Pediatric Dentistry

Tooth Pain in Kids: Common Causes and Steps to Take

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Has your baby been drooling excessively lately, putting everything in their mouth and being extra cranky than regular? They are probably getting their first teeth. And with them comes the tooth pain that may make both their life and your life quite miserable for a while. Hang in there, this too shall pass.

 

However, when the pain is not associated with teething and your child is a bit older, then you should schedule an appointment with your St. Louis pediatric dentist.

 

Signs of Tooth Pain in Children

 

If your child isn’t verbalizing yet and you notice that he rubs his lip, cheek or jaw in an insistent way, showing discomfort, then you should try to look inside their mouth and evaluate the situation. If there is tooth decay, you will likely see cracks and spots in the tooth enamel, different color of the tooth or secondary signs of trouble, like bad breath or swollen gums. Make an appointment with your dentist ASAP.

 

If your child is old enough to speak and tell you more about his pain, try to find out a few things that might lead to a correct diagnosis.

 

Did they recently injured themselves? If so, your child might have a bruise, a crack or chip in one of his teeth or cuts and wounds in the soft tissue. Investigate the nature of the pain – if it is sharp or muffled – and determine if it is an emergency or if it can wait until you get an appointment at the dentist’s office.

 

If your child has a fever or if you notice swelling of the face, go to the emergency room, as it may be a serious infection that needs to be treated with antibiotics.

 

How to Treat Your Child’s Tooth Pain Until You Get to the Dentist

 

Tooth pain has been a controversial and dreaded topic throughout medical history, and dentistry has come a long way from the first procedures. However, dental anxiety still exists, and it can be quite serious in young children. That may be the case with your child too, but never postpone a dentist visit unless there is a real, medical reason for it.

 

Call and schedule an appointment at your St. Louis dentist. In the meantime, your dentist may recommend you treat the tooth pain at home with an over the counter painkiller, like ibuprofen. Make sure you give your child the right dose and that you administer it correctly.

 

If you manage to keep the pain under control, wait until you get to the doctor’s office and monitor your child closely to see any sign of development. Hopefully, the dentist visit will solve the problem and lessen the tooth pain in the future.

Pediatric Dentistry

3 Traits to Look for in Your Child’s Pediatric Dentist

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Taking your child to a dentist for the first time is a big decision that will influence their perspective and attitude toward oral health for a long time. So, it is paramount to prepare them beforehand and talk to them a lot about the benefits of getting regular dentist check-ups and treatment.

 

Let’s say you did everything by the book: you have read them stories about going to the dentist, given them examples of people or characters with beautiful smiles. You also practiced going to the dentist through role play. You are both excited about going to a St. Louis pediatric dentist and have your expectations high.

 

Wouldn’t it be immensely frustrating if, after all that, you end up going to the wrong dentist, who doesn’t click with your child and leaves you with a negative experience?

 

That is it is important to choose the right dentist for your child. Knowing what to expect from your child’s visit will help you prepare them better and give them an accurate description of what is going to happen, making them less anxious about the entire experience.

 

Here is what to look for when choosing the right dentist for your child.

 

A Nice, Child-Friendly Dentist’s Office

First of all, a visit to the dentist’s office will allow you to see what your child will experience when first setting foot in this environment. If the cabinet is inviting, clean and friendly, your child will feel more secure. Look around and see how you feel when sitting in the waiting room, looking at the environment and interacting with the staff.

 

Choose a environment that inspires safety and comfort. Many offices that treat children are decorated with lovely cartoons, animals, flowers, bright colors, and so on. They also may have furniture for children and a few toys that will help the time pass when waiting for their turn.

 

Friendly and Helpful Staff and Doctor

Check how your interaction with the staff is. Are they friendly, smiling and helpful? Will they be able to make your child feel secure and excited about what is going to happen? If you feel like the staff is not involved enough or too intimidating, check if it is a general feeling or if it’s coming from a certain person. You can choose to come on a different shift and check how things are then.

