Preparing for Your First Dentist Visit
If you are the parent of a young child, you may be gearing up for his or her first dentist visit. The Academy of General Dentistry advocates taking children to the dentist within six months of their first tooth erupting, or around one year old. Here’s how to prepare yourself, your child, and the dentist for your first visit, as well as what to expect when you arrive.
How to Prepare for Your First Dentist Visit
Start by preparing your child. If possible, schedule a morning appointment so your child is fresh and alert. If you’re seeing a new dentist with your preschooler or elementary-age child, explain what it’s like to visit the dentist. The goal is to convey information and build excitement.
Then, prepare yourself for your child’s first dentist visit. If you personally struggle with dental anxiety, do your best not to convey any discomfort to your child. Your job is to serve as moral support so your child is more likely to feel comfortable visiting the dentist twice a year into adulthood.
Don’t forget to prepare the dentist to see your child as well. You may be asked to provide your child’s medical history, so contact his or her pediatrician for the information you need. If your child has stubborn, frantic, or fearful traits, tell your dentist this so the necessary precautions can be put in place.
What to Expect at Your Child’s First Dentist Visit
The first visit is intended to help your child become acquainted with the dentist. The appointment may last 30 to 45 minutes and may include examining your child’s teeth, jaws, bite, and gum health. If necessary, the dentist may perform a gentle teeth cleaning. Depending on your child’s age and comfort level, it may be possible to perform this step while he or she sits on your lap.
The dentist may also offer advice about caring for your child’s teeth at home. You can ask for a demonstration of how to brush and floss your child’s teeth to ensure you’re doing it properly. You may also receive advice in regards to limiting your child’s time with a bottle, avoiding food that causes tooth decay, and restricting milk and juice intake before and during naptime.
As with adults, children should see the dentist every six months. Your dentist may recommend more frequent visits if it becomes necessary to monitor and treat a developing problem.
Visit a Family Dentist in Hazlet
At Glenwood Premier Dental, we strive to make your first visit with us a comfortable one. Whether your child is now old enough to visit our office, or you’re transferring to a new family dentist in Hazlet, we can meet your needs. To learn more about us, or to schedule an appointment for you or your child, please contact us at (732) 264-4477.
Periodontal Therapy and Maintenance
If you have been diagnosed with periodontal disease, your gums may be red, swollen and receding. They may also be full of pus, bleed easily when you brush and floss, and cause persistent bad breath. Without treatment, you could be at risk for tooth loss and associated health complications, including diabetes, stroke, heart disease, bacterial pneumonia, and issues during pregnancy.
The first stage of periodontal disease is gingivitis, at which point your symptoms are relatively mild. Routine cleanings and improved oral hygiene at home may reverse gingivitis. Once the disease progresses to periodontitis, you may need to begin periodontal therapy. Here’s what this entails.
The American Academy of Periodontology recommends pursuing the least invasive, most cost-effective treatment for periodontal disease. This is often accomplished with root planing and scaling, which are non-surgical treatments that may restore gum health without surgery.
Scaling is when plaque, tartar, and toxins are removed from above and below the gum line. Root planing is the process of smoothing out rough spots on exposed tooth roots. These treatments help infected gum tissue to heal and discourage plaque from forming so the pockets around your teeth can shrink.
Followed by root planing and scaling, your dentist may recommend additional therapies, such as taking antibiotics, using medicated mouth rinses, and switching to an electric toothbrush. These measures help control the infection and promote healing.
However, if the pockets fail to heal after performing multiple root planing and scaling treatments, your dentist may recommend periodontal surgery to reduce pocket depths. You may receive a referral to a periodontist, a gum and supporting bone specialist who would perform your surgery.
Non-surgical periodontal therapy is effective for the majority of patients. However, most people with periodontitis will have this condition for the rest of their lives. Ongoing maintenance is required to sustain healthy gums and prevent flare-ups.
Fortunately, periodontal maintenance isn’t difficult to follow. First, your dentist will advise you to brush and floss daily using recommended techniques. This removes plaque and prevents it from hardening into tartar along the gum line, which can cause your infection to flare up.
Then, you will probably need professional maintenance cleanings four times a year. At these appointments, your dentist checks the pocket depths around your gums and performs a deep cleaning. If a flare-up is detected, root planing and scaling can bring it back under control.
Treat and Maintain Periodontal Disease at Glenwood Premier Dental
Our Hazlet dentist is pleased to provide periodontal therapy and maintenance to our patients. We can help improve the health of your gums and preserve your beautiful smile for a lifetime! If you notice signs of periodontal disease, visit our dentist as soon as possible to begin the necessary treatment. The sooner you act, the more likely you are to avoid the need for surgery.
If you have any questions about periodontal disease, or you’re ready to schedule an appointment with us, please contact our Hazlet dentist office at (732) 264-4477.
Getting Your Smile Ready for Back to School
As summer winds down and you start thinking about back to school season, you probably have a lot on your do-to list—registering your child for classes, shopping for school supplies and new clothes, and scheduling a tour of your child’s new school are just the tip of the iceberg. In all the hustle and bustle, don’t forget to make oral health a priority. Here’s how to get your kid’s smile ready for back to school.
