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Why Are X-Rays Important?

Sometimes your child’s pediatric dentist will use X-rays to get a closer look at your child’s teeth. In simple terms, dental x-rays allow dentists to take a detailed picture of the teeth, bones, and soft tissues in your child’s mouth and jaw. In children, X-rays are often used as a preventative measure to allow dentists to foresee any potential issues before they become a larger problem. Dentists need x-rays to see areas of the teeth that are not usually visible to the eye, including the root of the tooth and bones in the jaw.

importance-of-dental-X-rays

What issues can dental X-rays help with?

  • Locate damage to the mouth including injuries to individual teeth and the jaw bones
  • Spot teeth that are not developing in the wrong place or position before they break through the gums
  • Find tumors or abscesses
  • Check the locations of adult teeth in children that currently have baby teeth
  • Plan treatment for large procedures including difficult tooth removals and severe cavities
  • Catch infections that develop under the gums

What happens when my child gets an X-ray?

Dental X-rays are taken in designated areas in our offices. The process is totally painless and usually takes less than five minutes.

  1. Your child’s dentist will encourage them to sit upright before covering their midsection with a lead apron. This lead apron shields your child from X-rays and radiation.
  2. Other dentists in the room will wear a protective mask and stand behind a protective shield.
  3. Your Kids Dental Group dentist will give your child and small piece of plastic to bite on. This plastic holds X-ray film to help get a close-up picture of the teeth.
  4. Your child may want to rinse their mouth after the X-ray is complete.

Are dental X-rays safe?

With today’s digital X-ray equipment and detailed research on radiation safety, safe low-dose X-rays are possible.

In fact, the amount of radiation used during a dental X-ray is so small it won’t affect your child.

Kids Dental Group pediatric dentists follow the follow the ALARA principle, which means “As Low As Reasonably Achievable,” when obtaining radiographs. This principle limits your child’s exposure to radiation.

We’d be happy to answer any questions you have about your child’s X-rays. 

Contact us at our Markham, Richmond Hill or Stouffville location now. We look forward to having you!

Markham (905 294 0995) | Richmond Hill (905 709 3888) | Stouffville (905 642 3642)


Help your kids overcome their fear of dentists

Many children experience anxiety or fear about going to the dentist. Going to the dentist can seem intimidating and uncomfortable, especially for young children. At Kids Dental Group, we are trained to deal with young people and are experienced in treating children that are fearful of the dentist. In our care, your child will feel as safe and comfortable as possible.

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To ease your child’s next visit to the dentist, we suggest the following tips:

Don’t share your fears with your child

It’s no secret that children are easily influenced, especially by parents. Even with the best intentions, sharing your fear of the dentist with your child can cause them to carry those fears into their future appointments.

Be aware of your behaviour, attitude and language when around your kids before and after visiting the dentist. Children will pick up on your anxiety and nervousness, possibly ruining their dentist experience. Help your child have the most positive experience they can by inspiring positive images of the dentist. Teach your child that regular visits to the dentist are a normal part of everyone’s oral health routine, not something to be scared of.

Play pretend

Help your child warm up to the idea of visiting the dentist by playing a pretend dentist game. Allow your child to take on the role of the dentist and “check” your teeth using a mirror. Let them role-play by using a toothbrush and floss on their dolls or stuffed animals. This will allow them to get familiar with the process of visiting the dentist and become comfortable with routine procedures. Additionally, children will understand how they are expected to behave in the dentist’s chair.

Trust your Kids Dental Group pediatrician

Kids Dental Group staff have developed their own proven techniques to help your child get through a difficult experience. Allow your child to become comfortable around their pediatrician by encouraging them to listen closely and engage in conversation. We will gladly walk you and your child through every visit before beginning.

In case your child has complex or sensitive questions, allow your pediatrician to answer them. We know how to describe things to children in an approachable, non-threatening way using simple language.

There’s no need to fear, book your child’s visit to the pediatrician now.

