Dental hygiene visits consist of a dental exam, cleaning, flossing of teeth, application of fluoride and additional diagnostic aids such as radiographs when prescribed by the dentist. The indication for sealants to be placed will also be discussed at this appointment if appropriate for your child.
The most common dental hygiene visit interval is recommended every 6 months. This interval frequency is based on your child’s risk assessment and a high caries risk may require more frequent visits. At this time the dentist will discuss the needs of your child with you and answer all questions.
FLUORIDE: Fluoride, a naturally occurring mineral, is essential for proper tooth development and the prevention of tooth decay. In communities throughout the United States, tooth decay may still be a significant problem — but it is far less prevalent than it would have been, if not for the fluoridation of public water supplies. That’s why the major associations of pediatric dentists and doctors support water fluoridation to the current recommended levels of 0.70 parts per million (ppm). It’s also why the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has called fluoridated water one of the most significant health achievements of the 20th century.
Of course, not everyone has access to fluoridated water. That’s one reason why we sometimes recommend a fluoride supplement for your child and/or the use of toothpastes and other products that contain this important mineral. Because it is possible for children to get too much fluoride, it is best to consult with us on the use of any fluoride-containing product.
SEALANTS: Dental sealants are thin plastic coatings that are applied to the grooves on the chewing surfaces of the back teeth to protect them from tooth decay. Most tooth decay in children and teens occur on these surfaces. Sealants protect the chewing surfaces from tooth decay by keeping germs and food particles out of these grooves. Applying sealants does not require drilling or removing tooth structure.