today to schedule your child’s appointment.

What should I tell my child about their first dental visit?

We are asked this question very often, and always suggest a few things. Generally, you should prepare your child in the same way that you would before their first haircut or trip to the shoe store. You might be surprised by how comfortable your children are during their first visit.

Here are some “First Visit” tips:

  • Come by before your appointment for a “preview” of the office.
  • Read books with them about the dentist’s office.
  • Make sure they know what the dentist will be doing during their first visit.
  • Use positive language when describing the dentist.

During your first visit, Dr. Heaton will:

  • Examine your mouth, teeth and gums.
  • Evaluate symptoms of early issues
  • Check to see if cleaning is necessary.
  • Teach you about cleaning your child’s teeth and gums.
  • Suggest a schedule for dentistry going forward.

Preventative Care

There are a few things that Dr. Heaton can do to directly address the issue of tooth decay before it happens. At our office, we use the latest in dental sealant technology to protect your child’s teeth and prevent against decay. Dental sealants are super strong plastics which are bonded to chewing surfaces of back teeth and can set the foundation of your child’s oral health.

Cavity Prevention

The majority of cavities are caused by consumption of sugary foods and the absence or lacking of good brushing habits. Cavities can be prevented by limiting the amount of sugary foods that you eat. You can greatly reduce the risk of cavities by reducing the amount of time that sugary residue stays on the teeth.

The reason that sugary foods are directly correlated with cavities is because of the way that your mouth reacts to sugar. Every time someone eats sugar, an acidic substance is created to break down these sugars. For 20 minutes, this reaction takes place and leaves the structure of your mouth susceptible to cavities.

There are other factors which contribute to the susceptibility of someone’s mouth to cavities. Eating a diet high in sugars and other carbohydrates can cause your saliva to thicken, which allows more of the acid to be produced. Thinner saliva washes away food more quickly compared to those who have thicker saliva.

Cavity Prevention Tips

  • Reduce frequency of meals and snacks
  • Brush, floss, and rinse in accordance to our Dental Health Tips
  • Avoid sugary drinks
  • Avoid sticky, sugary foods
  • Make desserts part of your meal as opposed to eating them separately.
  • Choose snacks with high nutrition levels.

The first teeth that start to emerge in your child’s mouth are the two front teeth on the bottom row. This usually occurs when between the ages of 6-8 months. The next series of teeth to start growing are the 4 front teeth on the top row. All remaining teeth appear periodically along the jaw until the child is about 2 ½ years old.

Once a child is 2 ½ years old, your children’s “baby” teeth should be almost completely showing. It is important to care for these teeth even though they are only temporary, and should be “practice” for your children to learn good dental health practices. By the age of 5 or 6, the first permanent teeth begin emerge from the gums after tooth loss. Some teeth might be a few months early or late, but there is no need to worry, as all children are different.

Baby teeth are important because the hold space for permanent teeth and are utilized for the first 5-6 years of your child’s life. This period is the best time to teach your children the correct methods of dental hygiene that they can maintain for a lifetime.

My Family Dentist Garland

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