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Crowns for Baby Teeth

Stainless Steel Crowns

My Dentists wants to put crowns on my child’s teeth. This seems like an extreme measure since they will eventually fall out anyways!

Usually, dentists repair decayed teeth with filling material. However, when teeth are badly broken down by the cavity (decay) process, have had nerve treatment or are weakened by a developmental condition, replacing almost the entire crown portion of a tooth with traditional filling material is not always a practical nor secure solution.

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A remedy must be found that allows the tooth to withstand the forces of biting and chewing  long enough for the incoming adult tooth to replace it – which could be many years.

Replacing the diseased crown of a tooth with a durable stainless steel crown (silver caps) is the most economical and durable solution until the tooth falls out and is replaced with the permanent (adult) tooth. These caps are not made in a lab like permanent adult crowns are. They come ready made in a variety of shapes and sizes, no impressions need to be taken, and there is no additional lab fees associated with their costs.  Additionally, they are categorized under  “routine restorative” so most insurance policies cover them as basic treatment. They are just another way to restore baby teeth so that they can function.

Why not just pull the tooth?

11-16-2016-7-58-51-pmThis is a common question, and sometimes, the teeth are not repairable and must be removed. However, taking out teeth before their natural time is a “last resort” solution. Baby teeth are vital to the dentition as natural space holders for the permanent teeth. Their premature removal will interfere with the eruption of the adult teeth.

Removing a baby tooth before its time is not the end of the problem. The space where the baby tooth was removed must still be replaced with a spacer maintaining appliance so that the adjacent teeth will not start to move into and invade this important place.

The chart below shows the normal eruption pattern of primary and permanent teeth. You will notice that there are many years between the emergence of the baby teeth and the age at which the adult teeth will eventually arrive in the mouth to replace them.

 

Permanent (Adult) Teeth

During a child’s teenage years, The adult teeth continue to develop there is significant growth and development of the dentition and jaws. This needs to be taken into consideration when restoring a badly broken down adult tooth in a child.

If you refer back to the eruption chart, you will notice that the first permanent teeth begin to erupt around 6 years of age.

BGC

From the illustration above, you can see that if a baby tooth becomes badly broken down by decay or a developmental condition when the child is still young, a suitable interim solution needs to be found until the permanent adult teeth are ready to emerge into position. Stainless steel crowns become an effective, affordable and practical semi-temporary measure until then.

Stainless steel crowns have been around for over 75 years and are safe and effective. They are easy to keep clean and rarely allow decay to reoccur. Although, some parents may not like the metallic appearance of the steel crowns,  since baby molars are in the back of the mouth, they are less noticeable.

All of this makes them an affordable and effective treatment solution for an otherwise serious problem.

We hope you have found this article informative. Please visit and subscribe to our blog to learn more about Your Smile Dental Care.

 

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Yours in Better Dental Health,
The Your Smile Dental Team
(905) 576-4537
(416) 783-3533
www.yoursmiledentalcare.com

 

 

 

 


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Back to School Dental Care

Making a list and checking it twice?

22-08-2016 4-19-56 PMThis is the time of year that we begin turning our attention away from the lazy hazy days of summer and back towards the upcoming new school year. Getting back into routine in terms of sleeping, eating and grooming is the perfect time to remind your children about the importance of oral care.

And although a dental check-up may be the last thing on your mind as you go through your child’s back-to-school checklist, you may want to reconsider. We now know that dental problems, including cavities, leads to more absences from school which can result in poorer academic performances.

Many parents do not realize that dental decay spreads through baby (primary) teeth much more quickly than in permanent teeth. Early detection can help prevent small issues from growing into much larger and more painful problems.

 

Prevention Tips:

Implementing just a few changes in the way we approach our children’s oral health can go a long way in preventing cavities.

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  1. Frequency – This is the #1 most important cavity prevention tip. Teeth need 4 to 5 hours to heal after an acid attack caused by eating/drinking. Mineral rich salvia is our body’s natural defence against cavities, but you have to allow it the time it needs to remineralize affected enamel.
  2. Diet – Any food that has natural or added sugars and starches in it can be used by bacteria in the mouth that then excrete damaging acid onto tooth surfaces. Highly acidic foods will also eat away at enamel. Decreasing the amount of sugars in your child’s diet, choosing water as their preferred beverage, eliminate snacking and choosing foods that help buffer against the acidic nature of other foods all go a long away in helping to prevent cavities.
  3. Xylitol gum – Chewing gum in school is probably still a no-no, but perhaps you can speak with your child’s teacher and explain the benefits of xylitol. It is found in some sugarless gums and is effective in controlling the amount of acidity in the mouth. This, in turn, helps to reduce the bacterial population and their damaging activity.
  4. Cheese – Pack some cubes of cheese in your child’s lunch and encourage them to eat if before and after their meals. Cheeses not only coats and protects enamel during meals and helps to balance the ph-levels in the mouth during acid attacks, but also contains minerals and casein which have anti-cavity properties.
  5. Water – Water is the preferred beverage of choice for a healthy mouth. Encouraging your child to also rinse with water following a meal when they cannot brush will help dilute acids in the mouth and wash away food debris.

