Friday, September 15, 2017

Diabetes and Bad Breath

Diabetes and Bad Breath

A child with type 1 diabetes presents special challenges to a parent. Maintaining your child’s proper blood sugar levels through diet is likely your primary concern. But maintaining your child’s oral health should also be high on the list, not only because diabetes can lead to cavities and periodontal disease but also because it can cause bad breath.

When there is too little insulin in the blood or when insulin resistance is too high, the body utilizes fats instead of glucose to provide energy. That process produces ketones, an acidic waste product that can be excreted on the breath.

High sugar levels in the blood can also lead to high sugar levels in saliva. Because bacteria thrive in high-sugar environments, people with diabetes are much more prone to cavities and periodontal disease, which also can cause bad breath.

If your child has diabetes, it is important that you be extra vigilant about his or her blood sugar regulation and dental care so that the diabetes does not lead to bad breath and other dental conditions. To maintain a healthy mouth, we recommend the following tips for your child:
  • Brush the teeth at least twice a day, and floss once a day.
  • Brush the tongue as well, because it is a breeding place for bacteria.
  • Drink plenty of water.
  • Eat a healthy diet with few sugary foods and drinks.
  • Visit us regularly.

If your child has type 1 diabetes, be sure to let our office know so that we can provide him or her with optimal dental care. Between visits at KiDDS Dental, it is also important that you and your child remain focused on dental hygiene. Together, we can prevent many of the oral conditions associated with diabetes so that your child maintains a healthy mouth as he or she grows into adulthood.

If you have further questions about diabetes and bad breath, click here to schedule an appointment with Dr. Jared. Or give us a call at (509)-891-7070.

Friday, September 1, 2017

Devour Some Good Children’s Books About Oral Health

Devour Some Good Children’s Books About Oral Health

Reading to children is important for a myriad of reasons, but there’s one you may not have thought about: promoting dental health. Dental caries (tooth decay) is actually the most common infectious disease affecting children in the United States. Cavities in baby teeth can affect dental health for a lifetime, and getting fillings can have painful—and financial—consequences. The best way to help your children avoid dental problems is to make sure they practice good oral hygiene from a very early age.
Picture books are a great way to bring oral health concepts to life. They can help explain the whys and hows of teeth to young children. Some books focus on proper brushing technique, such as Brushing Well by Helen Frost; Brush Your Teeth, Please by Leslie McGuire; and Ready, Set, Brush! featuring the characters from Sesame Street. Author Sally Huss’ Who Needs Teeth? focuses more on the importance of teeth, while other books like Sugarbug Doug by dentist Ben Magleby describe in child-friendly terms how cavities happen.
New experiences can be scary for children, and going to the dentist for the first time is no exception. Sharing stories with your child about dental visits can help demystify the process and may even get him or her excited about going. A number of your children’s favorite characters have books on this topic, such as the Berenstain Bears, Curious George, Dora the Explorer and Mercer Mayer’s Little Critter. If your child does get a cavity, you can prepare her or him for what’s to come with Lisa M. Herrington’s I Have a Cavity.
For older children, losing primary teeth can be a big deal. Help prepare them with titles such as Loose Tooth by Lola M. Schaefer and The Night Before the Tooth Fairy by Natasha Wing. School-age children may also enjoy The Tooth Book by Edward Miller, which takes a more science-oriented (but still fun) approach to teaching dental health.

By sharing these books and others like them with your youngsters, you can give them a solid foundation in dental health—and maybe discover some favorite stories along the way.
We'd love to meet you and your family! Give us a call at (509)-891-7070.

