February 22nd, 2023
We see many children as young as 1 year of age already having cavities in their mouth! Your child may have cavities starting in their teeth before it becomes a hole in their tooth. Cavities start as white spot lesions that become large and cavitated as the cavity gets worse (this is when you would usually see holes in the teeth).
Cavities are one of the most common chronic conditions of childhood in the United States. In Los Angeles County, 50% of kindergarteners have untreated cavities! Cavities are 5 times more common than asthma and 7 times more common than hay fever!
So what can we do to prevent cavities?
1) Brush 2x/day with fluoridated toothpaste for 2 minutes each time
2) Floss at least 1x/day
3) Avoid sugary foods and drinks in excess, especially crackers, chips, and juice
4) Visit the dentist at least 2x/year
Cavities are completely preventable and we believe that early detection is key! Making sure your child sees a dentist regularly will help your child's dentist identify any teeth that are starting cavities before they get worse. We are always here for you!
December 7th, 2020
As children start losing their baby teeth and their new adult teeth come in, a lot of parents ask, "why are their new teeth yellow?" and "is this something we should be worried about?" These are great questions! First off, this is definitely nothing to worry about! Adult teeth are naturally more yellow in color than baby teeth, and here are the reasons why:
- Every tooth is made up of layers: an outer 'white' layer (enamel), an inner 'yellow' layer (dentin), and the innermost layer containing blood vessels and nerves (pulp). Baby teeth and adult teeth look different based on the amount of thickness of the layers of enamel and dentin!
- Baby teeth have thin layers of dentin, meaning less of the 'yellow' layer. The enamel in baby teeth is also more opaque, making it harder to see the yellow layer through the white. All of this together makes baby teeth look super bright and white!
- Adult teeth have a thicker dentin layer, meaning more 'yellow.' The enamel is also semi-translucent, allowing the yellow color underneath to show through more easily. This allows adult teeth to be more yellow in color.
One last question you may have is: "can we do anything about the yellow teeth?"
- We don't recommend teeth whitening in office or at home whitening kits for young children. These products can make teeth extremely sensitive and uncomfortable for your child.
- Also, if your child has a mixture of baby teeth and adult teeth currently in the mouth, there are still more adult teeth to come in to replace those baby teeth. If you choose to whiten teeth at this time, the new set of adult teeth coming in will be a different color - you won't be able to specifically whiten the new teeth to match the old ones!
- Once a child has all of their adult teeth in their late teenage years, we can go over different safe methods of whitening their teeth to reduce the chances of sensitivity and to keep their teeth healthy.
So are yellow teeth bad? Not at all! We always want to emphasize the importance of strong and healthy teeth is by not having any cavities - not the color of the teeth. Having white teeth doesn't always mean a tooth is healthy!
October 28th, 2020
What greater way to celebrate Halloween than with tasty and healthy snacks? This is a fun recipe to do with your child that's interactive and yummy!
Monster Apple Bites
- 2 Apples - any color of your choice! (We chose green apples).
- 1/4 cup of nut butter - any butter of your choice if your child is allergic to nuts! (We chose peanut butter).
- 1/4 cup of seeds - any seed of your choice that look like teeth! (We chose pumpkin seeds, but you can also use sunflower seeds).
- 2-3 strawberries
- Handful of sugar googly eyes - these are available for purchase from the bakery aisle
- Quarter each apple to create the monster. Cut the middle out of the slice to create a mouth - doesn't need to be perfect because you'll be filling in the gap with your nut butter!
- Coat the inside of the "mouth" with the nut butter.
- Place seeds along the top of the "mouth" to make teeth.
- Place 1 sliced strawberry inside of the "mouth" to create a tongue.
- Dab each googly eye with a bit of nut butter to stick the eyes to the apple slice.
- Ta-da! Monster apples!
Hope this brings your child happy smiles on Halloween!
October 15th, 2020
You may not know, but dentists can have a sweet tooth too! We love sweets just as much as you do, so with Halloween coming up, we wanted to give you tips on how to continue to take care of your teeth during this sugary holiday!
Candy that are "tooth-friendly" are candy that quickly leave the mouth and are not sticky! Chocolate is the best "tooth-friendly" type of sweet! It enters the mouth and leaves the teeth really fast as it melts away.
Candy that are not as "tooth-friendly" are candy that are sticky. These types of candy stay in the mouth for a long time! They stick really tight to the chewing surfaces of teeth and can potentially cause cavities. We want to avoid too much of gummy bears, gummy worms, taffy, and caramels.
The most important thing is to eat sweets in moderation. Keep your child's candy in a place that is not visible. Having candy out in the open and easily accessible will increase the amount of times your child will want to have that candy. Also, give candy as a special treat, not as a type of food they eat on a daily basis.
And of course, don't forget to brush your child's teeth! Remember to brush two times a day, two minutes each time.
We hope everyone has a safe and healthy Halloween, and keep your teeth shiny and clean!