 

Other Tips to Consider:

  • 22-08-2016 4-03-23 PMNo Snacking – The health of the oral cavity depends on the spacing out of meals. Hunger is the body’s way of letting us know that it’s time to eat, but snack time during school is now deeply entrenched in our school system. Educating yourself about the correlation between meal frequency and tooth decay will help you begin an open and honest conversation with your school’s administrator about the harmful effects of recess snacks not only on teeth but on classroom behaviour also. Good Luck!
  • School Insurance – We have seen many dental emergencies over our 30+ years in the dental business. Many of these accidents occur at school. We have a number of patients that benefitted from having had enrolled in the school insurance program that is offered. One patient, in particular, is still having ongoing dental treatment 20 years after the initial injury to his tooth. His parents certainly did not expect to ever have to use the policy, but are now glad that they enrolled in the program. The long-term prognosis for this particular tooth suggests that this patient will have ongoing maintenance costs for the rest of his life.
  • Sports guard – We can never emphasise enough the importance of protecting teeth during sports and playful activity. Again, we see many accidents caused during activity and the school ground is the most popular place for injury. No child probably wants to be the only students wearing a sports guard, but we do encourage it’s use.
  • Oral Hygiene at School – You may want to consider buying a travel-sized toothbrush and toothpaste for your child to use at school. Perhaps you can approach like-minded parents with children in the same classroom about this idea to help make this in-school routine more appealing to your child.
  • Plan Ahead – Life is busy we know, but setting sufficient time aside to plan healthy meals will help you avoid scrambling during the precious minutes in the morning to pack your child’s lunch.

 

Attending Post Secondary School?

Even young adults beginning their post-secondary studies should take the time now to see their dentist before school begins, especially if they are still on their parent’s dental benefits. With so many new changes happening during this exciting new academic experience, the stresses can build up.

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During exam time we get an increased number of emergency calls to our office from students complaining of pain, not only throughout the oral cavity, but also around the jaws, ears, head and neck. Oftentimes, it is due to the increased forces of grinding and clenching (a side effect of stress), while other times it is due to the swelling associated with the emerging wisdom teeth.

Another common problem is a sudden increase in the rate of decay amongst young adults in post-secondary school with no past history of serial cavities. Most times we can attribute this to a change in diet, especially the frequency at which snacks and beverages such of coffee/tea/sodas are consumed. Our recommendation is to always be vigilant when it comes to oral hygiene care and the numbers of meals/snacks/beverages eaten throughout the day. Give you teeth the healing time it needs!

A thorough check up before going away to school will help to take care of any dental issues that may arise during the school year.

Lastly, if you are thinking about having a check-up when you come home during winter break, it is important to reserve your check-up appointment well in advance as many students are thinking the same thing you are!


If it’s been a while since your children have had their teeth checked and cleaned, give us a call today.  We’ll make sure your child’s teeth are looking sharp and ready for school!

 

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Yours in Better Dental Health,
The Your Smile Dental Care Team
(905) 576-4537
(416) 783-3533
www.yoursmiledentalcare.com

 

 


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Retained Primary Teeth

22-02-2016 1-50-43 PMChildren hit many different milestones in their young lives with some children reaching developmental stages well before others. It’s not uncommon for parents to be concerned and seek our opinion when their child does not lose their baby teeth on time.

While there is a usual pattern and time frame for teeth to emerge into the mouth and others to be lost, as dentists, we begin to become concerned when a tooth/teeth goes well beyond these expected dates and there is a significant delay.

There are several common reasons for what we called “retained” baby teeth. A dental clinical and x-ray examination will determine why the baby tooth is failing to fall out (exfoliate). Afterwards, the dentist will decide whether to extract the baby tooth or keep it in the dentition.

It is not uncommon to find differences in treatment options amongst dentists as there are many factors to consider before deciding on a treatment plan, such as preserving bone, aesthetics, function and maintaining contact with surrounding and opposing teeth be preserved.