Contact us at our Markham, Richmond Hill or Stouffville location now. We look forward to having you!

Markham (905 294 0995) | Richmond Hill (905 709 3888) | Stouffville (905 642 3642)


How do sports drinks affect your child’s oral health?

sports-drinks-children

What are sports drinks?

The term  “​sports drink​” can include anything from vitamin waters to highly caffeinated energy drinks​. It’s important to distinguish between caffeinated energy drinks and sports drinks, which generally don’t have caffeine.

Sports Drinks vs. Energy Drinks

The caffeine in most energy drinks can cause a variety of health concerns in children. This includes:

● Interference with sleep

● Anxiety and nervousness

● Raised heartbeats

● Headaches

● Difficulty concentrating

● Frequent urination

How do sports drinks work?

Sports drinks, on the other hand, use electrolytes to increase energy. Our bodies use electrolytes to maintain our nerve and muscle function, hydration, muscle repair and blood pressure. When children sweat during exercise, they lose these electrolytes. Additionally, the sodium and sugar in sports drinks replace salt lost in perspiration and keep energy levels up.

Sports drinks can be beneficial, but they should be consumed in moderation. A child needs to have done vigorous exercise (such as cross-country running, skating, soccer, basketball etc.) for an hour before it’s necessary to replenish with a sports drink. Otherwise, the high amounts of sugar can increase the risk of ​weight gain​ and tooth decay. For most children, water is the better option for good oral health and physical wellbeing.

How do sports drinks affect oral health?

The sugar in sports drinks creates unhealthy acids that coat the teeth and build a sticky, damaging deposit called plaque. The bacteria in plaque produces acids that can ruin the protective surface of the tooth, called enamel. Over time, as a result of this damage, tooth decay will occur.

Of all age groups, teens are most heavily affected by tooth decay resulting from sports drinks. After adult teeth have come in, damage to the enamel is irreversible. Without the protective layer of enamel, teeth are prone to increased sensitivity and cavities.

Protecting your child’s teeth from sports drinks

Besides cutting out sports drinks entirely, there are other measures that you can take to protect your child’s oral health:

1. Chew sugar-free gum: Sugar-free gum will help to increase saliva production exponentially. The healthy bacteria in saliva helps to protect the mouth and teeth from damaging sugar and acids.

2. Brush an hour after drinking:  Brushing your teeth after consuming sugary foods is one of the best ways to combat tooth decay. However, children should wait at ​least an hour after consuming sugary drinks before brushing their teeth. Brushing too soon can spread harmful acids into the grooves of the teeth where they are difficult to remove.

As parents, we know that you want you child to succeed in sports, but it is important not to encourage kids to believe they need a sports drink to perform at their best. Be careful not to make sports drinks your child’s go-to source of energy or as a reward for a good performance. Like soda, children can become addicted to the sugar in sports drinks.

The best place for your child to get the necessary nutrients to live an active lifestyle is from balanced meals. Kids that eat natural foods, drink water throughout the day and get enough physical activity, will naturally have energy.

If you are concerned about damage to your child’s teeth from sports drinks, your Kids Dental Group pediatric and orthodontic specialists can advise you on how to proceed.

Contact us at our Markham, Richmond Hill or Stouffville location now. We look forward to having you!

Markham (905 294 0995) | Richmond Hill (905 709 3888) | Stouffville (905 642 3642)


Should I brush my child’s teeth for them?

As your child develops adult teeth, it is especially important to maintain healthy brushing habits. But pushing your child to brush their own teeth before they’re ready is one of the biggest oral healthcare mistakes parents can make. Some children may not be mature enough yet to brush their teeth properly. Your Kids Dental Group pediatric dentists can advise you how to brush your child’s teeth properly until it is time for them to do it on their own.

