Category: Pediatric Dentistry

Your First Visit to an Asheville Pediatric Dentist

Your child’s first visit to their pediatric dentist in the Asheville area is an exciting experience. This is the first time that they will meet their dentist, get an examination, and if all goes well, discover that a dentist’s office is not a scary place after all.

Child getting ready to go to pediatric dentist in Asheville

You and your child should familiarize yourself with what to expect during that initial visit. As a person who’s been to the dentist before, you’ll likely have insights that you can share with your child. This first step is important to encourage good oral health in your child, which is linked to good health overall.

The First Visit To The Dentist

There is a lot of varying information out there as to when a child’s first trip to the dentist should be. Some folks, including those at the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, believe that the first visit should take place before the first birthday. This is definitely good advice as early visits to the dentist promote healthier oral hygiene habits and establish a positive impression for your child early on. If you can’t make it within the first or second year, just be sure that you do so before your child’s third birthday.

What to Tell Your Kids Before Their First Visit

Take time before the actual appointment to talk to your child about what they will experience. Be sure to use positive terminology and a calm voice when you do so. Let them know that the dentist will do things like give their teeth a good cleaning and count how many teeth there are. They may even take pictures of their teeth. Avoid saying things like, “it won’t hurt” as that will only give them the impression that it might. A child’s fear of the dentist will only occur if they perceive that fear from an adult in their life. If your child has a fear of the dentist, there are ways to help them overcome it.

What Parent’s Should Expect

A child’s first dental visit is usually very quick and involves little actual treatment. Depending on the practice and doctor, you may be asked to come in and sit in a dental chair during the exam or you will be asked to wait outside in the waiting room so that the dentist can begin to build trust with your child.

The first exam will usually consist of a gentle inspection of your child’s teeth and gums. X-rays may be ordered to check on the progress of your child’s set of permanent teeth or look for decay. The first visit may also involve a light cleaning and a bit of topical fluoride to protect teeth. Most importantly of all, the dentist will go over with your child the proper ways to clean and care for their teeth and gums.

Preventative Care for Your Child’s Teeth

Preventative care is changing the way that the world looks at children’s teeth. No longer is it assumed that a child’s teeth will suffer from decay, thanks to the doctors and scientists who spend much of their time discovering what causes decay and how to prevent it.

In our office, we are very concerned with preventative care for children. That’s why we invest in the latest dental sealant technology to be used to protect children’s teeth. Sealants are high-tech plastics bonded to the surface of decay-prone teeth in the back of your child’s mouth. This is just one block set in the foundation of good oral care that we are setting for your child.

But so much of preventative care occurs in the household, which is why we need responsible parents like yourself to help us out by encouraging great oral hygiene habits, like brushing two times a day and flossing daily, and a good diet.

Cavities affect millions of adults and children throughout the world. They are often a result of a poor diet that is high in sugary, substance-less foods paired with a general lack of careful brushing. It is, of course, important for you to limit your child’s sugar intake and ensure that they brush regularly, but children that eat very slowly are at a higher risk of getting cavities because residue stays on their teeth for longer.

When a person eats something, an acid reaction takes place inside their mouth. Bacteria digest the sugars that are being ingested through food. This reaction usually takes about 20 minutes, during which time the acid can destroy the tooth structure which may eventually lead to cavities.

Dental Tips for Baby Teeth

Baby teeth will begin to appear in your child’s mouth at around six to eight months. They will appear periodically, starting at the bottom front and working their way back to the sides of the jaw. By three, your child should have all 20 of their baby teeth. Baby teeth are important for biting, chewing, speech, and appearance, which is why it is important that you take good care of your child’s baby teeth even if they aren’t permanent.

If you have more questions about visiting a pediatric dentist in the Asheville area, reach out to us. We would be happy to answer any of your questions or set you up with an initial appointment.

Share this!

4 Ways To Help Your Child Overcome Their Fear of Dentists

As a parent, you already know your tiny human has a lot of unfounded fears. From the time the broccoli looked like “a bumpy green monster” (well played, little one!) to classics like the bad guy under the bed, there are thousands of moments that drive any mom or dad to sympathize, roll their eyes, or even chuckle.

Child is scared to visit the dentist in Asheville

When it comes to fear of the dentist, your child is not alone. Not only are plenty of other children in their shoes, but a great deal of full-grown adults can actually relate as well. So how do you soothe your precious little person? Here are 4 key tips to get you started.

1) Treat It Like a Common Errand

If you spend multiple days in advance trying to emotionally prepare your child for his or her first trip to the dentist, chances are it might backfire. Sometimes as parents, we over-correct a potential problem before the issue even has a chance to present itself. If this will be your child’s first time at the dentist, it’s a good strategy to treat it like a simple grocery run or even an exciting mini-adventure.