Incomplete root resorption

Have you ever wondered why only the crown portion of a baby tooth falls out? This is because the root portion of the tooth dissolves away. Sometimes, the roots do not get resorbed equally or completely. The course of action that the dentist will take often depends on the location and position of the adult tooth. Because the baby teeth are natural space holders, removing them too early can interfere with space that is needed for the eventually arrival of the adult tooth. A dentist may wait for the baby roots to eventually disappear or may help the process along by removing the final portions of the baby tooth to allow the underlying adult tooth to emerge.

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Bone Fusion

22-02-2016 2-19-13 PMUnder normal conditions the teeth and bone do not touch, rather, they are connected by way of tiny hair-like fibers. Think of how a trampoline mat is connected to the supporting steel frame by way of tension springs. In this way, the tooth is free to move slightly so it can withstand the forces exerted upon it during chewing. Sometimes, however, teeth become directly attached to it’s surrounding bone. Treatment depends on whether or not there is an adult tooth present underneath the baby tooth.

a) Adult Tooth present – If the baby tooth is fused to the bone AND has an adult tooth to replace it then your dentist will likely extract the tooth. A space maintaining device will be placed on the adjacent teeth in order to keep this space available for the future incoming adult tooth. The area and adult tooth will then be monitored during it’s own eruption process for any signs of abnormality.

b) Adult Tooth Absent – If the baby tooth is fused to the bone and DOES NOT have an adult to replace it then the decision of extraction versus retention becomes a more complicated issue and bone preservation becomes a very important consideration.

i) Maintain – If the retained baby tooth is of sound structure and is in a good position to function (chew) with the other teeth then your dentist will likely opt to keep this tooth in the dentition and monitor it over the years. It is not uncommon to find many older adults that still have a retained baby tooth. Good oral hygiene is very important as there is no adult tooth to replace this tooth. If the tooth is lost eventually, then a dental implant can be considered.

ii) Maintain with Modifications – This is often the case when the tooth is submerged somewhat and is therefore lower in height and dimensionally smaller than the adjacent teeth. If the dentist decides that that the tooth is viable enough to be kept in the mouth, a few modification may have to be done to the tooth in order for it to function properly and have contact with all surrounding and opposing teeth.  The tooth can be built up and reshaped in order to achieve function, but the tooth and surrounding bone will have to be closely monitored over the years.

 iii) Extraction – If the baby tooth is removed now, the resulting space will have to be preserved with a space maintaining device until a future implant can be considered. The dentist may opt to perform a procedure called decoronation, whereby the crown portion is removed from the tooth and the site left to heal over. It is believed that important supporting fibers will then reconnect with the adjacent permanent teeth present. As these neighbouring teeth advance in their eruption process, the bone height and width can be maintained for many years until an implant can be considered.

Adult Tooth Misalignment

2-26-2016 1-05-43 PMUnerupted – If the developing adult tooth is “stuck” in it’s position underneath, in the bone, the baby tooth may also be delayed in falling out. There are dental procedures that can help move the adult tooth along in it’s eruption process and eventually into position in the dentition. Your dentist may send you to an orthodontist for further evaluation. In consultation with the orthodontist, both short and long term solutions can be discussed that is unique to your child. Today, interceptive orthodontic treatment can go a long way in preventing the need for more extensive orthodontic treatment in the future.

Erupted – It is not uncommon to have adult teeth come into the mouth in front of or behind the baby tooth it’s suppose to replace. Removal of the baby tooth will depend on the position of the adult tooth, in which arch (upper or lower) this is occurring and at what stage of “falling out” the baby tooth is in. Although seeing permanent teeth erupt out of position when the baby teeth are still present is an unsettling thing for parents to see occur, it is a common situation. Once the baby teeth fall out or are removed, the adult tooth will eventually move into place naturally or with the assistance of orthodontia.

Lastly,

We cannot emphasize enough the importance of regular dental check-ups. Dental development and eruption problems are more common than one would think. Missing teeth can be caused by a number of things including genetics, injury, infection and endocrine disorders.

As challenging as some cases may be, with today’s advances in dentistry, there are now a variety of short and long term solutions available for consideration.  Early diagnosis and intervention is often an important consideration in planning for a healthy tomorrow.

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Yours in Better Health,
The Your Smile Dental Care team
(905) 576-4537
(416) 783-3533
www.yoursmiledentalcare.com

 

 

 

 

 


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Tips for Teething

Teething Tots

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Sometimes, it just seems so unfair. Just when you get to that stage in a baby’s life when they’re finally sleeping through the night the Terrible Teething phase begins.