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Signs that your child’s teeth are not being brushed properly:

  • White film, otherwise known as plaque, covering your child’s teeth
  • Red and swollen gums that could likely be a sign of gingivitis

How to Brush Your Child’s Teeth:

  1. Put a small, pea sized amount of toothpaste on a soft children’s brush.
  1. Stand behind your child and tilt their head slightly backwards, so you can see all the surfaces of your child’s teeth.
  1. Move the brush in gentle circles, angled towards the gums. Be sure to clean both the inner and outer sides of the teeth.
  1. Move the toothbrush back and forth on the chewing surface of the teeth.
  1. After cleaning all of the teeth, gently sweep the the toothbrush downwards on your child’s tongue, being sure not to reach too far back.
  1. Encourage your child to spit out the toothpaste and rise with water.

Signs that kids can brush their teeth on their own:

  1. They have reached the age between 6 to 9: This is typically the age range that children can comfortably transition from having their teeth brushed by their parents, to brushing on their own.
  1. They prove they are responsible: A child that can manage personal responsibilities such as cleaning their rooms or completing homework on on time, can likely take on the responsibility of brushing their teeth twice a day.
  1. They pass your tests: Check your child’s teeth after they are done brushing. Are their teeth and tongue sparkling clean? Gaining your approval is the most important test of all!

Are your concerned that your child’s teeth are not brushed properly? Are your child’s teeth unclean even with regular brushing?

Contact us at our Markham, Richmond Hill or Stouffville location now and we will find the solution you need.!

Markham (905 294 0995) | Richmond Hill (905 709 3888) | Stouffville (905 642 3642)


Signs that my child may need orthodontic treatment

does-my-child-needs-braces
Orthodontics can be an intimidating topic for children and parents, if your child  visits the dentist regularly they will be able to determine whether it is the right time for your child to see an orthodontist.  At Kids Dental Group we recommend the first orthodontic check-up at the age of 7 and up, if you are concerned prior to that time, please feel free to contact or schedule a FREE orthodontic consultation at one of our locations nearest to you. Keep in mind, there are many indicators that your child needs braces that are not as obvious. See below for some obvious conditions / symptoms that may indicate that your child needs braces:

Leave your concerns with us.

Contact us at our Markham, Richmond Hill or Stouffville location now!

Markham (905 294 0995) | Richmond Hill (905 709 3888) | Stouffville (905 642 3642)


Why does my child get bad breath?

Bad breath, also known as Halitosis, is a condition that even the healthiest children experience. There are hundreds of types of bacteria in the mouth and many causes of bad breath.

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See below for some common causes of Halitosis in your children:

Poor Oral Hygiene

Poor oral hygiene is the most common cause of bad breath in children. When plaque and bacteria are not brushed away, it can irritate and infect the gums, leading to bad breath. We recommend scheduling an appointment with a Kids Dental Group pediatric specialists for regular teeth cleanings and an exam.

Tongue

The grooves of your child’s tongue can house bacteria that result in foul breath. It is important to remember to brush your child’s tongue as well as their teeth to prevent the accumulation of odour causing bacteria.

Sinus Infection

If your child continues to have bad breath after maintaining a consistent oral health routine, it may be an indicator of sinus infection. Schedule an check-up with your child’s pediatrician.

Dry Mouth

When your child’s mouth is producing less saliva than normal, this may contribute to bad breath. In a healthy mouth, saliva helps to clean the mouth and break-down bacteria in food. It is important to keep your child hydrated.

A Foreign Object

Very young children often place foreign items (toys, food pieces, nick-nacks) in their nose. If your child’s nostrils are running and they have bad breath, this could be an indicator of a foreign object stuck in their nose. In this case seek medical assistance immediately.

If you are still halitosis, schedule a consultation with one of our pediatric dentists today!

Contact us at our Markham, Richmond Hill or Stouffville location now!

