Saturday, September 26, 2009

How To Take Care of kids teeth

Young kids with pretty smile! Who doesn't like to see a kid smile? Who doesn't wish to pamper them with all they want….. sweets, candies, chocolates are exactly what make a child happy. Milk teeth, as the 1st set of dentition in a child is called, are rarely considered a cause of worry by parents because they know that sooner or later these teeth would go and be replaced by a 2nd set of teeth….. But its hardly known that despite the fact that milk teeth are replaced by the permanent set of teeth as the child grows, they need an equal amount of care so that they perform their function well as long as they stay and also look good.

Beginning at the very early years of a child, a very common form of tooth decay seen in infants is called "Rampant Caries" or "Nursing Bottle Caries". The terminology may sound complex but the cause is as simple. It is a common practice to have infants sleep or lie down with milk bottles containing sweetened milk in their mouth. The continuous contact or milk forms a layer on the child's teeth, especially during the night time when the saliva production is reduced. This can cause decay of a large number of teeth, sometimes so severe that the entire tooth structure is destroyed within a very short time period. And the parents will never know what happened to their child's perfect teeth!

Many parents tend to neglect decay in the early dentition of a child but if it progresses to very severe limits, it can cause severe dental pathologies as well as infection of the permanent tooth bud forming under the deciduous tooth. Trauma is a very common event in childhood. Kids often fall during play hurting their teeth. Sometimes the front teeth may fracture and the parents shall rush to a dentist, but at other times no apparent fracture may appear or the tooth can appear slightly driven into its sockets as compared to its adjacent tooth. This can be a cause of much more worry than an apparent fracture, for in this case the trauma to the tooth maybe transferred to the permanent tooth bud developing underneath it and produce severe deformity of the developing permanent tooth bud. So a dentist should be referred to after all such injuries to that an appropriate radiograph (dental X-ray) of the region can be taken and the necessary treatment provided.

Most parents worry about a "crooked teeth" phase in their child's life. This is often a transitory developmental stage seen in the mixed dentition period when permanent teeth begin to replace the milk teeth. No orthodontic treatment is needed in most cases but a dentist's advice should be taken. Many of these conditions are self - correcting as the child grows.

A major discrepancy or difference in a child's jaw sizes are signs of early consultation with an orthodontist. Such events occur due to the arrested or decreased growth of one jaw compared to the other. Such conditions are treatable only in the early stages of a child's growth by a treatment modality in orthodontics called as "growth modification" wherein appliances can be used to control and modify the growth of the two jaws relative to one another. This condition if left untreated in upto the pre-adolescent stage, can become a cause for serious worry and may require more severe treatment forms including orthognathic surgery (surgery of the jaws). Hence early intervention is always a preferred option in these cases.

Finally cleaning a child's teeth well is really important. Have the child learn the proper brushing technique by a dentist. For a brief guide, a child upto 7 years of age should hold his arm parallel to the floor and make large circles with the brush outside the mouth. This guides him in controlling the brush movements. Then the child should be asked to form similar smaller circles over his teeth while brushing them. No more than 5 minutes of brushing should be necessary. A parent should always guide children during brushing. Children above 7 years of age can follow the same brushing pattern as adults.

For an infant, as the first teeth begin to erupt, a parent may clean them by applying a small amount of toothpaste over them and wiping off with a towel or atleast with a wet towel alone. Lastly, the diet of a child should be monitored. Some children may not really hog onto sweets and yet have badly decayed teeth while others may be extensive sweet lovers and yet have perfectly healthy teeth. There is an inherent genetic predisposition or risk factor for each individual which affects his susceptibility for dental decay. But we should always take precautions.

All children are precious and so is their good health… and good health includes good dental health as well. We must not forget that teeth form a very vital part of our bodies. They help us in biting, chewing and mastication and give our faces an aesthetic look. So we cannot afford to have these young, pretty children lose out on those perfectly beautiful teeth.

Its time to know and act for a healthy generation!!
Treat your child's teeth well.... don't shut eyes to some good knowledge and some efficient treatment. Get to workright away....

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