 

The Right Equipment for Your Child Treatment

Ask the dentist about their equipment during your initial visit. Is it sized for a child’s mouth? That can greatly influence the level of comfort your child will feel when going through his checkup or procedure.

 

If everything seems ok, take the next step and bring your child for a visit. Make sure you are constantly there for support and observe your child’s reaction.

 

A good pediatric dentist needs to have many qualities in order to make children feel safe and secure when they are at the dentist. If you are looking for a St. Louis pediatric dentist you can trust, give The Dental Anesthesia Center a call today at (314) 862-7844.

Pediatric Dentistry

Sedation Dentistry for Kids: Is It Safe?

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Sedation dentistry is a very effective solution in performing oral health treatments and procedures to patients who are overly anxious about going to the dentist. And it’s generally safe. The doctor calculates with mathematical precision the amount of anesthetic one needs to feel relaxed during the treatment.

 

While for adults sedation is a way of managing their fears, when it comes to kids, this practice may become a necessity, especially when it comes to lengthy procedures. Children simply do not have the self-control and patience needed to sit still for long periods. Not to mention, the instruments and sounds can be so intimidating even to adults. So, doctors use sedation to ensure their safety.

 

Your St. Louis sedation dentist will tell you prior to the treatment that sedatives can have an effect on primary body functions, such as breathing. Parents often worry about what could happen if the effects of the sedatives become uncontrollable.

 

Here’s what you need to know.

 

Risk Factors of Sedation Dentistry for Children

While a lot of people’s fear of the dentist is unfounded, worrying about the possible side effects of sedation is entirely justified, especially when it comes to children. Their airways are smaller than a teenager or an adult’s, increasing the risk of obstruction.

With young children, studies show that they are, indeed, more prone to suffering from dangerous side effects. However, the same studies conclude that adverse events are successfully kept under controlled by the medical staff.

 

Should We Sedate Children During Dental Procedures?

While there are a few risks associated with sedation that parents should be aware of, they are almost always kept in check by the medical staff. When drawing the line, at least statistically, the benefits of sedation dentistry exceed the risks. What a parent should know is that an experienced St. Louis sedation dentist can provide a safe procedure for their young child, with great rates of success.

 

If doubt is still preventing the parent from allowing the child to receive treatment, there are two more things to consider: 1) choosing to have more invasive procedures done at the hospital, and 2) following the protocols for sedation dentistry closely. If parents make sure they understand everything they need to do before and after the sedation, they help keep the risks under control. Choosing doctors with experience and asking them about an emergency plan that covers any possible complication is also very helpful.

 

What’s truly important is that sedation dentistry keeps helping dental professionals treat their youngest patients, with a very low risk of complications. Knowing these risks and being prepared for them allows children to get the important dental treatments they need. To learn more about the benefits of sedation dentistry, feel free to give The Dental Anesthesia Center a call at (314) 862-7844!

Pediatric Dentistry

How to Help Your Child Develop Proper Brushing Technique

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Often, St. Louis parents are so focused on getting their children to establish an oral care routine that they forget about technique. Unfortunately, doing so can lead to dental complications, despite the parents’ best efforts. Below, we explain proper tooth brushing technique in the form of 7 useful tips.

 

Start With the Right Tool

Before learning technique, you should prioritize purchasing the right tools for your children. While most toothbrushes will work fine, you can look for the ADA seal of approval on their packaging to discern which are worth using. Second, choose a head size based on their personal preferences and the shape of their mouths. Generally, young kids like thick handles and small heads, while older children don’t care about handles and like medium or large heads.

 

Note the Number Two

The magic number in oral care is two. Why? Because children need to brush their teeth twice a day and do it for two minutes each time. Now, feel free to push that to three minutes if you want them to do a thorough job, but make sure they always reach the minimum of two. You can use a small hourglass or any other type of timer to do so.