What most parents want to know is how long the teething stage will last and what are some of the most effective remedies that we would recommend.

Unfortunately, we can not predict how long nor how severe your baby’s teething will be. It may surprise you to learn that some babies are born with teeth!

Generally speaking, however, teething can begin as early as 3 months of age and ends with the emergence of the last primary teeth – the second molars. Knowing that these last teeth will arrive between the ages of 2 to 3 doesn’t make the idea of teething any more thrilling, but usually there are some periods of relief in between each type of tooth’s appearance. Hopefully, you’ll learn what works best for your child along the way, making each teething period more tolerable than the last.

Know the Signs

Teething

 

The signs of tooth eruption will usually begin before the first tooth pokes through the gums. Symptoms can last for just a few short days while the new tooth emerges, or as long as several months if they come in close succession.

Drooling, fever, irritability, tender and swollen gums, and trouble sleeping are all common during teething. Your baby may also be more fussy at mealtimes, grab at their face and ears, and have looser bowel movements.

When to worry

Oftentimes, you may notice several of these symptoms together, however, some symptoms should not be dismissed. If your baby is experiencing a fever, diarrhea, vomiting or a fever lasting more than 24 hours you should have it checked out by a physician.

Ways to Soothe

Not all babies are fussy during their teething periods. If you’re asking, there’s lots of people and plenty of online sites willing to give advice on how to soothe your teething child. Some methods work, some don’t, while some can be actually dangerous  like this still trendy item. You will soon find out what works best for your bay.

Consider some of these simple tips to begin with:

  • Drooling – Excessive drooling, although part of the teething process, can cause skin irritation that can become sore and chapped. Rubbing your04-01-2016 10-18-29 AM baby’s wet chin can also start to irritate the skin after a while. When drying your baby’s chin with a clean cloth, use soft, dabbing motions then apply a water-based moisturizing cream or lotion.
  • Pressure – Try rubbing your baby’s aching gums with slight pressure using a clean finger or clean, moistened cloth/gauze.
  • Cold therapy –  Cold therapy can be a great reliever of discomfort. With babies, however, you have to be careful not to use extreme cold as it can harm the tender tissues of the mouth, lips, gums and even hands. There are products on the market that you can freeze, but we recommend using a chilled cloth, pacifier, spoon or teething ring and always under supervision. Be sure to check teething items often for signs of wear and breakage.
  • Gnawing – Babies seems to naturally grab onto anything and put it in their mouths. The pressure associated with biting on hard items can be soothing. If your child has moved onto solid foods, you can chill hard foods such as whole carrots or celery and allow them to gnaw on it.  They can hold the food with their hands or you can put the food item into a meshed product that is designed specifically for this purpose. There are teething cookies available that are both nutritious and shaped for handling. Again, close supervision is a must for any pieces that may break off and become a choking hazard.
  • Chilled foods – You can offer them their foods chilled if they will take it. There are products that are designed for self feeding of pureed foods. By placing pureed foods into the mesh container your baby will be able to chew and suck on the food without the risk of choking.
  • Pain relievers – Consult your baby’s physician if you choose to use an over the counter pain reliever as a remedy for teething. Understand the difference between  acetaminophen and  ibuprofen. Both are pain relievers. Ibuprofen reduces inflammation (swelling and redness), tends to last a little longer, but must be given with food to avoid stomach upset. It is not recommended for babies under 6 months of age.  Acetaminophen is milder on the stomach, but is not an anti-inflammatory. If you are unsure of the correct dosage, intake frequency or the potential side effects, always consult your doctor or pharmacist as this information is especially crucial for your baby’s welfare. Beware of teething medications that contain Benzocaine – a local anesthetic. It is found in common pain relievers for sore gums (Anbesol, Hurricaine, Orajel, Baby Orajel, and Orabase) and has been linked to a rare, but serious condition called methemoglobinemia that interferes with blood oxygen.
  • Alcohol – No matter how much someone may insist that whiskey is the best natural pain reliever, we cannot recommend it use.

Late Teeth

It is not uncommon for parents to be concerned when no tooth has appeared by 8 months of age, especially when they see other babies getting their teeth. There is a usual and customary pattern of eruption, but some children’s teeth are slower to appear.

If you see no other signs of impaired development, especially with respect to bones, skin and hair, there probably isn’t anything to be concerned about. However, by about 18 months teeth should be starting to emerge into the mouth. We expect that all 20 teeth should have made their arrival by 3 years of age.

