Common Dental Work at Every Age

Good oral hygiene

Good oral hygiene is paramount to keeping up with your overall health and wellbeing. Along with helping to prevent your teeth from decay, and fighting off bad breath, clean and well-cared-for teeth can help ward away serious health risks as well.

Infants and Toddlers

It is important to use soft bristles or a soft washcloth to clean infants’ gums even before teeth start to erupt. Once their first tooth erupts, schedule an appointment with us.

Most of these early visits to the dentist are to familiarize young children with the process and to introduce them to the staff. If they start early and become comfortable in the dental office, they are less likely to be afraid in the future. This is also an ideal time for the dental team to work alongside parents to teach proper brushing and flossing techniques that will last a lifetime.

According to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD), the sooner parents set up their toddler’s first appointment; the more likely their children will continue to have healthy habits and teeth throughout their lives.

Depending on the number of teeth present, some dental visits may include procedures such as checking for cavities, fluoride rinses, or dental cleanings.

Children

With childhood comes a lust for all things sweet and a rebellious streak that can often show itself by refusing to brush their teeth. Cavities are to be expected, both in “baby teeth” and the second set of adult teeth. With many nooks and crannies, especially in the teeth toward the back of the mouth, young children may need help when brushing and flossing. A fluoride rinse and sealants are common preventative steps in this age group, but cavities can occur.

Metal-free fillings are a great option, making a pretty smile possible, and boosting self-esteem alongside good hygiene.

Braces or retainers are another common procedure performed on children and teenagers. If baby teeth are lost prematurely, spacers are added to make sure there is still room for adult teeth. Once the adult teeth come in, however, they don’t always come in straight. Braces can correct tooth alignment, gaps, and even over- or underbites by putting slight but steady pressure on the teeth.

Young Adults

Another common dental procedure for young adults is wisdom tooth extraction. It is important to have wisdom teeth checked by a dentist, so they can assess the situation before the teeth erupt and cause problems such as overcrowding or misalignment.

Adults

Adults see the dentist for many of the same services that children get. When the dentist takes x-rays, they are more likely to show a little more wear than before.

Root canals are common, where the pulp inside the tooth is carefully removed and sterilized. These treatments bring immediate relief. What is left behind is then filled with a biocompatible material, sealed, and usually, a crown is placed over it to protect the remaining part of the tooth.

To keep that healthy-looking smile, many adults choose to undergo tooth whitening, get veneers or choose another smile makeover procedure.

Pregnancy can cause gingivitis and an increased risk of tooth decay. Some women may be encouraged to have more frequent check-ups while pregnant to alleviate bleeding gums due to changes in hormones and maintain good oral health.

Routine cancer examinations also begin in the adult years. This includes checking for lumps or irregularities inside the mouth or around the head and neck.

Seniors

Senior citizens benefit from many of the same treatments as their younger counterparts, such as digital x-rays, fluoride rinses, and cancer examinations.

Some seniors experience reduced mobility and dexterity, making oral hygiene practices difficult, so regular dental check-ups are important to prevent the build-up of plaque and potential periodontitis.

Tooth decay is more likely to occur in older adults, and some seniors may experience gum recession or even tooth loss. Bridges, crowns, implants, and dentures are common cosmetic treatments in this age group providing seniors with a healthy and bright smile.

Dental treatments for seniors are more important than ever, not only for aesthetic reasons but to improve health. Gum problems that aren’t treated can worsen chronic health problems like rheumatism, stroke and heart disease, and diabetes.

No matter your age, regular dental check-ups, and good oral hygiene practices are essential for a great smile and your overall health. Contact us to schedule your appointment today.

After graduating from the journalism school of the University of Maryland, Theresa began to gain interest in writing topics regarding the medical field after observing specific health patterns in her family history. Theresa recently quit her full-time job and left her home in D.C. to move to Medellin, Colombia to pursue remote work. Today, she professionally writes about dentistry, VA hospitals, alternative medicine, and other health-related matters.