Of course, if your kiddo has already been to the dentist a few times and developed a fear, this strategy is less effective. If this is the case, treat your trip to the dentist like a big, brave accomplishment instead.

2) Give Kids Room for Their Own Thoughts

Kids are full of opinions—for better or worse. With this in mind, it can be beneficial to take a step back and let them tell you how they feel. Instead of using phrases like, “Don’t worry sweetie, this won’t hurt,” before you go to the dentist, allow them to form their own opinions. Perhaps they weren’t worried in the first place that it would hurt.

If your child’s evaluation of the dentist is that the experience was scary, make sure to let us know. For instance, teeth can be a bit sensitive after a cleaning and this is something that is much less scary if they are prepared. When working with wary children, we can speak in a way that might be less intimidating; for example, “I’m just going to count your teeth!” or “Let me clean off a few sugar bugs so your teeth are nice and healthy!”

3) Evaluate Whether They’re Better Off With You or Alone

You may be wondering whether it’s best to stay with your child or nudge them out of the nest. The answer is: it depends. Some children may feel abandoned if you stay in the waiting room, whereas others may enjoy the sense of accomplishment that comes with being independent. You know your child best!

4) Don’t Feel Guilty About a Tantrum

In a perfect world, your child wouldn’t throw a tantrum about going to the dentist. But in a perfect world, your child would also eat his veggies, be nice to her siblings, and not yank on the dog’s ears quite that hard.

If your mini-me has shed some tears or tossed a tantrum, don’t feel bad. It’s not an uncommon occurrence. The friendly staff at Rebol Family Dentistry is here for you and we ultimately want to provide both you and your child with the best experience possible. Please let us know any and all of your family’s needs!

Not a patient yet? If you’d like to make an appointment, for yourself or your child, please give us a call at 828-358-2292 or schedule an appointment online.

Share this!

5 Reasons to Schedule a Dental Appointment Before School Starts

It’s that time of year again; the kids are going back to school! New notebooks? Got ‘em. Booster shots? Yep! What about a dental check up? 

Child goes to pediatric dental appointment before school starts

Though it may seem like medical check ups are the only necessity for kids going back to school, a dental check up and teeth cleaning are highly recommended at the start of the school year. A healthy mouth means a healthy kid! And some schools actually require that teeth have been checked prior to the school year, so why not take the time and do so now?

Your Schedule Isn’t Crazy (Yet!)

One of the best parts about taking your child to the dentist during summer is that everyone’s not so busy yet! As soon as September hits, most children will have after-school activities, parents will be shuttling their kids from point A to point B, and life will have returned to its regularly scheduled mania again.

Carve out some time for your children to see a dentist before going back to school. You’ll be happy to have it out of the way, and your doctor will be able to tell you whether or not further treatment is necessary, such as braces or fillings. We recommend that children see us every six months or so due to the high rate of change that happens during their school years.

A Healthy Mouth Means Better Grades

Getting a check up prior to the start of school can improve a child’s chance of excelling academically. They won’t have to miss days of school, which means they’ll be spending their time in the classroom where they should be.

Additionally, kids can become easily distracted by pain or discomfort. If there is an issue with their teeth or oral health, they might fixate on that instead of focusing on their teacher. Ensure that they are good to go with a dental check up before the school year!

Fluoride and Fresh Breath

There’s nothing like a fresh set of choppers! Set your children up for the new school year by clearing away debris and deep cleaning their teeth. Additionally, by scheduling an appointment before the school year starts, your dentist can look for infections or decay and treat them if they exist, preventing further days out of school.

Fluoride is important to protect teeth and help them grow stronger. Make sure your child is up to date on fluoride treatments. While most cities have fluoride in the water, sometimes it’s not enough.

Reinforce Good Habits

There’s never a bad time to reinforce good habits! This is especially true during the last weeks of summer, as everyone will be busy when school starts up again. Take your child to the dentist and allow the doctors to do the talking. Pediatric dentists in Asheville in particular are trained in ways to encourage good dental habits and will be a welcome addition to your own encouragement.

Remember, not all kids will be able to brush alike. Talk to your family dentist about what to expect from your child at their age. For example, children six and under may think they’re ready to brush by themselves but often lack the necessary motor skills. Make sure that the whole household is doing their part to prevent cavities.

If you don’t yet have a family dentist and live in the Asheville area, contact us to set up an appointment.

Tonsil Check

Dental check ups are an ideal time to take a look at your child’s tonsils as well. Enlarged or inflamed tonsils can interfere with a child’s well being, usually by affecting their sleep or concentration. This is important to recognize and treat early on.

