August 13, 2020
Summer is coming to an end and fall is just around the corner, which means back-to-school season is here! Between charging up laptops, purchasing school supplies, and preparing for the potential of distance learning, it’s safe to say that your schedule is jam-packed. So, it might be tempting to rush out of your child’s dental appointment as soon as you get the thumbs-up to do so. However, it is important to remember that you play a valuable role in your little one’s oral health. Therefore, make sure to ask your pediatric dentist the below five questions at their next appointment!
#1. Does My Child Need X-Rays Taken?
Although the American Dental Association recommends that your child visits their dentist every six months, it is important to know that each appointment may not look the same. For example, X-rays are often conducted on an as-needed basis instead of bi-yearly. So, don’t hesitate to ask your dental team if they need X-rays taken. After all, they are instrumental in catching tooth decay between their teeth and ensuring the root of each tooth is healthy!
#2. Will My Child Get a Cleaning Today?
Another important question to ask at the beginning of their visit is if they are getting a professional cleaning. This should be a standard part of every routine visit; however, it never hurts to double-check. That way, you can ensure stubborn plaque and tartar are effectively removed to prevent tooth decay.
#3. How Is My Child’s Overall Oral Health?
After the examination, ask your dentist about your child’s overall oral health. Even if they do not have any cavities, your dental team can give you insight into how their teeth are growing in, whether their bite is in good shape, and if any products can take their dental care regimen to the next level. That way, you can stay in front of any potentially painful or costly dental damage.
#4. Can You Check My Child’s Mouthguard?
Did you know that over 5 million teeth are knocked out each year? Fortunately, a custom mouthguard from your child’s dentist can protect your favorite smile from sudden and traumatic dental emergencies that can occur from participation in contact and non-contact sports. To ensure their teeth and gums are getting the maximum level of protection, ask their dentist to check their mouthguard.
#5. What Are Sealants?
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the American Dental Association, cavities are a rampant issue. To protect your child’s teeth from tooth decay, their dentist can place sealants over the chewing surface of their back teeth. This thin, protective coating can prevent cavity-causing bacteria from settling into the crevices of your child’s teeth. Plus, they can prevent existing spots of tooth decay from getting worse!
Amid the hustle and bustle of daily life, it can be tempting to use the time at your child’s dentist appointment to catch-up on emails, create lists, or simply take a break. However, it is important to remember that asking questions at their routine visits can significantly improve their oral health!
About the Author
After completing his undergraduate degree from Saint Louis University, Dr. Marty Killeen attended the University of Nebraska College of Dentistry for his Doctor of Dental Surgery. Since then, Dr. Killeen has attended the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry’s annual meeting each year, become a member of multiple reputable organizations, and helped countless patients achieve optimal oral health and beautiful smiles. If you would like to schedule your child’s back-to-school appointment, don’t hesitate to visit his website or give him a call at 402-420-8020.
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