Friday, August 18, 2017

Dental Needs of Your Child with a Hearing Impairment

Dental Needs of Your Child with a Hearing Impairment
Of every 1,000 children born in the United States, between two and three have a detectable level of hearing loss in one or both ears. If your child has a hearing impairment, you know that medical and dental appointments can be a challenge. As dental professionals trained to deal with many special health care needs, we are committed to providing the best dental care possible, tailored to your child’s unique needs and abilities.
When you bring your child in for an appointment at KiDDS Dental, we will first assess speech, language ability and the degree of hearing impairment, so that we can best communicate with your child. We will also eliminate background noise to help us communicate with your child to the best of his or her abilities. If your child reads lips, we will remove our masks when speaking.
When preparing to perform a dental procedure, we will employ the tell–show–do approach, explaining and showing your child what we are going to do so there are no surprises. Dr. Jared and his clinical team want your child to understand what dental equipment we will use and how we will use it before treatment begins―that helps make your child feel more comfortable and relaxed during the procedure.
Children with hearing impairments may also have special dental needs, which we can assess and treat. They are more likely to breathe through their mouths―that can lead to increased risks of dry mouth, dental cavities and gum disease. Studies have shown that dental hygiene education tailored to children with hearing impairments improves their dental hygiene and health. That makes it especially important for these children to receive frequent preventive care and adhere to a regular regimen of dental hygiene.
When you schedule an appointment at KiDDS Dental, let us know that your child has difficulty hearing. Regardless of your child’s special health care needs and challenges, we are equipped and committed to ensuring that he or she has the healthiest smile possible. 

Give us a call at 509-891-7070 to schedule.

Friday, August 4, 2017

Dental Injuries and ADHD

Dental Injuries and ADHD

The causes of dental trauma—injuries to the teeth and mouth area—traditionally have been classified by a child’s oral developmental stage. Injuries to a child’s baby teeth tend to occur from falls and accidents related to the fact that the child is still learning to walk and run, and hasn’t yet fully developed his senses of balance and space. During the time period when baby teeth are being replaced with permanent teeth (transitional dentition), accidents are more likely to result from outdoor activities such as running and bicycling. But falls are still a major factor during this period, with some studies suggesting that falls account for up to 40% of all dental injuries in the transitional dentition.

Attention deficit/hyperactivity disorders (ADHD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder that may become apparent before age 7. Children with ADHD often demonstrate poor impulse control, hyperactivity and inattentiveness. Since accidents and falls are the most frequent cause of dental trauma in children, it seems logical that children suffering from ADHD could be more prone to dental trauma than are their peers.

A recent study conducted at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio, compared a group of children each of whom a history of recent dental trauma with a group of children without dental trauma. The children’s parents completed the ADHD Rating Scale IV, a form that evaluates children for ADHD and its two component parts: (1) inattention and (2) hyperactivity and impulsiveness.

Interestingly, based on the rating scale, both groups of children averaged similar scores for ADHD and for inattention. However, the group of children with dental trauma scored significantly higher for hyperactivity and impulsiveness.

Children with ADHD are more at risk than other children for cavities and are more likely to grind their teeth. And these children’s behavioral issues can make visits to KiDDS Dental more difficult for the child and the parent. Parents of children with ADHD should make sure their children use seat belts, bike helmets and mouth guards to help minimize the chances of dental trauma. And they should foster an early and trusting relationship between their child and his dentist.

Click here to schedule an appointment with Dr. Jared today! Or give us a call at (509)-891-7070.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Dental Hygiene: A Bone of Contention

Dental Hygiene: A Bone of Contention

When people think about their dentists, they tend to think only about their teeth and gums. Most people don’t think about their bones. It’s very easy to think of your teeth as little bones that grow out of your gums, but when we talk about bone loss, we aren’t just talking about tooth decay. We are talking about your child’s jawbone and skull.

Every part of the body is connected. Just as the leg bone is connected to the hipbone, the jawbone and skull are connected to the teeth and gums. Poor dental hygiene can cause harmful acids and bacteria to build up not just on your children’s teeth and gums but in the jawbone and skull, causing them to wear away. Your children’s teeth live in little holes in those bones. If those holes get eaten away and become too big, your children’s teeth can loosen or even fall out.