Markham (905 294 0995) | Richmond Hill (905 709 3888) | Stouffville (905 642 3642)


Common Bite Disorders That Indicate It Is Time To Visit The Orthodontist

At Kids Dental Group, we treat a number of common bite disorders, referred to as malocclusions. If your child suffers from any of the bite problems below, it may be time to schedule your Orthodontic consultation.

common-bite-disorders

Underbite:

An underbite in a condition where the lower teeth and jaw protrude beyond the upper teeth. This causes the lower teeth to overlap the top teeth. For the most part, underbite is a hereditary condition. If you or somebody in your immediate family have an underbite, your child may develop one as well. Underbites can also be caused by thumb sucking or the long-term use of a baby bottle.

Upper Front Teeth Protrusion:

Protruding front teeth, otherwise known as buck teeth, occur when the teeth in the top jaw protrudes over the bottom lip. Like underbites, buck teeth are often caused by genetics. Habits such as thumb sucking and prolonged use of a pacifier can also be to blame.

Crowding:

Crowding occurs when the jaw cannot accommodate all of the teeth in the mouth. Teeth have insufficient room to grow out of the gum and may over lap or turn side-ways as a result. The cause of crowding may be as simple as the shape and size of the jaw. Alternatively, if your child uses a pacifier or sucks their thumb, this may lead to crowding.

Overbite:

Overbite is a condition where the upper teeth dramatically overlap the bottom teeth. When overbite is severe, it can be referred to as retrognathic or a deep bite. Sometimes overbites are hereditary, while others are caused by a malformed jaw.

Openbite:

Openbite occurs when the top and bottom teeth do not overlap. Even with the mouth closed, the top and bottom front teeth do not touch.  Open bites may be caused by common childhood habits such as thumb-sucking or tongue thrusting. Sometimes it is caused by genetic skeletal issues such as excessive development of the molars or jawbones.

Midlines:

It is obvious that dental midlines do not match when the top and bottom back teeth do not match up. Over time, this can lead to jaw pain and other dental issues. Usually, a distorted midline is caused by bad sucking habits and asymmetrical chewing habits.

Have you noticed any of these bite disorders in your child? Our orthodontists are experts in children’s bite disorders and will ensure that you and your child are extremely satisfied with treatment.

Contact us at our Markham, Richmond Hill or Stouffville location now!

Markham (905 294 0995) | Richmond Hill (905 709 3888) | Stouffville (905 642 3642)


What are dental sealants and why does my child need them?

We all know that brushing and flossing are the best ways to prevent cavities, but sometimes we can’t reach every surface of our teeth with a toothbrush. Unlike other teeth in your mouth, your molar and premolar teeth have especially deep grooves and fissures. The food and bacteria that accumulate in these difficult spots can cause tooth decay and poor oral health. This is why dental sealants are crucial.

dental_sealants_pediatric_dentist

What are dental sealants?

Plastic coating placed on the occlusal (chewing surface) of the back teeth is called dental sealant. Dental sealants protect your teeth by creating a smooth surface over the pitted, gritty areas of each tooth vulnerable to decay. This sheer, protective coating adheres to the chewing surface of your teeth to block food bits that would otherwise sink into the fissures of your molar and premolar teeth and to stop acid and bacteria from settling.

When should dental sealants be applied?

The earlier your child gets dental sealants, the better. Most children’s first molars appear around the age of 6, and the second molars around the age of 12. If your child receives dental sealants as soon as their molars erupt beyond the gums, their teeth will be protected through the cavity-prone years.

Luckily, dental sealants will benefit your child’s oral health for several years –sometimes lasting until adulthood before they need to be reapplied!

On that note, we offer dental sealants for our adult patients as well! However, it is less common for adults to have dental sealants applied.

How are dental sealants applied?

Your child’s pediatric dentist will follow a number of simple steps to apply dental sealants (not to worry, they are all completely painless!):

  1. First, your dentist will clean and dry the tooth to prepare it for the plastic coating.
  2. An acidic gel will be placed on each affected tooth to create a grainy surface. This gel makes the surface of the teeth rough, so the sealant will adhere to the surface effortlessly.
  3. After a few moments, your dentists will rinse off the gel and dry the tooth again. Your dentist will then apply the sealant onto the grooves of the tooth and use a special blue light to harden the sealant.

