Category: Teeth Maintenance

Category: Teeth Maintenance

Space Maintainers And Their Types

Space Maintainers And Their Types

In the last post, we learnt about the need for space “maintainers”. There are different designs of space maintainers and the decision to choose a particular design is based on:

  1. the number of teeth missing,
  2. the number of teeth present in the mouth and
  3. the number of years remaining for the permanent teeth to erupt.

If only a single tooth is missing, we can go for a fairly simple design called a “band and loop”. This is very stable and easy to maintain.

If multiple teeth from both sides are missing, we may have to give a slightly sturdier design so that space in both sides of the mouth may be maintained

Generally constructed with stainless steel wire, these space maintainers may be made of acrylic also. Teeth can be set in the base so that your child may be able to chew properly. Removable varieties are available, although majority parents and practitioners prefer fixed type. Children are very unpredictable, right?

Space maintainers can also transform your child’s smile and boost their confidence! If there is no other option but to extract, space maintenance is MANDATORY. After all, a stitch in time saves nine..


Space “Maintainers”- What, Why, How, When?

Space “Maintainers”- What, Why, How, When?

Earlier, dentistry used to be synonymous with “extraction” of badly decayed teeth. Especially in children. The idea was that milk teeth are going to be replaced anyway, so why not just remove it. But what if I told you that the thinking has changed now? The permanent teeth especially in the back of the mouth do not erupt till 10-12 years of age and keeping an empty space in those areas till that age is not good.

So, what happens if the milk tooth has to be removed pretty early on?

  1. The permanent tooth developing underneath is not ready to come out… So, the back teeth may “tilt” into this space
  2. Once the back teeth tilt, space available for the other teeth reduces
  3. At age 10, the permanent teeth are crowded/ stuck and arranged wherever there is a little space- Braces will definitely be required to align

What can be done, then?

  1. Space maintainers are given immediately after extraction of the milk teeth.
  2. These will be in place till the permanent teeth are ready to erupt and prevent loss of space.
  3. The probability/ duration of orthodontic treatment reduces at a later age.

What are the uses of a full mouth X-ray?

Often, we advise the parent to take a full mouth X-Ray called an OPG or Orthopantomogram.

More often, we get this question in return- “Doctor, but why this? Why can’t we go for the small film?”

So let us have a look at the innumerable uses of OPG:

1. OPGs are extremely useful, especially in children. This is because we can see the status of both the milk teeth and permanent teeth in the child’s mouth. So, we can see if all the teeth are erupting in the right track or there is some delay.

2. If there is some delay in development, we can easily see the cause for it. It may be some infection or tooth may be rotated or there might be some obstruction blocking it.

3.In a child who is very anxious, these are the best because the film is outside the mouth unlike the other type where we have to hold film inside the poor child’s mouth!

4. Not just the teeth, it is possible to see the status of the bones of the jaw and the nose also. Basically any fracture/ breathing problems can be evaluated.

5. Lastly, and the most common reason- cavities! If your child has multiple teeth with “holes”, it is better to take a full mouth X-Ray and see all the teeth in one single film.

For further clarifications, contact your Dentist today.


How useful are X-rays to see a fractured tooth?

We always get this question. “Aren’t X-rays harmful?” or “Does it have any side effects on the brain?”

Well, to answer this question, it is important to know what “natural background radiation” is. This is basically the radiation we receive on a daily basis from the environment.

And the doses from intraoral and full mouth radiographs are lower, less than one day of natural background radiation.

Does that answer the question?

Also, consider the benefits of taking a small X-Ray especially when there is a broken tooth involved. We can:

1. Give emergency treatment :

  1. Visualize the extent of fracture, and that helps us in planning the treatment.
  2. If the tooth pieces are loose, we can also use X ray to confirm we have repositioned the tooth in the correct manner

2. Monitor the tooth:

  1.  See if there is any developing infection
  2. Check if the tooth root is formed nicely or not. In young children with newly erupted teeth, the root may not be formed completely. In such a case, we use a calcium rich material called MTA to seal the root.

