A pediatric dentist is a dental specialist who works with children from infancy through adolescence. A pediatric dentist is both an educator and a practitioner; therefore, they receive additional training outside of dentistry school to strengthen their knowledge of children’s emotional and developmental needs. They also receive child psychology training, allowing them to connect with…
Fluoride Rinses at Your Child’s Pediatric Dentistry Visit
Pediatric dentists specialize in oral health care for toddlers, children and adolescent patients. When the patient is a toddler or a young child, a pediatric dentist typically only requires a quick examination of the existing teeth and a simple hand-held toothbrush cleaning. However, as children get older, their dental care becomes more important, which is why fluoride rinses become necessary.
Fluoride rinses in pediatric dentistry may sound intimidating to parents; however, there is nothing to fear. Fluoride is an important mineral that keeps teeth strong and healthy. Pediatric dentists do not use the same type of fluoride that adults use in a general dentistry setting. Instead, the solution is diluted, which makes it not as strong and ensures it is safe for children. Below is an overview of fluoride rinse as it pertains to pediatric dentistry. This information can be helpful to review when preparing children for an upcoming dental visit.
Understanding fluoride rinses in pediatric dentistry
Fluoride rinses defined
Fluoride rinses in pediatric dentistry are very simple. Children are given a small amount of a liquid solution that contains fluoride. The pediatric dentist will tell the child to hold the solution in their mouth for 30 seconds to two minutes, depending on the strength of the solution and the age of the child. After swishing it around, the child can spit the rinse out.
Not every pediatric dentistry visit will include fluoride rinsing. However, it is should be done twice a year or during routine check-up appointments. As a child grows older, the strength of the fluoride solution may be increased to ensure the appropriate mineralization of the teeth. Other fluoride options may be available, such as gel application.
What is the need for fluoride in pediatric dentistry?
Fluoride rinses are needed in pediatric dentistry because they keep children's teeth strong and mineralized. Baby teeth, especially, are at high risk of developing cavities and weak spots. Children often consume a lot of sugar and do not always practice the best oral hygiene, which leads to unhealthy teeth. A way that pediatric dentists try to combat this is by regularly applying fluoride. Fluoride strengthens the enamel and makes it more durable, which is critical, as enamel is responsible for protecting the inner layers of teeth.
Other things to note
While fluoride rinses are almost always recommended in pediatric dentistry, it is important to understand that adults also require it on a regular basis. Additionally, it is good to know that children who do not undergo fluoride treatment in a pediatric dentistry setting are at higher risk of developing weak teeth over time.
Find out more today
When looking for further information about fluoride rinses in pediatric dentistry, it is always best to consult a professional. A pediatric dentist will be happy to discuss the importance of fluoride for children. To learn more or to get started with an appointment, reach out today; any questions or concerns can be appropriately addressed.
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