As specialists in pediatric dentistry, Dr. Tracht and Dr. Briskie -- and their associates and staff --often address parents’ concerns about the oral health of their children. Today, we are sharing information about when to schedule your child’s first dental visit.
We get asked this question a lot. What age is the right age for a child’s first dental checkup? The answer? We recommend a “well-baby” visit by age one, as suggested by the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry. Think, “First birthday, first visit.” We fondly refer to this appointment as our Terrific Toddler visit.
This appointment will enable us to establish a positive relationship with parents and children at a young age so we can get on the road to good oral health habits. We want to identify and manage patients at high risk for tooth decay before it becomes a serious issue.
While the first appointment is generally short and involves very little treatment, it is important for beginning a thorough prevention program and gives the child an opportunity to meet the dentist in a non-threatening way. We always invite parents to hold their child on their lap while our dentist looks inside the child’s mouth. Baby feels secure and we can provide a thorough visual exam.
Prior to the appointment, parents are asked to fill out medical and health information forms about their child. Parents can find the health history form on our website here. A complete history provides us with important information that may relate to your child’s dental development and needs. Questions like Did the baby have a premature birth? Does/did your child take many oral medications? are examples of questions we need answered.
Topics we discuss during the Terrific Toddler visit include:
- Your child’s dental development and teething progress
- How best to clean your infant’s mouth
- Oral habits, such as thumb sucking and pacifier use
- Diet and snacking habits
- Potential fluoride needs
- Your child’s individual risk for tooth decay
Parent education and cooperation is an important part of pediatric oral health care. We look forward to meeting you and your infant in the future.
To schedule your infant’s first appointment, please call Dr. Tracht and Dr. Briskie at (248) 608-2626.
As specialists in pediatric dentistry, Dr. Tracht, Dr. Briskie, their associates and staff often address parents’ concerns regarding the oral health of their children. Today, we are sharing information about how to protect children who play sports.
April is National Facial Protection Month and we’d like to remind our patients -- as well as parents, coaches and athletes -- to play it safe as they prepare to suit up for recreational and organized sports this spring and summer.
A child’s mouth and face can be easily injured if the proper precautions are not used while playing sports. In fact, according to the Centers for Disease Control, more than half of the 7 million sports and recreation-related injuries that occur each year are sustained by children as young as 5.
In a survey commissioned by the American Association of Orthodontics (AAO), 67 percent of parents admitted that their children do not wear a mouth guard while playing sports and athletes who do not wear mouth guards are 60 times more likely to sustain damage to their teeth.
The survey also found that 84 percent of children do not wear mouth guards while playing organized sports because they are not required to wear them. However, these same children may be required to wear other protective materials, such as helmets and shoulder pads. Mouth guards can be one of the least expensive pieces of protective equipment available and not only can they save teeth, they can also help protect jaws. Children wearing braces have slightly higher risk of oral injuries, including mouth lacerations, if their braces are hit by a ball or another player.
An effective mouth guard holds teeth in place and allows for normal speech and breathing. It should cover the teeth and,depending on the patient’s bite, also the gums. By wearing a properly fitted mouth guard, many accidents and traumatic injuries can be prevented. The American Dental Association estimates that mouth guards prevent more than 200,000 oral injuries each year.
Consider these tips before your child hits the playing field:
- Wear a mouth guard when playing contact sports. Mouth guards can help prevent injury to a person’s jaw, mouth and teeth. They are significantly less expensive than the cost to repair an injury. The staff at Dr. Tracht and Dr. Briskie’s office can make customized mouth guards to fit a patient’s mouth.
- Wear a helmet. Helmets absorb the energy of an impact and help prevent damage to the head.
- Wear protective eyewear. Eyes are extremely vulnerable to damage, especially when playing sports.
- Wear a face shield to avoid scratched or bruised skin. Hockey pucks, basketballs and racquetballs can cause severe facial damage at any age.
Do you have questions about mouth guards or how best to protect your athletic child? Give Dr. Tracht and Dr. Briskie, specialists in pediatric dentistry, a call or schedule an appointment.
Check out why mouth guards offer more protection for athletes than bubble wrap in this video by the American Association of Orthodontists!
As specialists in pediatric dentistry, Dr. Tracht, Dr. Briskie and their associates and staff often address parents’ concerns regarding the oral health of their children. Today, we are sharing information about how we care for our pediatric patients with special needs.
To us, every child is exceptional, which is why we are happy to cater to all children from infancy through early adulthood. This includes youngsters of pre-cooperative age and those with special needs including physical, mental and emotional challenges.
All of our pediatric dental specialists are highly trained to work with children of all backgrounds. We recommend establishing care with our patients as early as possible so we can be proactive in preventing oral issues and create a mutually beneficial relationship with the patient and caregiver. In fact, we support the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommendation that a child’s first trip to the dentist should be some time after the first tooth appears and by one year. This is especially important for children with special challenges. We can offer tips to parents and caregivers so they can promote good oral health habits at home.
