The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) recommends you find your child’s “Dental Home” by age one or when the first tooth emerges, whichever occurs first. It has been shown that establishing your child’s Dental Home provides the opportunity to implement preventive dental health habits that keep a child free from dental/oral disease. At Gulfshore Pediatric Dentistry we agree, and we focus on dental services like prevention and treatment to help maintain your child’s healthy smile. We are also here in cases of dental emergencies or if your child requires sedation due to anxiety or other issues.The goal at Gulfshore Pediatric Dentistry is to educate children on how to care for their oral health in a fun and safe environment. From our exciting office designs to our communication style, our main concern is what is best for your child.
There are actually specific bacteria that cause cavities. This bacteria can be transferred from person to person when sharing saliva, so we recommend your child not eat or drink after anyone. Cavity-causing bacteria love to eat sugar and then they produce acid, which causes holes or cavities in the teeth. Cavities can then lead to pain, missed school, and malnutrition among other things if left untreated.
Cavities are the number one childhood disease in the United States. Therefore, we feel it is most important to teach and practice prevention. The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) recommends your child see the dentist when the first baby tooth erupts into the mouth or by age one, whatever comes first. Although this tends to be a quick visit it is important to review with you prevention, introduce your child to the dentist, rule out pathology and make sure nothing in your child’s mouth needs to be addressed immediately. Adopting healthy oral hygiene habits as early as possible lends to long-term good oral health and a more positive experience at the dental office. We recommend your child visit the pediatric dentist twice a year for regular cleanings, x-rays if prescribed, fluoride treatments, and comprehensive dental exams. Around the age of six when your child’s permanent molars come into the mouth, we will recommend dental sealants to help protect the chewing surfaces of the permanent molars.
At home we recommend you brush your child’s teeth twice a day with fluoride toothpaste. If your child is under the age of three we recommend using a tiny amount of toothpaste the size of a grain of rice. Ages 3-6 years old, if your child practices spitting and does not swallow the toothpaste, we recommend using a pea-size amount of toothpaste when brushing. Fluoride is found in nature and has been proven to help prevent cavities. Floss daily any teeth that are touching. Also, at home minimize or eliminate access to crackers, chips, candy, soda, sports drinks, juice, and dried fruits. If your child takes medication for any reason (including asthma inhalers) please brush or rinse with water after administering the medication.
Cavities are the number one childhood disease in the United States. At your child’s cleaning and exam appointment, you will be provided a detailed plan if treatment is needed. In pediatric dentistry we have two sets of teeth to take care of; we not only fix cavities but also take into account the long-term growth and development of your child. X-rays coupled with the visual exam are used in combination to diagnose, rule out pathology and create a specialized treatment plan for each patient. We use digital technology and physical shielding aprons with thyroid collars to minimize any unnecessary exposure to dental x-rays.
Fillings: a material used to fill or restore missing tooth structure after a cavity is removed. We use amalgam (silver), composite (white), and resin-modified glass ionomer (releases fluoride) fillings.
As pediatric dental specialists, we have the necessary tools to give your child the best dental experience while providing high-quality care. Whether your child is anxious, scared, has special needs, requires extensive treatment, or had a previous bad experience, we offer different options to safely complete treatment.
Nitrous oxide/oxygen is a blend of two gases, oxygen, and nitrous oxide. It is used as an anti-anxiety and analgesic. Nitrous oxide/oxygen is given through a nasal hood, which is placed over the child’s nose. If your child is breathing through their nose the nitrous oxide/oxygen can help them to relax but will not put them to sleep. The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recognizes nitrous oxide as very safe. It is quickly eliminated from the body and your child remains fully conscious and keeps all natural reflexes.
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Oral Conscious Sedation is recommended for apprehensive children, young children, and children with special needs. It is used to calm your child and to reduce the anxiety or discomfort associated with dental treatments. Your child may be quite drowsy, but will not fall asleep and will remain conscious for the entire procedure.
There are a variety of different medications, which can be used for conscious sedation. A common medication is Versed (midazolam.) The doctor will prescribe and administer in the office the medication best suited for your child’s overall health and dental treatment recommendations. We will be happy to answer any questions you might have concerning the specific drugs we plan to give to your child.
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After the sedation appointment:
IV Sedation is recommended for patients that are extremely anxious or apprehensive, children in need of full mouth rehabilitation, very young children, and children with special needs when conscious sedation will not work. Our goal is to complete your child’s dental work safely and provide the most pleasant dental experience for your child. IV sedation allows us to complete all of your child’s treatment needs while your child is safely and comfortably asleep. We work with an amazing group of pediatric physician anesthesiologists, all of whom have extensive experience in caring for children. Please visit their website at www.pediatricsedation.com.