Pediatric dentistry is a branch of science that examines and provides solutions to oral and dental health problems in the period from birth to the end of adolescence. It is defined as pedodontics in dentistry. With the emergence of children’s milk teeth, the dental system goes through different periods until the permanent teeth appear.
Treatment of problems in children’s oral and dental health
Treatment of decays in primary(deciduous) and permanent teeth, placing crowns in cases of excessive material loss, Root canal treatment in primary and permanent teeth, Tooth extraction, Placeholder application to prevent loss of space due to early primary tooth extraction, Treatment of fractures caused by trauma such as crash and accidents, Elimination of discoloration on teeth.
Avoiding dental and oral problems with preventive and non-operative treatments
Oral hygiene training, Informing and training parents, Information about healthy diet, Fluoride varnish application, Fissure sealant applications, Protective and stopping orthodontic treatments, Application of night plaques used to prevent teeth grinding and clenching (bruxism), Application of dental protectors used during sports matche
Your child should be under the control of the dentist when the first teeth start to emerge in order to prevent problems in their teeth, jaw and facial development and to be detected early. Meeting the dentist before your child’s teeth develop decay brings many advantages. As simple and short term preventive methods, get information about correct brushing and nutrition from your dentist will prevent the dental problems before they occur. As the child gets used to going to the dentist, there will be no dentist fear. In addition, dental problems that may occur in your child are detected by your dentist at an early stage that you cannot detect. In this way, delay in the treatment to be applied is prevented. Generally, 6-month checkups are recommended, but your dentist will determine how often your visits should take into account your child’s oral and dental health.
DO NOT FORGET THE FIRST TOOTH, FIRST EXAMINATION!
In children, the front teeth are exposed to trauma in cases such as falls and collisions. In cases where the front teeth (or back teeth) are broken, if there is no sign of a serious problem with the general health of the child, you should immediately contact the dentist. The sooner the intervention time is in the teeth damaged as a result of trauma, the higher the success of the treatment.
If you can find the broken piece of tooth, put it in clean water and take it to the dentist, if possible. In cases where the broken piece is suitable, your dentist can stick this piece back to the tooth. Adhering the broken piece back to the tooth provides more aesthetic results. However, in cases where the broken piece cannot be found or it cannot be bonded due to multiple fractures, the desired aesthetics and function can be restored with composite resin fillings suitable for tooth color.
The points to be considered in nutrition in childhood as follows:
Sugary, sticky chocolate-like or acidic foods and beverages should be reduced as much as possible. However, since these foods cannot be completely restricted, it is important to give them after the main meals and to brush the teeth right after. However, it should not be forgotten that not all food that causes the decays does not taste SWEET. Each food with high carbohydrate content causes the formation of caries.
Processed foods rich in starch; Prepackaged foods such as crackers, chips, cornflakes, non-whole grain breads, processed dairy products (fruit yoghurt and milks) can cause the decays.
Tooth decay is a disease caused by bacteria living in the oral environment. These bacteria produces acid by using food residues accumulated on tooth surface. These acids also cause tooth material loss, called tooth decay, by melting the tooth surface. Caries is one of the most common diseases in the world and progresses rapidly. 90% of 6-year-old children have caries. If tooth decay is not treated, it causes infection in the teeth and surrounding tissues and has negative effects on general human health. It should not be forgotten; caries is a preventable dental problem. The way to become a person
with a healthy mouth and teeth is start to have since childhood a good oral hygenie habit. Here are 6 magic formulas for the protection of oral and dental health during childhood;
Generally, it is not possible to do dental treatment by persuasion in children under 5 years old, while in some children, regardless of age, the dentist fear cannot be prevented despite all kinds of professional approaches. In these cases, forcibly intervening in the dental caries of the child causes the child’s fear of a dentist to reach a level that cannot be overcome. In addition, the lack of treatment causes the progress of caries and serious damage to the oral and
dental health of the child. For this reason, we prefer sedation and general anesthesia methods for children who cannot help them overcome their fear during 2-3 trial appointments or who cannot be treated because of their age. Another patient group in which sedation and general anesthesia are frequently preferred are mentally disabled people. In general, poor oral care of these people causes caries and gum disorders. By ignoring the problems instead of treating them, the tooth loss of these people increases and their life quality decreases seriously due to pain in the teeth, infection and nutritional problems.
In addition to all these patient groups, these methods are preferred in adult patients who cannot overcome the the dentist phobia or who cannot have their dental treatment under normal conditions due to serious systemic diseases such as high blood pressure.
It is appropriate to consume foods such as eggs, meat, cheese, milk, fresh vegetables and fruits for snacks. It is ideal to brush the teeth after eating
something everytime. You can ask your daycare center or babysitter to help and lead your child to take care of brushing. However, if you do not have the
opportunity to brush, at least you can advise your child to rinse his mouth with water and chew sugar-free gum. When your child wants to have a snack, offer him / her healthy, non-starch, nonacidic nutritious options;
1. FISSURE SEALANT
Fissure sealants is a kind of fluid filling material that covers the chewing surfaces of teeth. This material, which is applied to the tooth without abrasion on the tooth, covers the chewing surface of the tooth and prevents the food accumulation which causes caries in this area. Especially newly erupted permanent teeth are more sensitive to decay since their mineralization is not complete. Therefore, it should be applied especially to these teeth.