The back-to-school season is always hectic, and we understand that parents can get a bit bogged down with tasks. Try to make the time to see a dentist and get a check up before the school year. If you are interested in speaking to one of our doctors, make an appointment today.

Share this!

Why Are Your Teeth Sensitive After a Teeth Cleaning?

Tooth sensitivity is familiar to many people一the sensation of sudden pain or sensitivity that comes from drinking or eating something hot, cold, sweet, or very acidic, or breathing in cold air, is quite common. This is especially true after getting your teeth cleaning here in Asheville.

Woman getting her teeth cleaned at the dentist in Asheville

You can expect to feel a bit of sensitivity in your teeth following a dental cleaning, particularly with a deep clean, but the sensation should fade over time, leaving your teeth and gums healthier than they were before.

What Causes Tooth Sensitivity?

There are plenty of causes of sensitivity in one’s teeth. Sensitivity can occur when the gums have receded enough to expose the underlying root of the tooth, which are not covered by hard enamel. The tooth’s root acts as its nerve center一within each are thousands of tiny channels leading to the pulp. This area can be extremely sensitive when exposed.

The leading causes of tooth sensitivity include:

  • Poor oral hygiene – gum recession is often a result of tartar and bacteria build-up
  • Brushing too hard – a very common occurrence. About two in three people apply too much pressure when brushing.
  • Mouthwash – continual use of mouthwash over long periods of time.
  • Nerve damage – This can occur in the teeth and will lead to significant sensitivity.
  • Broken, cracked or ground teeth
  • Diet – acidic foods and overstimulation by hot or cold beverages can cause sensitivity
  • Dental procedures – such as whitening, capping, filling, or cleaning, though this should go away after a brief period of time.

Sensitivity From a Deep Clean

Tooth sensitivity can often be the result of a deep clean performed by your dental practice. To remove tartar and other calcified bacteria from your teeth, your dentist will have to use special tools in a process called scaling.

Your dentist may also use tools to remove tartar from the root surfaces between the gum and tooth roots in a process called root planing. Prior to a deep cleaning, the gums can be inflamed and swollen, and there may even be pockets of infected bacteria within the gums.

While scaling and root planing may result in some irritation and bleeding, they both help to treat problems such as inflamed and swollen gums, and ultimately benefit the overall health of your mouth.

Speak to your doctor about the severity of your cleaning, and they may be able to offer localized anesthesia if your appointment is likely to be extremely irritating.

What to Expect After a Deep Clean

You should expect your gums and teeth to be a bit sensitive after you have a deep dental cleaning. Tooth sensitivity and even some bleeding from the gums are all normal too. Many of these effects are due to contact between the cleaning tools and inflamed gums, which tend to bleed easily. Additionally, deep cleanings will expose areas of the teeth that were previously covered by tartar and are not covered by enamel, so it will take a while for your teeth to adjust to this new area of sensitivity.

Following a cleaning, uncomfortable and sensitive teeth should last no more than a week, according to the American Dental Association (ADA). If you brush carefully and regularly, swollen, tender gums should improve gradually and bleeding should stop. The general discomfort most often associated with dental cleanings should clear up in one to two days. Tooth sensitivity, however, is harder to avoid, but it shouldn’t last longer than a week.

This is especially true when consuming hot or cold foods, as well as highly acidic foods. We recommend sticking with softer foods and avoiding beverages at either temperature extreme. Recommended foods include staples like:

  • Yogurt
  • Mashed potatoes
  • Apple sauce

As you feel more comfortable, then you can start reincorporating harder foods like breads and raw vegetables. You should be back to eating whatever you want without any extra sensitivity in your teeth within 2 to 3 weeks.

Caring for Your Teeth After a Clean

Though sensitivity is to be expected following a deep clean, there are still steps you can take to care for your teeth. Our Asheville dentists recommend rinsing out your mouth with warm salt water a 3-4 times a day after the procedure. This type of rinse is a classic that will kill off lingering oral bacteria while also reducing inflammation. Additionally, make sure that you are brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing daily to keep out the bacteria and support healthier gums.

Allow your gums time to heal by avoiding common triggers of sensitivity or pain.

Brush your teeth carefully with a soft-bristled toothbrush while your gums are still sore, and wait at least a day before flossing. If you there is sensitivity that is still making it difficult to eat or even talk, then we recommend taking an appropriate dosage of acetaminophen or ibuprofen.

For anyone who smokes, we also recommend that you avoid smoking for at least 3 days after the deep dental cleaning. Now you also know that we can’t mention smoking without also stating that you should consider quitting if you smoke habitually. As an Asheville dentist, we see a lot of smokers who have advanced gum disease. This is extremely tough to treat.

