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Fluoride Varnish or Sealants
Little girl wearing glasses with arms crossed smiling
Fluoride is a natural mineral that has been proven to strengthen teeth and prevent the incidence of tooth decay. The American Dental Association recommends fluoride treatment for children as soon as teeth emerge. This simple preventive measure of applying a fluoride varnish to a child's first teeth can strengthen teeth at risk for decay and create a tooth surface that is more resistant to decay.

Applying a fluoride varnish protects a child's primary (first) teeth from decay. Fluoride is applied twice a year from ages one to six or seven when the child gets their permanent teeth. Fluoride varnish works by repairing gaps in the tooth enamel, protecting teeth from plaque forming bacteria that likes to colonize in small pits and gaps.

Fluoride is easily applied to teeth. It dries almost immediately upon contact with clean dry teeth and will not be removed by saliva. The procedure is quick, painless, and often included in dental insurance coverage, but you will want to check with your provider to be certain.

Once children have their permanent teeth, dental sealants may be applied for the protection of the back teeth or molars. Sealants are a thin plastic coating painted on the chewing surfaces of teeth (usually the back teeth) to prevent tooth decay. Most children get their first molars between the ages of five and seven and their second (permanent) molars around the ages of 11-14 which is an appropriate time to apply sealants.

Using both fluoride varnishes on your child's primary teeth and sealants on the chewing surfaces of your child's permanent teeth are effective ways to help prevent or slow down tooth decay.
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Take Care of your Baby's Teeth
Baby Boy crawling  toddler
Babies are born with no teeth, but that does not mean that they do not need proper dental care. Every baby is born with their first 20 teeth, they just are not showing through their gums yet. By the time they reach an average of 6 months old, the teeth start to poke through. Even before those teeth poke through, however, your baby can suffer from tooth decay. Starting from day one, you should practice proper dental hygiene with your baby by washing the teeth with a soft, clean washcloth daily. Once your baby has teeth showing, brush twice a day with a soft toothbrush and warm water. After the age of 2, it is safe to start using a tiny amount of a fluoride toothpaste.

Understanding Wisdom Teeth
Wisdom teeth typically come in between the ages of 17-21. Since these are the last of the adult teeth that you will form, it is common for your mouth to be too crowded or for the wisdom teeth themselves to be in an odd position that makes it difficult for them to erupt. In these cases, it might be necessary to have your wisdom teeth extracted. Other situations that require extraction include any type of disease or infection, pain, disease in the gums and chronic pain. It is important to talk to your dentist today about your wisdom teeth and whether they need extraction.

Children Dentistry Community Page

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Mike Regan DMD - Community | | 503-654-8283
6969 S.E. Lake Road, Milwaukie, OR 97267



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Mike Regan DMD - Community, 6969 S.E. Lake Road, Milwaukie, OR 97267 • 503-654-8283 • • 7/18/2024 • Page Keywords: pediatric dentist Milwaukie OR •