Use this chart as a reference guide:

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Your Child’s First Visit

A good recommendation to follow is to have your child’s first dental visit by age one years of age since tooth decay can occur as soon as teeth are present in the mouth. We call this 1st Dental Visit at 1st Birthday.  An early visit to our office is a good opportunity to acquaint your child with going to the dentist and allows us to examine your child’s dental development and discuss things like:

1. How to properly care for their teeth and mouth.

2. Dental development including teething and losing teeth.

3. Why tooth decay occurs and how to prevent it.

4. Proper dietary habits for healthy teeth.

5. Habits such as snacking, sippy cups, night time bottles, thumb sucking, pacifiers and tongue thrusting.

6. How to prevent some of the common accidents that can occur affecting the mouth and teeth.

04-01-2016 10-22-47 AMThere is an increasing number of children developing preschool cavities. Prevention is what every parent should be aiming for with regards to their child’s overall health. It has been our experience that the sooner children begin learning about the importance of proper oral care and having regular dental visits, the more likely that they will have healthier teeth in their adult years.

No one want a child’s first visit to the dentist be a repair visit because of dental decay, infection, neglect or due to an emergency accident. It takes time to build a trusting relationship with healthcare providers and every child is different.

If starting your child’s dental health off right sounds like a good idea, give us a call today!

At Your Smile Dental Care, we believe that kids like to have fun. We know from experience that introducing your child to the dentist at an early age and in a positive, relaxed manner will help them come to see dental visits as routine so they can avoid future apprehension.

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Yours in Better Dental Health,

The Your Smile Dental Care Team
(905) 576-4537
(416) 783-3533
www.yoursmiledentalcare.com

 

 

Parents in the Dental Treatment Room

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We treat many children in our practice. We also have many patients that have “grown up” in our practice. Caring for children can be challenging, but also very rewarding. It is tremendously satisfying to gain a child’s trust after managing their care under trying circumstances.

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It takes a village…

Seeing their confidence grow and knowing that they are leaving our office with a sense of accomplishment and pride makes everyone’s effort worthwhile. And when we say effort, we mean everyone’s – ours, the child and their parents/caregivers.

The influence parents/caregivers have over their child’s attitudes towards dental health and responsibility makes their role very significant to us and our efforts. Although, we may agree on what an ideal child patient may be like, there is not really what you would call a “typical” child patient. That is because the behaviours, needs and temperaments of children differ so vastly. In fact, a child may behave one way one day and entirely different the next visit. At Your Smile Dental Care we are parents ourselves, and as such, will treat you child as we would want our own children treated.

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Our goal is to complete the planned treatment safely and effectively and provide as comfortable and enjoyable an experience as possible. To accomplish this, we need the co-operation of both the child and parent. This brings into mind the question of …

Parents in the treatment room

We believe that you know your child best. You are oftentimes their only advocate. In the best interests of your child, we all must be on the same page when it comes to managing a fearful or difficult situation. Your child’s focus and attention is an essential part of allowing us to delivery safe, quality care. It is with this in mind that we offer the following guidelines to help to ensure the success of your child’s visit:

Anxious Parents
09-03-2015 4-47-39 PMOftentimes, a child’s visit to our office can be more distressing for a parent than the child. Parents can unknowing transmit their own anxieties and fears to their child which, in turn, can affect their attitudes and responses. Sometimes, we find ourselves having to manage both the patient and the parent. You help your child and our team by remaining in control when your child is feeling out of control. If you feel that you are ill-equipped to cope and offer positive support in the treatment room, perhaps you can designate another caregiver to accompany your child in the operatory.  Over time, as trust develops, you may find your own anxiety levels improve to the point where you can be an effective partner during treatment.

Undivided Attention
When we need to give instructions to a child to encourage them to participate responsibly while we care23-11-2015 4-48-30 PM for their teeth, we try to appeal to their age-appropriate sense of obligation, value and logic. However, when there are many distractions in our treatment room, speaking to an apprehensive child and trying to gain their focus and trust can be incredibly difficult. In the treatment room, it is very important that the primary focus and interaction remain between the dental team and the child so that communication and guidance can take place without distractions or interruptions and that confusion does not arise and complicate matters. It is with these consideration in mind that  most dentists will ask for your cooperation in remaining a silent partner in the treatment room unless otherwise asked for asked to your assistance and emotional support.

Coming in and out of the treatment room
During dental care can also be extremely disruptive to both the child and dental team. We offer a chair for you to sit on during the dental procedure. If you prefer to read to pass the time along, we have plenty of magazines in the greeting area or invite you to bring your own material.