3. Monitor the treatment:

Monitor the treatment given to see if the filling is in the correct place and the body is accepting the treatment.

Clearly there are more benefits and is a must, especially in cases of traumatic injuries!


Safety of Dental X-ray in Children

Safety of Dental X-ray in Children

All types of dental x-rays used in modern dentistry are now in digital mode. Normal x-ray radiation is about 1/10th of what is used in regular conventional x-rays.

So it is very safe to expose dental x-rays for children. Protective layer like lead apron and thyroid collar makes it even safer.

Commonly used x-ray is small x-rays called IOPA and the large x-ray is called OPG (Orthopantomograph).

Bite wing is a type of x-ray used to detect cavity in between the teeth.  

BITE WING

Even in normal children, complete evaluation of teeth and surrounding structure is mandatory at the age of six years to evaluate progress of teeth eruption, falling of teeth, pressure of permanent tooth inside the oral cavity, any future alignment issues, cavity problems, any extra teeth apart from the regular 32 teeth, absence of permanent toothy, any different type of growth or swelling inside the bone should be a evaluated.

This is a mandatory protocol in western countries like US, UK and Australia.


PARENT’S ROLE IN CHILD’S ORAL HEALTH

PARENT’S ROLE IN CHILD’S ORAL HEALTH

In the present buzzy life, the importance of parents role in developing good oral health of the children is often neglected or minimal quality is time is being spent for educating and motivating the kids for good oral hygiene. Changes in the dietary pattern have already made an adverse effect in the oral health of upcoming generation. Frequent exposures to the sugar containing food, either packed or homemade is becoming unavoidable. So parent’s role in the child oral health is mandatory.

Educational points for parents

Child teeth start developing at the first six months. So a good healthy diet is necessary for proper growth.

Next the first permanent tooth erupts at the age of 6, which is the ideal age for a check up to your paediatric dentist? Making a visit once to paediatric dentist marks the milestone in the good oral care of child.

During 6-12 years, the milk teeth will fall and the permanent tooth will start erupting so this is a crucial age for monitoring the dental chart for teeth eruption. Visiting your paediatric dentist 6 months once will ensure the proper oral health care.

Here are some simple tips to guide your children oral health.                           

Tips

Be an example

Instead of asking children to brush twice, make them accompany with parents while they brush in day and night time. This has a significant memory impact on the children. They tend to follow it for rest of their life time.

Tell, show, do

It is a simple technique as the name implies. Tell them how to brush, show them brushing and do along with them. Flossing can be done after the age of 12.

Digital media

In todays world everything is available in the digital media such as animated brushing technique and flossing technique etc. A visual experience makes them get more involved.

Educating

 Making the children aware of the adverse effects of poor oral heath such as early childhood caries, gum diseases will make them realize the maintenance of good oral health.

Paediatric dental visit

A consultation from your paediatric dentist will always give you the knowledge of proper brushing & flossing technique. Every child teeth has a story to tell. Paediatric dentist will make a complete check up on your child’s oral health.

Cost versus benefit ratio of preventive versus therapeutic care in pediatric dentistry stands at 1:40. So every one rupee spent at preventive assessment helps a long way in avoiding therapeutic care at the cost of forty rupees.

So, it is our Kidz ‘n’ Teenz duty to bring awareness to the public.


Space Maintainers

Space Maintainers

A primary tooth is sometimes lost prematurely because of injury or tooth decay. If that happens before the permanent tooth is fully developed and ready to emerge; the nearby teeth can shift or “tip” into the space formerly occupied by the primary tooth. When the permanent tooth tries to grow into the spot, there may not be enough room. The new teeth may be unerupt or emerge lopsided, leading to crooked teeth.

