Pediatric Dentistry Frequently asked Questions:

Q: How serious is tooth decay on baby teeth? They are going to lose them anyhow.
A: Tooth decay is the single most common chronic childhood disease.
Millions of school hours are lost each year to dental related disease. When a baby tooth is lost too early, the adjacent teeth shift into that vacant space and block the normal eruption path of the developing permanent tooth. This results in serious orthodontic consequences.

Q: When should I start cleaning my child’s teeth?
A: From healthy baby gums come healthy baby teeth. You need to start providing good oral care for you children right from birth.

Q: How can I care for my baby’s gums?
A: After each feeding, gently wipe you baby’s gums with a clean gauze pad or cloth.

Q: What do I do about my child’s teething?
A: Call your pediatrician if your baby has a fever. Use cool teething ring to soothe tender gums. Many children find “Baby Orajel” quite soothing.

Q: I am worried about my child’s thumb (or pacifier) sucking. When should I attempt to put a stop to it?
A: Ignore until aprox 4 years old. They often lose interest on their own. With pacifiers keep them clean and in good condition, and never use a cord to attach to the baby.

Q: When do the baby teeth start to erupt?
A: The first teeth, which are generally the two lower anterior teeth, usually erupt at six months. Twenty primary teeth should be present by age three.

Q: Is it safe to put my child to sleep with the bottle still in his mouth?
A: You must be very careful to avoid “Nursing bottle caries” (also called “Baby bottle decay”) If you must put your child to bed with a bottle, it should never contain anything but water. Never fill the night bottle with milk or juice.

Q: What do you suggest for oral hygiene items for my child?
A: In choosing a toothbrush, use a size and shape fit for a child. Toothpaste should be pleasant tasting, and made specifically for a child. Only a pea size amount is needed. An electric toothbrush can make brushing fun and more efficient but a manual brush can be just as effective with the parents guiding hand.


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Stephen E. Bloom, D.D.S., Inc.
Ohio Center for Cosmetic Dentistry
Highland Medical Center | 850 Brainard Rd. | Highland Heights, Ohio 44143
Tel: (440) 460-5400 | Fax: (440) 460-5403

In this fast paced world, we frequently make snap judgements. Your smile says so much about you in so little time. Does it project the proper image? Can you benefit from dental implants, porcelain veneers, tooth bleaching, bonding, crowns, or several other esthetic dental procedures? An attractive smile can be your biggest asset. Let it show what a successful person you truly are or hope to be. We have been on the cutting edge of cosmetic dentistry since 1976. Let us help you to benefit from our expertise and vast experience.