One family member only in the treatment room
It goes without saying that more than one family member in the room can be a tremendous distraction for the patient and dental team and the room can become crowded and disruptive. Informal checkup visits may allow for a more playful “family experience” in the treatment room, but the care we deliver during more complex, invasive procedures demands more concentration and order. Designate the parent or caregiver that can best support your child and understand the dental after-care instructions given.

23-11-2015 3-37-08 PMLet us work our magic
We are trained to identify certain behaviours and modify our strategies and techniques accordingly. We are accustomed to anticipating sudden movements or outbursts. Hampering our efforts by distracting your child’s attention with words or gestures can escalate an otherwise manageable scenario. We will certainly call upon you for assistance should your intervention become necessary.

Appreciation
Nothing educates a parent more than having an opportunity to see our efforts and the efforts of their child firsthand. Watching our dental team perform helps most parents gain a new appreciation and understanding for the skills needed to navigate an encounter while still providing their child with a positive patient experience.

23-11-2015 4-37-17 PMNegative words
Although a parent’s intention may be honourable, phrases like, “It’s not going to hurt” can be incorrect or misleading. Your words alone can arouse fear and anxiety where none may have existed. Not all fearful children are uncooperative. Likewise, not all uncooperative children are fearful.

Unaccompanied children
Sometimes, children behave and concentrate better without their parent in the room. If you feel this applies to your child or would like to foster independence, you can always stand just outside the room within ear and eyeshot.

Building Relationships
Appreciate that we are trying to establish the type of trusting relationship with your child that will foster a long term healthy, positive and responsible attitude towards their well being that will hopefully remain with them throughout their lives. To do this we need your support. Your own positive words and attitudes are tremendously infectious.

Other concerns that come to mind

Mood – It has been our experience that young children are much more emotionally 23-11-2015 4-15-11 PMcooperative between the hours of 9am and 12pm when they are rested, alert and have not spent a long, tiring day at school, possibly worrying about their upcoming appointment. This is an especially important consideration when it is a nervous child’s first visit. Nothing is gained when we expect the best from someone when they are at their worst.

Preparation – Parents have the ability to shape their children’s behaviour and how they deal with their feelings. We understand that keeping a positive attitude when discussing your child’s upcoming visit, without giving them any false hope or misleading details, can be challenging. If you suspect that your child is extremely apprehensive about their dental appointment and time permits, perhaps you can “drop by” the office to pick up the medical history form you will need to complete for their first appointment. This way, they’ll be able to meet some of the staff and leave with a prize from the treasure box. The encounter will be short and sweet and create a sense of familiarity for their next visit. In the meantime, keep conversations brief and simple. We find that the less said, the better, so try not to include too many details. If you are unsure of something, just say so and tell them they can ask us at their appointment.

23-11-2015 3-51-07 PMDental Language – We all appreciate when complicated, unfamiliar or fearful matters are simplified and explained in terms we understand and can relate to. It helps us be in a better position to make informed decisions and move forward in the problem-solving process. We introduce positive, yet simple language when addressing your child to help breakdown planned treatment into simple terms they can understand and appreciate to help them get through unfamiliar or difficult situations. Our “dental language” may sound over-simplified, but we know it to be an effective way to reduce patient fear and improve behaviour. Our language will grow in sophistication and complexity as your child grows and matures. Our ultimate goal is to equip them the language and knowledge they will need as adults to continue to make wise and informed decisions with respect to their dental health.

Behaviour management techniques – We have seen many children over the years who would not cooperate in other offices. While we are not miracle workers, we do believe in your child and their ability to overcome their fears and anxieties. We are equipped with an array of techniques to identify and manage many different types of behaviours in children in order to complete treatment safely and successfully. Understand however, that if a dentist’s instructions to a child takes on a more serious tone, it is done so with the intent of appealing to a child’s sense of responsibility and to disarm a child’s uncontrollable emotional state. The goal is to not allow a situation to escalate to the point where a child feels less safe and more out of control.

23-11-2015 4-20-21 PMPositive Reinforcements – It is absolutely amazing to see how empowered and confident a child becomes after successfully accomplishing a difficult appointment. The praise that follows helps to strengthen their resolve to trust and behave more positively at their next visit. Your co-operation and trust is also essential in these matters. Together, we can help your child develop courage and create a better dental future for themselves. Children who put forth the effort and determination to succeed should, “Own the moment!”  When good behaviour is rewarded quickly and often, additional value is added and positive attitudes are reinforced and strengthened. A parent’s positive follow-up words, smiles, hugs, high-fives etc. are, most definitely the best reward a child can receive.