A space maintainer holds the space left by a primary tooth until the permanent teeth is ready to emerge. Generally it is the device that is permanently cemented in the mouth. The paediatric dentist will later remove the spacer once the permanent tooth is in its proper position.

Different types of space maintainers are used for children are:

1. Band and loop space maintainers

2. Lingual arch space maintainers for lower teeth

3. Nance arch holding appliance etc.,

The type of space maintainers for that particular tooth or teeth is at the discretion of the pediatric dentist to decide.


Parental role in children’s oral health

Parental role in children’s oral health

One of the most important things we adults can do for young children is to model the kind of person we would like them to be – Carol B Hillman

Oral health is an integral part of the general health. Oral diseases are the most common and wide spread problem throughout the world, among that dental caries is the biggest one. Oral health related habits are established in early life.

The role of parent during child’s earliest years is a biggest influence in shaping their personality.

Child upbringing is one of the most formidable tasks of parents such as tooth brushing habits are important which will influence in their young age. So, promoting the knowledge and attitude about oral health maintenance in adults are very important, because this will influence the oral health of children at early age.

Most of the parents tend to ignore their children’s dental problem because the primary teeth will be replaced by permanent teeth and also because they are unaware of the causes of Early Childhood Caries and their treatment. So, parent’s contribution in this will lead to increased preventive dental care, which children will receive at home and use of professional dental care.

Parents have to use playful motivation to enhance their child’s brushing. Till six years it is advisable to parents to re-brush those areas which are hard to clean. At the age around 6, children are able to brush their own and can use proper technique. Although child can do, still it is advisable to the parents to continue their supervising in regular brushing.


IMPORTANCE OF COLOURS IN PEDIATRIC DENTAL CLINIC

Colour plays a vitally important role in the world in which we live. Colour can tilt thinking, modify actions, and cause reactions. On the other hand, it can irritate or soothe your eyes, raise your blood pressure or suppress your appetite. If the colour used in the right ways, it can even save on energy consumption.

COLOURS IN A PEDIATRIC DENTAL CLINIC

Parents usually scare their children before coming to a dentist as they will put an injection which tends children to develop subjective fear on the dentist.

How do colours come into play?

There are certain psychological findings that some of the colours stabilize the mood swings in children.

Colours such as yellow and pink have some significant feature on influencing one’s mind.

Yellow

  • This is a colour of optimism.
  • It stimulates the left brain helping with clear thinking and decision making.
  • It is used to relax, energize and enhance positive mood.

Pink

  • It is a colour of sensitivity.
  • It is associated with tenderness and nurturing while conveying a sense of safety.
  • It is used to communicate energy, increase pulse, motivate action, and encourage creativity.

PINK COLOURED COAT

CHILDREN FRIENDLY DESIGN

In our clinic we have inculcated colour concepts in every aspect such as doctor’s apron which is usually white but we have a pink coloured coat to eliminate fear in children

Infrastructure of clinic and equipment has the same theme.

DENTAL CHAIRS

COLOR THEMED INSTRUMENTS


How to prevent caries?

  1. Brush twice a day quickly and effectively
  2. Do flossing/ interdental brush based on the space between teeth.
  3. Use fluoride containing mouthwash and toothpaste, if you are prone to caries.
  4. Avoid sugary and sticky food. In case of sugar consumption brush your teeth preferably after every meal.
  5. Drink lots of water and fluoride containing beverages.
  6. Eat crunchy, bright coloured and fibre containing foods like carrot, celery, apple, nuts, sprouts, bran, etc.
  7. Certain foods like cheese, milk, yogurt, seafood are known to prevent caries.
  8. Chew non sugary gums often because it increases your salivary flow.
  9. Avoid frequent snacking as it exposes your teeth to constant bacterial attack.
  10. Visit your dentist every 6 month to make sure no caries develop by applying sealants and fluoride varnishes. Give proper attention to any cavities in the beginning to avoid any pain or discomfort later