How our office can assist special needs patients:
- Our "open-style" treatment area promotes a supportive and fun environment with fun items such as Gameboys and headphones for music and stories.
- We will provide and recommend special oral hygiene aids to assist patients who need them.
- We welcome caregivers to remain with their child during an appointment and to work in partnership with us.
- We work closely with the medical community to successfully manage our patients with complex concerns.
- We comfort our patients as much as possible and show and tell them what we're going to do before we do it to help ease worries and fears. It’s the tried and true “Show, Tell, Do” approach!
- If a child is not able cooperate for treatment, we can administer mild medications that provide a conscious (awake) sedation. For more complex cases, we can use unconscious sedation in a local hospital with the support of an anesthesiologist.
Our work with special needs patients was recently featured on Oakland County Moms, a Michigan-based Web site linking parents to local events and resources. To view the article, click here.
Do you have questions about your child with special needs visiting our office? Give Dr. Tracht and Dr. Briskie, specialists in pediatric dentistry, a call or schedule an appointment.
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As specialists in pediatric dentistry, we often address concerns parents have regarding their children’s oral health. Today, we are sharing information about what kinds of toothpastes are best to keep your little one’s smile strong and bright.
Fact: Tooth brushing tools date back to 3500-3000 BC when the Babylonians and the Egyptians made a brush by fraying the end of a twig.
Thankfully, we’ve come a long way from those days and now actually have a substance to clean our teeth with!
Tooth brushing is crucial for children to maintain good oral health and it is imperative that parents teach their children to brush their teeth at least twice a day. This prevents plaque build-up, which can cause cavities, bad breath, gum problems (gingivitis) and stained teeth.
Since many pediatric dental patients are extremely picky about the tastes they will tolerate, and parents are selective about what they put into their child's mouth, choosing the right toothpaste can be tricky. With so many options for toothpaste, it can be a daunting task to find one that's right for your child. Some flavoring and cleaning additives, such as cinnamon or sodium lauryl sulfate, can be irritating to oral issues and may contribute to canker sores.
What to Look For When Choosing A Toothpaste
When choosing a brand of toothpaste, Dr. Tracht and Dr. Briskie suggest you make sure to select one that is recommended by the American Dental Association (ADA). This will be stated right on the outside of the box with their familiar seal of approval. The ADA recommends toothpastes that have undergone extensive testing to make sure that they are safe to use and will not cause any harm to teeth. You may also wish to look for toothpaste that is recommended by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), who conduct scientific testing, as well.
It is important to tell your children to spit out toothpaste after brushing to prevent ingestion of too much fluoride; however, childrenwho are at high risk for cavities may benefit from a very small amount of fluoride toothpaste even before they can spit. This option should be considered very carefully though. Drs. Tracht and Briskie can help evaluate your child on an individual basis after a thorough examination and consultation. Remember, it’s always a good guideline to use no more than a "pea size" amount of toothpaste.
No matter what your child’s oral health needs are, there’s likely a toothpaste for you. Happy brushing from Dr. Tracht & Dr. Briskie!
Do you have questions about which toothpaste is best for your children? Give Drs. Tracht and Briskie, specialists in pediatric dentistry, a call or schedule an appointment. See here for more information about what we do and how we can help your child.
If your child is tongue-tied they have a condition known as ankyloglossia. This happens when the band of skin that attaches to the floor of the mouth, known as a frenum or frenulum, is too close to the tip of the tongue. This band of skin sometimes attaches too close to the gums behind the lower front teeth as well. When the frenum attaches too close to the tip of the tongue, the tongue is not able to move as freely.
Children may not be able to stick their tongue out further than their lips or can’t touch the roof of their mouth. When sticking out the tongue the tip may look heart-shaped rather than coming to a point due to the restricted movement.
So why does it matter of my child is tongue-tied?
Some children have trouble sucking and, therefore, the first problem is noticed when breastfeeding or nursing. Some children may have trouble with certain speech sounds, especially “l, r, t, d, n, sh, th, and z” sounds. Others may develop a lisp. Additionally, these children can have difficulty removing food stuck to their palate or sides of their mouth; they also may have more plaque and tartar build-up. A frenum that is attached too closely behind the bottom front teeth can cause gum recession.
What can be done if my child is tongue-tied?
Some children who have mild tongue-tie may be best treated by careful observation and consideration of speech therapy by a Certified Speech Pathologist. Others may benefit from a minor surgical procedure, called a frenectomy, which can be performed in the office. A frenectomy is done with a special laser that relocates the attachment of the frenum to a more favorable position that frees up the movement of the tongue.
Do you have questions about your child’s tongue-tie? Give Drs. Tracht and Briskie, specialists in pediatric dentistry, a call or schedule an appointment. See here for more information about what we do and how we can help your child.
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