04-08-2014 11-54-04 PMPrevious traumatic experience – When we care for a child that has had a previous traumatic experience, they are already armed with some very concrete ideas about dental offices. Our job is to convince them otherwise and this could take several visits before treatment can be initiated. If a child is in immediate pain or injured, then the dentist is faced with having to accomplish treatment and try to change some of the child’s attitudes and trust issues during the first visit. As dentists, we do our best, but if restoring a child’s teeth will take several , complex treatment appointments, sometimes it is in the child’s best interest to see a children’s specialist where they can be sedated and have all the treatment completed in one visit.

23-11-2015 4-29-58 PMExpectations – There are times when a parent’s expectations for their child and the dental team is just too high or unrealistic. This is especially true in the case where a child has a tremendous amount of treatment necessary. The ultimate goal is to provide the level of care that repairs the dental destruction without further damaging the child psychologically. Together, we can come up with a plan to deliver the care needed while appreciating that children have different abilities and that circumstances differ from child to child and sometimes day to day.

Healthcare is a necessity – Teaching your child that visiting the dentist is a necessity, not a choice, and that the dental team is here to help keep their teeth healthy and beautiful for years to come is one of the best ways to foster a positive attitude. It’s difficult, however,  to teach your children responsibility if you are not demonstrating it in your own life. You can hinder or help your child and their experiences based on you own actions and words, so please consider them carefully.

Lastly…

my-boy-732736-mNo single method or technique can be used for all children nor every visit. Trusting relationships and coping skills form over time and each interaction with your child is an opportunity for us to establish the rapport and approach that best suits your child.

The long term rewards of treating children successfully is seeing the healthy dental attitudes they develop as the grow into adulthood. Helping children triumph brings us our own tremendous feelings of fulfillment, achievement and pride in our chosen profession and demonstrates to us that our efforts are indeed worthwhile and fruitful.

One thing we have learned over our 30 years of experience is to … Never underestimate the capabilities of children!

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The YOUR SMILE Dental Care Team
(905) 576-4537
(416) 783-3533
http://www.yoursmiledentalcare.com

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White Spots

Q: I have two white spots on my upper front teeth that I’ve had my whole life. I’ve tried bleaching with teeth whitening products, but they’re still there. What can I do to get rid of them?

Turners Tooth
There are a number of circumstances or conditions than can result in areas on the enamel that appear markedly whiter than the rest of the enamel. The photo above clearly shows a distinct round dot that is typical of a condition know as Turner’s Hypoplasia. It is the result of a childhood trauma to the mouth that disturbed the enamel development of an adult tooth as it was forming in the jaws at the time of accident.

09-11-2015 3-57-36 PMInjury to a child’s mouth can occur quite easily especially when they are beginning to crawl/walk and explore the world around them. Ten permanent (adult) teeth develop in the jaw bone immediately below the ten primary (baby) teeth that they will eventually replace. Even though you cannot see the adult teeth, injuries to the baby teeth can affect the health and development of these important replacement teeth.

If, during a fall, the child’s mouth is injured, one of the primary teeth may make contact with the facial (and sometimes the palatal) side of an upper front permanent (adult) tooth with enough force to interfere with the cells that are forming the adult enamel on that particular tooth. Injuries such as this usually occur before three years of age.

The disturbance can result is a round whitish, sometimes yellowish spot in a specific location which corresponds to where the baby tooth “banged into” the adult tooth and mineralization was impaired before it was completely finished forming. This spot is visible when the adult tooth comes into the mouth and usually affects only one tooth in the mouth.

Diagnosis and Treatment

There are other causes of Hypoplasia that can leave the enamel weak and more susceptible to the cavity process. If the size and depth of the spot is minimal, it can usually be fixed quite easily. The dentist will first identify and determine the cause of the white spot, ensure that more teeth aren’t affected and that it isn’t an indication of a more serious condition. If the area of concern is only cosmetic in nature there are two common remedies:

Microbrasion – If the affected area of the enamel is very superficial in depth then a conservative procedure called microbrasion can be done. A very minute layer on the affected enamel is removed using an acidic/abrasive mixture with some products having a bleaching agent added to their formula. The amount of enamel that is removed during microabrasion is minuscule and unnoticeable, however, there is a risk that the resulting thinner more translucent enamel may allow the darker coloured dentin to shine through causing the new surface colour to also appear darker. If your dentist is planning on adding a whitening procedure to this treatment in an attempt to better match the affected spot to the same colour as your natural tooth shade, they may decide to wait several weeks since it takes this long for surface remineralization to occur.

