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June 4, 2019

Is Tooth Decay the Most Common Childhood Disease?

Tooth decay is more common in childhood than more parents realize. We, at Jet Set Smiles Pediatric Dentistry, would like to emphasize the importance of preventive dental care to ensure your child enjoys a healthy smile for a lifetime. While childhood decay can cause complications, the good news is that it is a preventable and treatable illness. We are here to help!

 

How Does Tooth Decay Develop

 

Children love snacking on sugary treats and starches. If their teeth are not cleaned after eating these foods, bacteria starts a feeding frenzy, which results in plaque, a clear sticky film, building up on the teeth and gums. The acid in the plaque begins to attack the tooth enamel, resulting in tooth decay. If left untreated, tooth decay continues to progress, eventually reaching the tooth pulp, which can cause tooth pain and may potentially require a root canal.

 

Is Tooth Decay the Most Common Childhood Disease?

 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that, although largely preventable, dental caries continues to be the most common chronic disease of children aged 6 to 11 and adolescents aged 12 to 19 years. Decay is also prevalent in adults with more than 90 percent of adults over the age of 20 suffering from some degree of tooth root decay.

 

Why Are More Children Developing Tooth Decay?

 

Children are drawn to sweets and starches, and today they have more access to junk food and processed sweets than ever before. Many children neglect to brush their teeth after eating, making them more susceptible to tooth decay. Busy parents often opt to buy fast food than dinner, and children have more in a say in what they eat. All these factors combined contribute to the rise in childhood tooth decay.

 

Preventive Dentistry for Healthy Teeth

 

At Jet Set Smiles, we believe that preventive dental care is the foundation of a healthy mouth. We encourage you to bring your child in to see us every six months, no later than the first birthday. During your visit, we will examine your child’s teeth and gums and ensure they are healthy. Your child will also have a professional cleaning during which we will remove any plaque and tartar buildup. Keeping your child’s mouth clean will help keep tooth decay at bay.

We may also recommend preventive treatments to help protect your child’s teeth. These include fluoride application, which strengthens your child’s teeth and makes them less susceptible to decay, and dental sealants, which are clear protective coatings we apply to to the chewing surfaces of the back teeth.

 

Preventive Care at Home

 

Begin to establish an oral hygiene care regimen from a young age. Encourage your child to brush at least twice daily, and to floss every day. Your child should consume a balanced, nutritious diet, and should limit snacking on sugary treats.

 

 

Quality Preventive Care Starts Here

 

We, at Jet Set Smiles Pediatric Dentistry, are passionate about our young patients’ dental health. We are here to answer your questions and to offer advice on how to best care for your child’s teeth. We look forward to working alongside you to help ensure your child enjoys healthy smiles for a lifetime. Call us today!