Although they are no substitute for daily oral hygiene, sealants can prevent early stages of decay from growing into full cavities.

Consider dental sealants for your child now to save time later!

Contact us at our Markham, Richmond Hill or Stouffville location now!

Markham (905 294 0995) | Richmond Hill (905 709 3888) | Stouffville (905 642 3642)


Benefits Of A Dual-Specialty Practice

We love watching our little patients grow and develop into teenagers. But as they grow, they have different needs and require different services. As a dual-specialty practice in pediatric dentistry and orthodontics, we cater to all of your child’s oral health needs and support them along their journey.

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Here are three ways you and your child will benefit from our dual-specialty practice:

  1. Dentistry is a multifaceted discipline with many different aspects and concerns. In our office, our orthodontists and pediatric dentists understand the complexity of dental and orthodontic treatment. Having your pediatric dentist and orthodontist in the same office allows them to get a comprehensive look at all of your child’s dental concerns and put together a customized dental plan that works seamlessly. A dual-specialty office is the only way that your child’s dentist and orthodontist will get a full scope of their needs and work side-by-side to deliver an excellent patient experience.
  2. At Kids Dental Group, your child can go straight from their favourite pediatric dentist to an orthodontist that is also familiar with their concerns. We pride ourselves on creating a welcoming, caring environment that embraces your child and eases any worries they may have about their treatments. In our office, this experience doesn’t end with just one treatment. The same dentists and orthodontists will support your child for years to come. From their first visit to the dentist at 12 months to orthodontic treatment in their teenage years, your child will be greeted by the same caring, familiar faces every time they walk through our doors.
  3. Between picking the kids up from school, taking them to extra-curricular activities, and all of the other responsibilities of a parent, it can be difficult to schedule several different appointments in multiple locations. Our dual-specialty practice minimizes time and the pressure of making it to multiple appointments. We know that parents are ladened with over packed schedules and limitless concerns. When you bring your child into one of our offices, you can finally relax and be sure that they are in good hands.

Contact Us at the location most convenient for you to schedule your initial consultation!

Markham (905 294 0995) | Richmond Hill (905 709 3888) | Stouffville (905 642 3642)


Did You Know That Bad Oral Hygiene Could Affect Your Overall Health?

Most people know that good oral hygiene is an important factor for a healthy mouth and great smile. But did you know that poor oral hygiene can harm your body? Pay special attention to tooth and gum care or you may endanger your overall health.

oral-hygiene

The mouth is the “gateway to the body. It is the portal through which you nourish and care for your body, so it is not surprising that lack of oral heath can affect your whole body.

Basic oral hygiene includes:

  • Brushing teeth at least twice a day
  • Flossing everyday
  • Avoiding sugary, cavity-causing food
  • Avoiding tobacco products
  • Visiting your dentist regularly

Failure to do any of the things above can lead to several heath consequences:

Plaque:

Every time we eat, we build a layer of bacteria over our teeth called dental plaque. When teeth are not cleaned, more bacteria forms on top of the plaque already present, which could result in cavities. When plaque builds under your gums, infections can occur that are dangerous to the health of your gums and the bones that support your teeth.

Cardio Vascular Disease:

People that neglect oral hygiene are proven to be more likely to develop heart disease. A build up of bacteria in the mouth can enter into your blood stream, narrowing your arteries. The clot-promoting protein in plaque can clog arteries and cause serious heart damage.

Respiratory Infections:

The Journal of Periodontology found that gum disease from lack of oral hygiene can cause infections in your lungs, including pneumonia! Breathing bacteria from infected teeth and gums over a long period of time will contaminate your lungs, leading to disease.

Great oral care is the first and easiest step to a healthy mouth and body.

oral-hygiene-pediatric-specialist

Contact our Markham, Stouffville, or Richmond Hill office to book a consultation now.


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