At Cherry Bay Dental, Dr. Pfefferle takes being your Traverse City family dentist very seriously, and her team strives to provide the highest quality of care for you and your family. Through experience, we find that creating a trusting environment, coupled with educating both parents and children on healthy oral habits, are the best ways to keep children motivated and happy at their dental visits. By educating and empowering our patients to make healthy decisions, regardless of how old they are, we can help them maintain healthy teeth for a lifetime. This is the power of family dentistry – the habits that you establish in your home now will impact your children for the rest of their life.
At what age does your office start seeing children?
Did you know the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends your child be seen by a dental professional within 6 months of eruption of the first tooth, or at the age of one, whichever comes first? It may seem early, but it helps the child to become aware of their dental home environment at an early age and helps them feel more comfortable each time they visit. Furthermore, our office can address any concerns you as a parent may have, and allows us to give you some practical tools to help keep your child’s mouth healthy.
What does your practice provide for me and my child?
As a family dentist, part of our job is to inform you and your children as to what food and drinks are necessary to keep their teeth healthy. For example, they should drink plenty of water and eat a diet that contains lean protein, nuts, dairy, and vegetables. Milk is another drink that is great for growing children, however, because there are still some sugars in milk, it should only be consumed at mealtime. Things to avoid are sugary beverages like soda and juice, and snacking should be kept to a minimum.
Soda is an especially terrible beverage because of its acidic nature, which erodes the enamel on our teeth. Water is at a neutral pH, 7, whereas battery acid is at a pH of 0; however, many sodas and juices range in the pH of 2-3. Our enamel begins to dissolve when anything below a 5.5 pH level comes in contact with the teeth. With that in mind, we warn children to stay away from these sugary, acidic drinks. Drinking water and milk, while simple, can make the difference between a life of strong, healthy teeth, or a life full of brittle, decayed and damaged ones.
If your child is still drinking from a bottle, we cannot stress enough how important it is to never put the child to bed with anything in his or her bottle other than water. Anything else will put your children’s teeth at risk of decay.
Part of our children’s dental services includes cleaning their teeth on a regular basis. We recommend that children have their teeth cleaned twice a year so that we can remove the plaque and bacteria that has built up on them. Even if your child brushes and flosses every day, there are still some areas in their mouth that are difficult for them to reach. As a family dentist, we can use dental tools to reach these places and prevent cavities in the process. These appointments can be completed fairly quickly and comfortably so that your child can actually enjoy receiving dental care.
As a family dentist, part of our responsibility is to detect and treat any decay we see quickly. If your child happens to have a cavity, it is important that it is fixed quickly. We can provide white fillings that blend in to the surrounding tooth. In addition to fixing cavities, we can also fix teeth that may have been chipped while playing on the playground, when eating, wrestling with friends or playing sports. Our children’s dentistry services include replacing the missing chipped portion with a white dental bonding, a comfortable option for children that can restore their appearance and functionality.
We can provide your child with dental sealants to help prevent cavities. A sealant helps protect the chewing surface of the tooth from cavities by filling in the tiny grooves where food collects, which is commonly a difficult for your child to completely clean with their toothbrush. With this protective coating, it is more difficult for food and plaque to gather here and is easier for your child to clean these areas, resulting in less cavities.
To learn more about our services as a family dentist in Traverse City, call and schedule an appointment.
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