Were you prescribed some antibiotics after your deep cleaning? If so, then please make sure that you stick to the prescribed dosage schedule. If you quit early, then you run the risk of gum disease returning. Dr. Rebol may also schedule a follow-up appointment to have you come back in a few weeks after your teeth cleaning. We just want to make sure that your teeth and gums are looking great and healing up.

Prevent Future Teeth Sensitivity By Practicing Good Oral Hygiene

It should go without saying that you need to continue to practice good oral hygiene after your teeth cleaning in order to prevent further teeth sensitivity and gum disease. You can start by making sure that you are brushing your teeth at least twice a day for two full minutes. Use the stopwatch feature on your phone the first few times, because yes we really mean that you should brush your teeth for 2 full minutes. Take care when brushing those areas where your teeth meet your gums. We recommend investing in a good electric toothbrush if you haven’t already.

If you still feel sensitivity three or four weeks after treatment, contact us for a follow up. We can assess your teeth and gums and check that all are healing well. Though sensitivity is something that most patients should expect, it should not last for longer than a month.

If you are interested in setting up an appointment with one of our capable doctors, go ahead and fill out a form here. Rebol Family Dentistry is currently accepting new patients. We look forward to serving more people in the Asheville area!

Share this!

When Should You See a Pediatric Dentist in Asheville?

We know that caring for your children’s health is a top priority, including the health of their teeth and gums. Finding the right pediatric dentist is a big decision一hopefully, they’ll be taking care of your child (or children) for many years to come and throughout a particularly active period for dental growth. So how do you know when to see a pediatric dentist for your child? And how do you find the right one in the Asheville area?

First, let’s breakdown the responsibilities of a pediatric dentist. Like pediatricians, pediatric dentists work exclusively with children. They are the primary and specialty oral care providers for infants and children up to adolescence. To be able to take care of your child’s teeth, pediatric dentists must attend an additional two to three years of training after they complete their dentistry degree. There is a lot of hard work, dedication, and learning that goes into taking care of little teeth!

The First Visit To Your Pediatric Dentist

Most experts agree that parents should take their children to a pediatric dentist around the appearance of the first tooth, no later than one or two years old. There are a couple of reasons for that. The first visit really isn’t for the dentist to do any work, it’s more an opportunity to introduce your child to the doctor and their office. This allows your young one to explore some instruments around the practice and sit in the chair. Once he or she has become more comfortable, the dentist can take a peek inside their mouth and get an idea of what’s going on in there.

Pediatric dentist working with first time patient in Asheville

This initial visits accomplishes three things: it establishes trust between your dentist and your child (and yourself), which is very important as your baby grows and will require more treatment. It also introduces you and your child to the language that the office uses. Most pediatric dental practices will have their own terms for common dental tools that make them more friendly and easier to understand.

Additionally, the dentist can do a quick examination and check your child for tooth decay. Your pediatric dentist will also check on your child’s jaw, gums, and bite, keeping an eye out for possible complications that could develop later.

At the end of the visit, your dentist will talk to you about good oral hygiene practices for the little one, as well as answering any questions you may have. They may even offer your child a goodie bag for being so brave! We love giving kids a little something extra for coming in to see us.

Routine Visits to the Dentist Moving Forward

After you’ve taken your child to their very first pediatric dental appointment, you’ll want to make sure to come in for regular appointments every six months. Since childhood is such a big period of growth for teeth, it’s important that they are checked on regularly. This also gives your pediatric dentist the opportunity to check for red flags, like misalignment from extensive thumbsucking and white spots or discoloration on the surface of the teeth.

Picking The Right Pediatric Dentist in Asheville

Finding the right pediatric dentist is half the battle, but for anyone living in the Asheville area, we have good news: we are a family dental practice and have pediatric dentists who are currently taking new patients!

Most children are at least a little apprehensive about visiting the dentist. That’s why it’s so important to find a pediatric dentist who’s willing to have fun. Their job is to take care of babies and children, so a sense of humor kind of goes with the territory. Seeing a dentist who’s able to have fun will make a world of difference when you’re going to appointments. This is important to remember as a parent as well. Your child will be able to sense any tension or stress you have while taking them to the dentist’s office, and may interpret that as fear. Try to have fun with them as much as you can! This takes the dread out of the dental process. Visits to the dentist’s office doesn’t need to be like pulling teeth!

If you or someone you know is in need of a new pediatric dentist, get in touch with us and schedule an appointment– here’s some more information for our new patients! Rebol Family Dentistry is committed to providing the best care possible for the families of Asheville.

Share this!