MEDICAL SECOND OPINION

Pedodontics (Ages 0-13 Pediatric Dentistry)

Tooth Eruption and Problems

Is late eruption in babies cause for concern?

Eruption of the first teeth generally starts at six months. However, certain factors may cause delays. Delays up to the age of one are acceptable. If no teeth erupted at age 1, the baby should be taken to a dentist for examination.

What symptoms are visible in the gums during eruption?

Distemper, lack of appetite, itchy gums, and increased saliva may occur a day or two before the eruption. The gums where the tooth is about to erupt may be swollen. All of these complaints will cease once the teeth have erupted, and there is no medication to cure all complaints. Creams sold in pharmacies may be used before feeding to comfort the child.

Will the general condition of the child change during eruption?

Previously, a child's problems when they reached eruption age would be tied to tooth eruption. While eruption may have specific effects on the child, conditions such as convulsions, diarrhea, and bronchitis are no longer connected with eruption. All other reasons need to be analyzed to tie irregularities in a child's general condition to the eruption. It is, therefore, essential to consult a pedodontist if such a problem is confronted.

When will the eruption be completed?

The eruption of baby teeth will be completed between 24 and 30 months. Completely erupted milk teeth in children consist of 20 teeth: 10 on the upper jaw and ten on the lower jaw.

When do permanent teeth erupt?

At age six, permanent teeth start erupting from behind the milk teeth. These are in the form of 2 each on the upper and lower jaw on both left and right, four in total. Because they are commonly mistaken for milk teeth, they are often extracted instead of being treated when decayed. However, extraction of these teeth, which are essential in the tooth system, leads to crookedness, whose treatment is complicated. At 7-11, the milk teeth start to wobble, and the permanent teeth emerge from the bottom, replacing them. At the age of 12, the second set of permanent grinders occurs. These, too, do not return the milk teeth.

What happens when a child is born with teeth?

Babies are often born with teeth, or they may erupt immediately after birth. Extraction of these wobbly teeth may be necessary as the baby may swallow or choke on them. They may also irritate the mother's nipples during breastfeeding. In such cases, dentist intervention may be necessary.

Brushing

When should brushing of baby teeth start?

As soon as the first teeth appear in the mouth, they should start to be cleaned. Using a clean cloth or gauze, the teeth should be cleaned by wiping after breakfast and before sleep. Using a toothbrush should begin after the first rear teeth appear.

What is the best method of brushing?

Suggesting and enforcing a brushing method for preschool children is very difficult. The important thing is to make brushing a habit with them. When brushing, children generally brush the surfaces of visible or easily accessible teeth. However, germs accumulate more easily between the teeth and on the chewing surfaces. Therefore, parental supervision is essential before brushing. In school-age children, the toothbrush should be placed on the spot where the teeth and gums meet, at a 45º angle, and then the chewing surfaces of the teeth should be brushed by back-and-forth movements.

Which toothbrush should be preferred for children?

Soft and nylon bristled toothbrushes that fit the size of the child's mouth should be used. Stiff brushes are not advisable as they may erode the teeth. Just as a worn-out broom cannot adequately clean the floors, an old toothbrush cannot clean teeth. As soon as a toothbrush's bristles start to wear out (on average every three months), they must be changed.

Which toothpaste should be used with children, and how much?

Toothpaste is not recommended for babies in their infancy and children up to three. The use of toothpaste should start after the age of three. However, contrary to what is shown in advertisements, the amount applied to a toothbrush should be the size of a pea, not half a finger's length. When the toothpaste stage begins, any fluoride toothpaste on the market is preferred. It is imperative to remember that an effective brushing process is more important than the choice of toothpaste.

How many times a day should a child brush their teeth?

A three-minute brushing session is sufficient, once before breakfast and once before bed. Like many good childhood habits, brushing teeth is also acquired during childhood.

Should milk teeth be treated?

Milk teeth, just like permanent teeth, should be treated. Having them extracted on the basis that "they're going to be replaced, anyway!" is a notion that can lead to several problems. The importance of milk teeth can be emphasized as follows:
Milk teeth play an essential role in growth. Children with toothaches cannot eat properly. Similarly, children with teeth extracted cannot eat and, therefore, cannot grow and develop.

Aside from general body development, milk teeth are also necessary for developing the jaws. Children who have teeth extracted due to cavities or gum problems may see their jaw drop and look older.

Teeth are necessary for talking. Especially during the phase where children learn to speak, the lack of front milk teeth may lead to the letters F, V, S, Z, and T being mispronounced, which may become a lifetime habit.

Every child likes to smile. Healthy teeth are needed for a nice smile.

Looking attractive is a natural need in people of all ages. Children with decayed or missing teeth may think they look ugly, which may, in turn, cause psychological discomfort.
Another function of the milk teeth is to save the place of the permanent teeth emerging from below. Imagine ten children seated next to each other on a couch. When one stands up and leaves, the others reshuffle and fill their space to be more comfortable. If another child tries to sit amongst them, they will have to squeeze together.

Similarly, if a milk tooth is extracted before it is supposed to, the neighboring teeth shift towards the gap. This leaves no room for the tooth emerging from the bottom. This tooth squeezes the others, causing crooked teeth. Therefore, just as with permanent teeth, milk teeth must also be treated!

A Child’s First Visit to the Dentist

When should a child first be taken to the dentist?

The ideal time for this is six months after the first teeth emerge. Problems with a child's teeth may start at a very early age. Obtaining information about the child's feeding, tooth care, and sucking habits may prevent problems from happening before they start.

How should a child and a parent prepare for the first examination?

The best option is to obtain information regarding the procedure before taking a child to the dentist. Contacting a dentist before substantial cavities form and violent pains start will ensure that the treatment goes much more smoothly for both the child and the dentist. However, a child brought to the dentist's office with the preconceived notion that an injection will not be administered will lose all faith in both the parents and the doctor should anesthetics need to be applied. Therefore, correctly informing a child regarding treatment is vital in fighting their fears and re-establishing their trust.

Why do children fear dentists, and what measures can be taken?
If the parents explain to the child that there is nothing to fear in dental treatment, they can quickly be taken to the dentist's office. However, some parents scare children into thinking that dentists are a matter of fear with statements like, "If you don't behave, I will take you to the dentist, and he will pull your tooth out!".

Therefore;
Going to the dentist's office should not carry an element of punishment. On the contrary, an atmosphere where the child enjoys visiting the dentist's office should be created. Another point to be careful about is that a correlation should not be drawn between going to the dentist and the pain the child will be subject to. However, misleading the child with "Your tooth won't hurt at all" will make future treatment more difficult. Good dialogue between the dentist and the child will assist the child in fighting their fears. For this to happen, the parent must allow the child to answer the dentist's questions.

Created at 11.10.2023 03:42
Updated at 22.05.2024 12:20

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