Early Dental Care

As your family dentist of choice in and around Lincoln, NE, we at West Gate Dental are happy to provide efficient dental treatments to patients of all ages. We realize that a healthy smile starts as soon as a baby is born, which is why we encourage you to bring your child to our dental practice at a young age. Although many parents are unsure as to when this first dental visit should be, there’s actually a very accepted opinion.

Your Child’s First Visit to the Dentist

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that your child’s first visit to the dentist should be at about the time of his or her first birthday. This visit is crucial because we’ll be able to check for cavities, watch out for any developmental problems, and educate you on the best oral hygiene techniques and regimens. Also, this early visit to our dental practice will help your child become comfortable with going to the family dentist for decades to come.

Your Child’s Teeth

Your child has 20 primary (baby) teeth, all of them typically appearing between the first six and nine months of age. The first to erupt are often the two lower front teeth. These are usually followed by the upper front teeth, the molars, and then the canines. Your baby may experience issues with teething during this process. If so, please let us know so we can help ease your child’s discomfort.

Kids mouth anatomy.

As your child’s teeth develop, you’ll need to begin cleaning them. To do so, you should gently wipe the teeth and gums with a damp washcloth or a water-soaked gauze pad after each feeding. When your child is two years old, you’ll want to transition into utilizing a daily brushing routine. We recommend using a small, soft-bristled toothbrush and just a pea-sized amount of fluoridated toothpaste. You’ll probably need to help your child with this task until he or she reaches the age of six.

The Importance of Primary Teeth

Unfortunately, there are many people that don’t understand the importance of primary teeth. Because these teeth fall out at an early age, they believe that their maintenance isn’t all that important. However, primary teeth actually play a critical role for your child in the following ways:

  • Primary teeth are essentially the guides for the permanent teeth. These teeth will keep the proper spots open for the permanent teeth when they come in. If any of a child’s primary teeth fall out early, the permanent teeth may end up shifting around. This could lead to problems with the alignment of the teeth. Your child’s primary teeth should hopefully fall out naturally when the permanent teeth begin pushing against their roots.

  • Your child’s primary teeth assist with many different important daily activities. Some of the most vital ones include chewing properly and speaking clearly.

  • Your child will develop great dental and oral hygiene habits for his or her permanent teeth by learning to take care of the primary teeth.

Our Lincoln, NE Children’s Dentistry Treatments

At West Gate Dental, we’re able to supply a large offering of dental treatments that will help protect your child’s teeth from decay and other dental problems. Our dental practice offers the following treatments:

Topical Fluoride – This treatment is advantageous because when the fluoride incorporates into the enamel of your child’s teeth, it will make them stronger and much more resistant to decay. Fluoride may exist in toothpaste and most water supplies, but it’s only available in smaller quantities. At our Lincoln, NE dental practice, we’re able to apply a more concentrated level of fluoride on your child’s teeth.

Dental Sealants – Sealants are plastic coatings that are applied onto the chewing surfaces of the back teeth. The reason why sealants are applied there is because chewing surfaces of the back teeth are actually the most vulnerable to tooth decay. These chewing surfaces contain crevices that are perfect environments for food and bacteria to get stuck in and cause decay. Sealants will work by smoothing out these grooves and preventing food from getting trapped in them. Sealants are easy to apply and they’ll provide protection to a patient’s teeth for years to come.

Pulpectomy Treatment – Pulpectomy treatment is vital for saving teeth that are severely decayed, damaged, or injured. Many people think that pulpectomies are only needed for permanent teeth, but they can be used on primary teeth as well. Saving a primary tooth can end up preventing a child from needing orthodontic treatment later on in life.

Bonding – Bonding can repair minor chips and fractures to a patient’s front teeth. These lifelike resins are made of plastic and glass. They’re useful on both primary and permanent teeth.

Orthodontic Concerns

Orthodontic Problems.

By the time your child reaches the age of seven, most orthodontic problems are apparent. This is the time when you should have an orthodontist evaluate your child. Interceptive orthodontic treatment can help direct proper tooth positioning and jaw growth as well. Orthodontic treatment during this time can help simplify – or even eliminate – the need for orthodontics later on in life.

Contact Your Lincoln, NE Dental Practice Today!

If you’re looking for a family dentist in or around Lincoln, NE, we encourage you to give us a call at (402) 475-8710. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We look forward to hearing from you!