Preventative Dental Care

Dental cleanings & Exams Prevent Future Dental Problems

The American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommend that children have their first dental visit by the time they’re one year old. At this visit, we’ll evaluate your child’s teeth, address any dental concerns that parents might have, and discuss the actions that can be taken to prevent future dental problems.

We’ll also talk about topics such as: teething, brushing needs and habits, use of bottles and sippy cups, thumb sucking and pacifiers, and when to start using fluoridated toothpaste.

Pediatric Preventative Dental Care - boy smiling with an apple

Preventative Dental Care Services in West Jordan, Utah

Dental Cleaning: The cleaning removes plaque and calculus from the child’s teeth. Plaque is formed when food, bacteria, and saliva combine and stick to the teeth. A build of plaque can lead to cavities and gum disease. Removing this plaque makes it possible to see every surface of the tooth in order to determine whether decay is present.

Fluoride Treatments: A fluoride varnish or foam is applied directly to the teeth once all plaque and calculus have been removed. This application of fluoride helps strengthen and harden the enamel, and makes the teeth more resistant to decay.

Digital X-rays: X-rays are generally taken at each visit in order to assist the dentist in making accurate diagnoses. These images are very useful for detecting decay between teeth, which we call “flossing cavities”. Additionally, x-rays assist the dentist in determining how far into the tooth decay has gone.

Dental Exams: An exam is usually completed every six months. At this time, the dentist completes a thorough examination of the patient’s teeth, gums, and bite. The doctor will also look at the x-rays that were taken in order to determine if any additional decay is present. If treatment is required, we’ll also discuss the different options that our office offers in order to make the experience as comfortable as possible for the child.

Dental Sealants: As soon as the permanent molars have erupted, we recommend placing a sealant on each tooth. Sealants are a thin coating that sits in the grooves of the teeth and help prevent the buildup of plaque, which leads to cavities on the chewing surface of the tooth. This procedure is relatively simple, and does not require the mouth to be numb. Though sealants are a great preventative measure, they do not protect the other surfaces of the teeth, so it’s important to brush and visit the dentist regularly.

Space Maintainer: Many times a space maintainer or spacer is placed when a child loses a baby tooth prematurely due to decay or injury. This appliance helps prevent neighboring teeth from drifting into the empty space, which can cause crowding or prevent the eruption of the permanent tooth.