It can be difficult to keep routine appointments during the global pandemic. Many dental patients saw their cleanings canceled as restrictions were put in place across the country. Now dental practices have safety regulations in place so they can see patients once again. For young patients with developing teeth, these regular cleanings are crucial to their oral health. Dr. Melissa Elliott, an adult and pediatric dentist near Bel Air, MD, explains the risks involved in continuing to skip your child’s dentist appointment.
Complete essential cleaning
Over time, teeth develop plaque, a film that contains cavity-causing bacteria. This can be removed with proper brushing and flossing, but sometimes it remains in hard-to-reach places. Plaque can harden into tartar, making it even more difficult to clean your teeth effectively. Routine dental cleaning removes the build-up of plaque and tartar so that you can brush better. Dentists recommend scheduling a cleaning every six months. Maintaining a clean and healthy mouth is important for children because their developing teeth need a stable foundation to grow properly. This can avoid costly damage to their teeth as they get older.
Prevent lasting damage
Dental cleanings twice a year remove plaque and tartar that can cause tooth decay, but these routine appointments can prevent other lasting damage to a child’s teeth too. Tartar build-up in the gum line can lead to inflammation and gum disease. Advanced stages of gum disease can cause gum recession, leaving teeth exposed. For teeth that are still developing, this can signify problems in teeth alignment and structure later in life. The dentist can also take other preventative oral health measures, such as fluoride treatment. Fluoride strengthens tooth enamel, making it easier to fight tooth decay.
Children grow quickly, which means their teeth can change rapidly. Regular appointments can allow dentists to monitor these changes to ensure teeth grow and jaws align properly. Any potential issues can be corrected early before teeth have stabilized and are set permanently as in adulthood. Dentists can also keep track of growth through X-rays, which ensures internal structures of teeth and jawbone are healthy. The dentist will also be able to predict future dental concerns, such as wisdom teeth growth, and monitor the issue before it becomes a dental emergency.
Schedule a pediatric dentist appointment near Bel Air, MD
You can see a pediatric or adult dentist at Harford County Dentistry near Bel Air, MD. Dr. Elliott offers general, cosmetic, and restorative dentistry services to patients of all ages. To schedule an appointment with us, contact our office online or reach us by phone at 410.994.2627.