2. FLUORIDE VARNISH
Fluorine is an element found in air, water and rocks. It has a protective effect on the teeth and increases the resistance of the tooth to decay, so it is put into toothpaste in small amounts. Professional applications where the amount of fluorine and its anti-caries effect is higher are applied by your dentist in the form of fluoride varnish or fluoride gel at intervals of 3-6-12 months. However, your dentist should decide on the frequency of these applications and which type of application to choose by preparing a special program for your child.
Parents could clean the baby’s first teeth with a clean gauze pad. During this period, baby toothbrushes that the mother can put on her finger to clean baby teeth are also available on the market. After the baby has more teeth, brushing should be continued by switching to brushes suitable for the age. Care should be taken that the bristles of the brush are not too hard or soft and that the brushing process is not too harsh. The use of paste containing fluoride before the age of 3 is not recommended due to the risk of swallowing the baby. However, there are pastes suitable for babies that do not contain fluoride,
do not foam and contain completely digestible enzymes. After the age of 3, fluoride-containing child paste can be used. It is important to use only child paste up to the age of 12. Since the mechanical cleaning of the teeth is important, using more paste does not mean a better cleaning. In addition, since the paste will foam with saliva, it is not necessary to wet the paste on the brush under water.
If the dislocated tooth is milk tooth due to trauma, no intervention is made, but it is necessary to apply to the dentist urgently to evaluate the possible damage to the surrounding tissues and to prevent the risk of infection. If the removed tooth is a permanent tooth; It should be washed under clean running water without touching its root. However, while washing, absolutely no operation such as brushing or soaping should be done that will damage the living tissues of the root. If it can be placed in its place, placing the tooth where it comes out gives the best result. However, if the parent cannot do this, they should put the tooth in plain milk and contact your dentist immediately. Since the time is very important in repositioning the dislocated teeth, applying to the dentist as soon as possible increases the success of the treatment. Your dentist will evaluate the condition of the tooth, ensure that the tooth is re-attached with the fixation method called splinting, and will make the necessary treatment planning according to the life stage of the tooth.
Since the motor functions of children are not fully developed until the age of 9, they should not be expected to brush their teeth effectively alone. Just as a child before the age of 9 cannot take a bath on his own, he cannot brush his teeth. Of course, the child should be allowed to brush his / her own first, but then definitely the parents should do the actual effective brushing. Only toothbrush movement is not enough for effective brushing. Ask your dentist to show you the correct brushing technique to for yourself and your child. People gain their habits at an early age. In order to give your child the habit of brushing teeth, you should set an example for them as brushing your own teeth.
The most common orthodontic treatment (braces treatment) requirement depends on early primary teeth loss. When deciduous teeth are lost early, neighboring teeth slide into the extraction space. As a result of the narrowing of the extraction gap, the permanent tooth that will emerge in this area in the future remains buried or the teeth become crowded. In order to prevent these crowding, the place of the milk tooth lost early should be preserved for the permanent tooth coming after. For this purpose, it is aimed to prevent crowding that will cause orthodontic treatment in the future by using appliances, which are movable and fixed types and called as PLACE HOLDER.
In some cases, if the number of milk teeth lost number is high, these placeholders can also be prepared as child prosthesis(place holder with teeth), in
order to protect the chewing function of the child.
These methods require dentists and anesthesiologists to work as a team. It is very important that the team that will make this treatment method is
expert and experienced in their field. Pedodontists (pediatric oral and dental health specialists) train specially in applying dental treatment with these
methods in children and mentally disabled people. In addition, it is very important that all the necessary equipment is ready in the environment
where the process will be performed. It is also very important to examine the general health condition of the patient well and to perform the
necessary blood tests before general anesthesia.
Children may have some bad habits that can cause permanent or temporary damage to their teeth and oral soft tissues. Often parents either do not notice or ignore these harmful habits. However, these habits cause orthodontic problems that can lead to bigger problems in the future. These bad habits negatively affect the development of the face, teeth and jaws. These habits may have started from infancy and continue throughout life. In order to prevent these behaviors that cause orthodontic disorders, it is absolutely necessary to get help from preventive orthodontics. Habits are conditioned behaviors that always happen in the same way. These are divided into good and bad habits. It is a good habit if it does not have any physical, psychological and social harm. The opposite is called bad habits. The type, severity and duration of bad habits are very important. A dentist can recognize these bad habits at an early stage and stop them before irreversible damage occurs. Bad and harmful mouth habits that require protective and preventive treatment can be listed as follows;
Parents play an important role during the period of quitting bad habits that harm teeth in children. Parents should take their child to the dentist twice a year and have their teeth checked. Orthodontic problems, if any, will be detected early with regular checks. When the dentist sees a harmful habit that needs to be treated, he or she can refer you to the orthodontist and the pedagogue to be treated in collaboration.
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