Buy a New Toothbrush
If the bristles of your toothbrush are frayed, they can’t do their job properly. Make sure everyone in your family replaces their toothbrush every three months. If you notice the bristles fraying sooner than this, don’t hesitate to replace your toothbrush sooner.
When shopping for replacements, look for soft-bristled toothbrushes to prevent wearing down your tooth enamel or irritating your gums. If it’s in the budget, consider upgrading to an electric toothbrush for a deeper clean every time you brush.
Reassess Your Oral Care Routine
Are you taking the best possible care of your teeth? Good oral hygiene involves the following:
- Brush for two minutes morning and night.
- Reach all the surfaces of your teeth when you brush.
- Floss gently between each tooth once a day to remove plaque from between your teeth and stimulate your gums.
- Remember to floss behind your back molars, too.
- Rinse with mouthwash or use a water flosser if desired.
To make oral care fun for kids, try playing music, using a sticker calendar, or buying a character toothbrush.
Plan Healthy Lunches and After-School Snacks
The food you eat has a significant impact on your oral health. Crunchy fruits, vegetables, and nuts are like natural toothbrushes, scrubbing away plaque as you chew. Then, low-fat cheese and milk contain calcium to promote strong teeth and neutralize the acids in your mouth. Finally, water rinses away food particles and discourages bad breath. These are far better options than starchy crackers and chips, chewy candy and granola bars, or sugary juices and sodas.
Wear a Mouthguard
If your child has signed up to play football, hockey, wrestling, or another contact sport, make sure to have him or her fitted with a protective mouthguard. This simple device can help prevent painful injuries such as chipped or cracked teeth, knocked-out teeth, and bit lips.
Schedule a Dentist Appointment
Start the school year right with a trip to the dentist! A professional cleaning will help your child smile with confidence for school pictures. Other preventative measures such as dental sealants and fluoride treatments are effective ways of stopping cavities before they start. Then, a dental exam can catch problems in their early stages so treatment can begin before they get any worse.
Our dentist is Hazlet is ready to help you and your child get your smiles ready for back to school! If you have any questions, or you’re ready to schedule an appointment, please contact Glenwood Premier Dental at (732) 264-4477 today.
Common Symptoms and Causes of Gingivitis
When you think about maintaining a healthy smile, you probably picture straight, white teeth. However, the gums surrounding your teeth are just as important. If you don’t take proper care of them, you could develop gingivitis. This is the first stage of gum disease, also known as periodontal disease. Learn the symptoms and causes of gingivitis and how you can avoid developing this gum problem.
Symptoms of Gingivitis
Healthy gums are pale pink, feel firm to the touch, and fit tightly around the teeth. You might have gingivitis if you notice any of these symptoms:
- Swollen gums
- Dark red gums
- Bleeding when you brush or floss
- Lingering bad breath
- Receding gums or pockets around the teeth
- Gums that feel sore or tender
We recommend seeing a dentist as soon as you notice symptoms of gingivitis. The faster you seek care, the better chances you have of reversing the damage and preventing it from progressing to periodontitis. Once the disease reaches this stage, it cannot be undone, only maintained.
What Causes Gingivitis?
Poor oral hygiene is the primary reason behind gingivitis. Here’s what happens when you don’t take good care of your teeth and gums:
- Plaque forms on your teeth. This clear, sticky film is left behind when starches and sugars in your food interact with the bacteria in your mouth.
- Plaque hardens into tartar. If not removed daily, plaque hardens along the gum line into a substance called tartar, or calculus. This attracts and shields bacteria, which quickly multiply and irritate your gums. While plaque can be swept away by brushing and flossing, tartar removal requires professional cleaning.
- Your gums become inflamed. The longer plaque and tartar linger, the more irritation they cause. Over time, your gums become swollen and infected. You now have gingivitis, and your condition is likely to progress if left untreated.
How to Prevent Gingivitis
Periodontal disease is the most common cause of tooth loss. It has even been linked to other health problems, such as diabetes, stroke, heart disease, bacterial pneumonia, and complications during pregnancy. Keep your gums healthy and prevent gingivitis with these tips:
- Practice good oral hygiene. This includes brushing your teeth with fluoride toothpaste for two minutes twice a day and flossing at least once a day.
- Visit the dentist regularly. Professional cleanings help keep gum inflammation at bay, and checkups reveal any problems you didn’t know about.
- Maintain good health practices. Eating healthy food and managing your blood sugar if you have diabetes is important for promoting gum health.
Treat Gingivitis at Our Dentist Office in Hazlet
If you notice symptoms of gingivitis, don’t ignore them! Prompt treatment is vital to get your gums healthy again and prevent the disease from progressing. Glenwood Premier Dental treats gingivitis and periodontal disease with effective therapies and oral hygiene tips. For answers to your remaining questions, or to schedule your next appointment, please contact our Hazlet dentist office at (732) 264-4477 today.