A child’s first visit to the dentist should be enjoyable. We are not born with an innate fear of the dentist, but as children and even adults, we fear the unknown. At Wolf Willow Dental Clinic, we want you and your child to feel at ease from the moment you walk in our door. The more you and your child know about his or her first visit, the better.
When Does My Child Need to See a Dentist?
We encourage the assessment of infants, by a dentist, within 6 months of the eruption of the first tooth or by one year of age. The goal of your child’s first visit is to familiarize themselves with our clinic and dentists before there is a problem with their teeth.
When Should I Start a Dental Hygiene Routine With My Child?
As soon the first tooth erupts, you can start brushing lightly with just a wet toothbrush made for babies. You can increase this to a pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste when your child is 3 years old. Brush gently all around your child’s baby teeth—front and back. You should brush your baby’s teeth until he or she is old enough to hold the brush. Continue to supervise the process until your child can rinse and spit without assistance, usually around age 6.
In combination with dental exams, x-rays allow your dentist to diagnose potential oral health issues before they become a problem. Digital x-rays are one of the newest types of radiographs offered at Wolf Willow Dental. With a digital x-ray, captured images go into a computer where they can be viewed on a screen, saved or printed. It is easier to compare and see tiny changes on digital x-rays than on standard x-rays, therefore changes in the mouth can be caught sooner. Digital x-rays also only use about half the radiation of conventional film, making them a safer choice.
All your life you’ve been told to brush and floss regularly. But are you doing it right? Our dentists can educate you on how to maintain a strict schedule of oral hygiene, keeping your teeth and gums healthy.
It is important to brush twice a day, morning and bedtime, with a fluoride toothpaste for at least two minutes. Flossing is equally important and should be done daily, preferably at bedtime.
Step 1: Place your toothbrush at a 45° angle to your gums.
Step 2: Make gentle, circular motions.
Step 3: Brush the inner, outer and chewing surfaces of each tooth.
Step 4: Brush your tongue to remove bacteria.
Step 1: Use approximately 18” of floss. Most of the floss should be wrapped around one finger, with the other finger gathering the floss that is used.
Step 2: Use your thumbs and forefingers to move the floss between your teeth in a sawing motion.
Step 3: Curve the floss against the side of your tooth and gently beneath the gums.
Step 4: Slide the floss up and down. Repeat for each tooth.
Fluorides and Sealants
Fluoride is a mineral that naturally occurs in all water sources. It is best known for its effectiveness in preventing and repairing the early stages of tooth decay. Fluoride strengthens your teeth by absorbing into the enamel and replenishing the lost calcium and phosphorus. This remineralization process hardens your teeth, and in doing so, helps prevent decay.
Wolf Willow Dental offers professional fluoride treatments with each cleaning, applied as a gel, foam or varnish. The fluoride used at our west Edmonton dentist office has a higher strength than over-the-counter mouthwashes or toothpastes.
Another way your dentist can prevent tooth decay is through the application of sealants. Dental sealants are made of a plastic material that is placed on the chewing surface of the permanent molars and premolars. These seals act as extra protection from acid and bacteria left behind by food and plaque. Catching small problems early will give you more treatment options in the long run. Schedule your dental exam today.