 

Not Too Hard, Not too Soft

Brushing too softly is a common way in which children do not clean correctly. Conversely, some kids get overzealous and brush too hard. The former leads to improper cleaning while the latter can cause gum damage.

 

Use a 45 Degree Angle

Another mistake children often make is using the wrong angle when brushing. What they do is angle their brush around 90 degrees, which feels natural and correct. Unfortunately, doing so leads to a subpar clean and can eventually cause cavities. When instructing your children on how to brush, tell them to use a 45-degree angle instead.

 

Think of Each Tooth Individually

Kids often think of their teeth as a two-part object. In this frame of mind, there is only bottom and top. The better way to think about teeth is as individual objects that each need cleaning. When your kids adopt this mindset, they will take more care in brushing each tooth rather than glossing over them with broad strokes.

 

Don’t Forget the Gums and Tongue

Of course, oral care goes beyond just teeth. You also need to prioritize your children’s gums and tongues. To do so, tell them to brush beyond their teeth and up into their gum areas. Once they are done with teeth and gums, move on to the tongue, which needs cleaning too.

 

Keep Your Brush Clean

Toothbrushes are often breeding grounds for bacteria, which can harm your children. To protect against this danger, keep your children’s brushes upright and separated when they are not in use.

 

If you keep these tips in mind, you can confidently instruct your children on how to clean their teeth properly. Remember to schedule regular dental appointments with your local pediatric dentist to ensure your child’s teeth are cleaned and maintained regularly.

Pediatric Dentistry

5 Pediatric Dental Emergencies – What to Do in Each Case

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One of the most stressful situations parents go through their child having a medical emergency. While most dental issues are not life-threatening, these emergencies happen frequently in the world of oral health. When they do, you should know how to remedy the situation and how quickly you should see your St. Louis Pediatric dentist. Below, we will discuss what you need to know about these 5 common dental emergencies.

Toothache

Though many do not classify toothaches as emergencies, they can cause excruciating pain and have a profound effect on lifestyle. The most common causes of toothaches are fractures, trauma, and decay, but there are a variety of other factors that could be the culprit. No matter what, this ailment requires your attention. The three steps you can take by yourself are washing the mouth out with warm water, checking for sharp pieces of food in the gum, and icing the area. After you stabilize the situation, call your dentist and make an appointment.

Dental Avulsion

This is another name for a person losing their entire tooth. In these cases, your child will likely be bleeding quite a bit and time is precious. What you should do is try to recover the lost tooth, rinse it off, keep it wet during transportation, and find an emergency dentist. Please note that for young children who still have their baby teeth, re-implantation is usually not used. Also, if you cannot recover the tooth, there are many other treatment options to look in to.

Dental Intrusion

Those who experience severe trauma to the head could suffer a dental intrusion, which describes the condition of a tooth being forced into the jawbone. Though this occasionally works itself out, the most prudent choice is seeing an emergency dentist as soon as possible. In the meantime, you may choose to give your child ice and over the counter pain medication.

Tooth Displacement

A displaced tooth is one that stays in its socket but is at an unnatural angle. This issue sometimes heals itself, but you should see a dentist to make sure everything is alright. This likely does not warrant a trip to the emergency dentist, but making an appointment as soon as possible is a smart decision.

Broken Tooth

The fact that broken teeth have so many grades of severity makes it hard to recommend one treatment plan. For this reason, you should always stick to the safer option of seeing an emergency dentist. For cracks, your dentist may just seal the tooth. For more severe issues, they might choose to replace it with a crown. Regardless, your behavior before seeing the dentist will likely be the same: Rinse the mouth with warm water, use a cold compress, and utilize over the counter pain medication.

As a parent, you never want your child to have a medical emergency. Unfortunately, they may happen from time to time. When these events take place, knowing exactly how to treat your child’s ailments will go a long way. Once you do your part, you can leave the rest up to your St. Louis dentist.

 

 

The Dental Anesthesia Center: Sedation and Sleep Dentistry

950 Francis Pl #305

Clayton, MO

63105

(314) 862-7844