Dental questions for your pediatric dentist
Send your child back to school with a healthy smile! Scheduling a dental exam before a new school year begins can help spot any issues, such as tooth decay, in the early stages and may prevent problems from becoming worse. That way, your child won’t have to miss school once classes start. To help your child maintain good oral health habits and get the most out of their dental checkup, consider bringing this list of questions to the appointment, along with anything else you’d like to discuss with your child’s dentist.
- How is my child’s overall dental health? During your exam, the dentist will examine your child’s teeth and gums, and check to ensure that teeth are lining up correctly. The exam will also include a professional teeth cleaning. This can help remove excess bacteria that can cause cavities.
- Does my child need X-rays? While your child likely won’t need an X-ray during every checkup, your dentist may want them periodically to ensure that the roots are healthy and to see how teeth are developing. X-rays can also help the dentist spot decay between your child’s teeth and treat it before it becomes more of a health issue.
- Does my child need sealants? Sealants provide a thin protective coating that can help keep cavities from forming, especially in areas that are hard to reach with a toothbrush.
- Does my child need fluoride treatments? Like sealants, fluoride treatments are often considered one of the most effective ways to prevent tooth decay and help strengthen developing teeth. Professional dental fluoride treatments are usually applied as a gel or foam and can be scheduled during a routine exam.
- Should my child wear a mouthguard while playing sports? Most dentists recommend a mouthguard, especially for kids who play sports year-round. If your child already wears a mouthguard, bring it to the appointment so the dentist can check to see that it still fits properly. If your child has had a growth spurt or lost teeth, the mouthguard may need to be replaced.
- How can I help improve my child’s dental health? Make sure the dentist is aware of any health issues your child may be experiencing. In addition, be sure you follow up on any treatment the dentist recommends. It’s also a good idea to include the dentist’s contact information on your child’s school and activity medical forms in case of an emergency.
Tips to keep teeth healthy all year long
Practicing good oral hygiene at home can help your kids develop lifelong healthy dental habits. Encourage these healthy routines at home:
- Brush and floss teeth daily
- Change your child’s toothbrush at least once every three months and after they’ve been sick with a cold or the flu
- Encourage eating healthy meals and snacks, and limiting sugary snacks and drinks
- Visit a dentist twice a year for a routine exam and cleaning
Remember that the CareCredit credit card provides a convenient way to pay for dental exams, treatments and products. Use the Acceptance Locator or download the CareCredit Mobile App to find a nearby dental provider who accepts CareCredit.