Another preventable cause of bone loss is osteoporosis, a weakness of the bones caused by a lack of calcium. While this condition is uncommon in children, childhood diet may influence osteoporosis later in life. The best way to prevent osteoporosis and a good piece of health advice in general, is to ensure that your child has a diet rich in calcium and vitamin D. It’s never too early to reduce the risk of developing this very serious condition later in life.

Certain conditions such as cancer and autoimmune diseases can cause bone loss; so can certain medical treatments. It’s important to let us know at KiDDS Dental when your children have significant changes in their health or if they are taking new medications. Dr. Jared knows the best ways to mitigate the effect of these changes on their teeth.

Bone loss is a serious problem, but one that can be effectively fought.

Give us a call at (509)-891-7070 to schedule today!

Friday, July 7, 2017

Dental Health Screenings Important for Children

Dental Health Screenings Important for Children

A dental health screening is a brief examination of your child’s teeth, gums, tongue and soft tissue of the mouth performed to identify abnormal conditions so the child can come to the dental office for treatment. Screenings should occur regularly after the first tooth has erupted.

A dental screening by someone other than a dentist—often first performed in the pediatrician’s office—is usually the first dental care a child receives. These screenings are usually performed by a dental hygienist, pediatrician, nurse or physician’s assistant. People who serve at-risk children are often trained to screen the mouths and teeth of young children. Some states require proof of a dental screening before a child can enroll in school.

Dental health screenings help to identify tooth decay, infected gums and other oral problems. While 89% of America’s one-year-old children have had an office-based physician visit, only 1.5% of the same aged children have visited a dental office.

A dental health screening consists of three parts. The screener first inquires about the child’s dental health history. This is followed by a brief physical examination of the child’s mouth. Finally, the screener will offer a referral to a dentist for preventive care and treatment.

Common problems spotted during a dental health screening include
  • baby bottle tooth decay
  • cavities—28% of children age five and under have one or more cavities
  • missing or damaged teeth
  • sore, swollen or infected gums

In order for these problems not to worsen and compromise your child’s health and performance in school, they should be treated by their pediatric dentist. Dr. Jared will screen your child in our office or accept referrals from other screeners.

If you have further questions regarding dental health screenings,click here to schedule an appointment with Dr. Jared. Or give us a call at (509)-891-7070.

Friday, June 23, 2017

Dental Checklist: Check Your Child’s Teeth

Dental Checklist: Check Your Child’s Teeth

A lifetime of good dental health starts at birth. In fact, regular dental care should begin by your child’s first birthday, followed by a dental check-up at least twice each consecutive year. This checklist from the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry can help you know the whats, whens and hows of your child’s dental health.

Birth to 6 months old

Even though your baby has a gummy smile, you still need to think about his or her teeth. Clean your infant’s mouth by wiping the gums with a soft piece of gauze after every feeding and at every bedtime. As your baby starts to get on a more regular schedule, implement better feeding habits (i.e., avoid nursing or bottle-feeding throughout the night, and make sure to wipe your baby’s gums after the last feeding of the evening).

6 months old to 2 years old

During this period, your baby will begin teething. Now is a good time to start a dental health routine, brushing after meals and at bedtime with a soft-bristled toothbrush and bringing your child to see us when the first teeth erupt. Because children begin toddling around during the same time these first teeth appear, you also need to be on the lookout for chipped or damaged teeth after your toddler stumbles and falls.

2 years old to 5 and 6 years old

Most children will have their complete first set of teeth by the age of 3 and will begin to lose them to make way for the permanent adult teeth between 5 or 6 years old. Baby (or “deciduous”) teeth play an important role in ensuring future dental health: They hold space for future permanent teeth. Infected baby teeth can cause problems long into adulthood. To keep your child’s smile healthy, see us every six months or as directed, and instill good dental habits in your child. 

Around the age of 12, your child will have his or her full adult smile (aside from wisdom teeth, which come in later). Encourage healthy eating and regular brushing, and see us at KiDDS Dental regularly, so that we—and your child—can keep those teeth pearly white for years to come.

Call us to schedule an appointment today! (509)-891-7070.