Paediatric Dentistry – These Are the Leading Dental Issues in Children
As a parent, you want to do your best to ensure that your children are healthy and fit. This means regular visits to your paediatrician, but it also means regular visits to the dentist as well. If you are covered by the Child Dental Benefits Schedule (CDBS), the Australian government has probably sent you an informative letter. It is good to keep in mind that not all dentists agree to payments from CDBS.
If you want a bulk billing dentist for your children’s dental needs, it is imperative that you check first before scheduling an appointment. Until you find a bulk billing dentist contracted with the CDBS, it is good to watch for any signs of dental distress in your children. These are some of the common dental issues in children to be aware of.
Prevention is always the best remedy to tooth decay but if your child should suddenly develop a toothache, you can almost always trace it to dental decay. Your child may be eligible for X-rays and dental exams under the CDBS, but dental fillings and/or extractions will probably be covered as well. If it’s a primary tooth (baby tooth) then extracting it might be the easiest solution since it will be coming out shortly anyway. Even so, your dentist will advise you after having examined the tooth and X-rays as to what he or she recommends as the best treatment for your child.
Many children suck their thumbs as a way to self-soothe. Along with their favourite stuffed animals and baby blankets, thumb sucking stands right up there in the ranks of best ways kids seek to comfort themselves. They feel secure with their favourite blankie and critter, but thumb sucking is nature’s way of giving kids a feeling of bonding with mom – even when they’ve weaned off the bottle or breast. It can cause unnatural growth of the teeth as well as inserting bacteria in the mouth which can lead to tooth decay. Talk to your dentist about ways to help your children stop this potentially unhealthy behaviour.
Gum disease is usually the result of poor dental hygiene. If you haven’t done so already, do take time to instruct your children on the appropriate way to brush and rinse their teeth at least 3 times daily. Also, if you notice that your child has inordinately bad breath, you can probably assume they have some acute gum disease going on in there as well. If they are in pain, take them to the dentist. If not, monitor their dental hygiene until you notice a marked difference in their breath.
Primary Teeth Over-Retained
Another common issue among children is baby teeth that refuse to fall out! While your child may be anxiously waiting to lose another tooth so that the tooth fairy will pay them another nocturnal visit, that stubborn tooth just won’t budge! This can create a problem for incoming teeth which will seek to re-route around the obstacle. Will this mean braces in the future? It just might well do so! Always keep an eye on your children’s dental health because they simply can’t tell you what’s wrong many times.
Start teaching your children as young as possible to avoid dental issues in the future. A regular visit to the dentist will give mum and dad a report card on how well they’ve done as teachers. With the availability of bulk billing CDBS dentists, there’s no reason not to have your covered check-ups at least annually. One day, your children will thank you for your diligence even if they rebel today!