Filling – If the damaged enamel penetrates further into the tooth then the area can be fixed with a tooth-coloured resin filling material. Your dentist will choose a shade of enamel coloured dental filling material that most closely matches the white shade of your natural tooth. The white spot will be removed and replaced with this dental material then buffed to a high glossy finish for a natural-looking, glossy sheen.

Turner's Treatment
Veneer
– If the tooth is spotted with several larger areas of discolouration, yet the integrity of the tooth’s crown is still very sound, then a matching porcelain dental veneer can be place over the entire frontal portion of the tooth somewhat like a false nail is attached to finger nails.

Considerations

22-12-2014 12-03-57 PMIt is important to understand that there are other, more serious reasons for white spotting on the teeth that are not just a matter of cosmetic concern, but a problem that can leave the enamel susceptible to further damage and deterioration.

Oftentimes, parents do not realize that their child has sustained a dental injury until obvious signs and symptoms appear such as an infectious gum boil, loose tooth or darkened enamel. Some dental injuries, if left untreated, can lead to damage of the developing adult teeth.

If your child has sustained an injury and you suspect that it may have affected one or more of their teeth it should be evaluated by your dentist as soon as possible.  An examination will determine the severity of the injury, if immediate treatment is necessary or if it is a situation that should be monitored.

Our smiles are important to us which is why even small imperfections on our teeth can be bothersome. As the demand for perfect smiles continue to increase, so do the improvements in dental materials and techniques making it easier for us to restore Your Smile.  In fact, it’s a simple as a call to (905) 5SMILES. 🙂

Yours in Better Health,
Dr. Sam Axelrod and Associates
(905) 576-4537
(416) 783-3533
www.yoursmiledentalcare.com

 

 

 

 

 


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Something About Mary, A Dental Story…

Building Relationships ~ One patient at a time!

26-10-2015 11-16-00 AMLike many of our patients who “grew up in our practice,” Mary never had a fear of going to the dentist. From a young age she has always been a happy smile that we get to see twice a year.

She brightens up our office every time she walks through our doors. One day recently, we asked her about this sunny disposition of hers when it comes to her appointments and her answer turned into this wonderful story that she then wrote down afterwards when she got home and sent it to us. We feel privileged to share it with you.


 

              I get excited when I get to come in and get my teeth cleaned. There’s nothing like that fresh, just polished feel after a check-up and cleaning.

            When it comes to my comfort level at my dental office, I’ve never really thought about it. I’ve been coming here all of my life and I feel a great connection with the whole team. When I come in, I get a chance to catch up and share what’s going on in my life with everyone and I know they truly care about me. Everyone’s been here, like forever and I have a connection here like no other healthcare place I attend.        

            One time when I was in about grade 10 we had a class discussion at school about fears. I couldn’t believe it when so many hands went up to choose, “the dentist!” I was like, “What?” I honestly couldn’t relate. I always looked forward to my trips to Dr. Axelrod, rides in the dental chair, learning about my teeth and how to care for them, choosing my toy prize in the treasure box, being part of the “No Cavity Club”, and going home with my new dental goody bag containing a new toothbrush and kid’s toothpaste and colouring book. I mean, what’s not to like about that?”

            My parents never made a big fuss about treatment or anything about the dentist for that matter, so visits just seemed commonplace and routine. So, when I had a cavity once, I never had any fear before my visit. It was treated like all of my other routine visits – fun, fun fun! Getting my tooth fixed was just another fun visit.

            Now that I’m an adult, I’ve been coming in for more frequent cleaning because I feel like every 9 months is just way too long between cleanings. I’m told that I have really healthy teeth and I know that because I’ve always taken care of them I will probably be able to keep them forever and not have to worry about my teeth when I’m older. Whenever any of my friends have any problems with their teeth I say, “Go see my dentist. You’ll love him!” That’s my story!



Wow!
  When we first asked her about her sunny side, we weren’t expecting all of this, but we weren’t surprised either. We have many adults who have been coming here since their “First Visit.” We are tremendously honoured when they choose us to care for their own children’s dental health and appreciate all of their kind referrals of family and friends.

af51dd89-a5da-4f6a-b6d1-521031ac6af6Do you have a great dental story for us?

We’d love to hear about it and others would love to also. Positive dental stories help people have hope that they can come into a dental office, regardless of their level of dental health, and know that they will be treated kindly and receive the same type of care that Mary has enjoyed all of her life.

The road to optimal dental health is a journey for some and we’re here to help set you on the right path. It just takes a few steps forward to a place where you’ll find a comforting welcome! 🙂
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Yours in Better Dental Health,

The Your Smile Dental Care Team,
(905) 576-4537
(416) 783-3533
www.yoursmiledentalcare.com