Pediatric Dentist Boca Raton | Big Tooth Boca | Pediatric Dentist Near Me

Periodontal Disease in Children | Kids Dentist in Boca Raton

Periodontal disease is a bacterial infection in the gums that can impact the teeth and jawbone if left unchecked. About half of all children suffer from periodontal disease. Fortunately, if identified and treated early, its effects can be managed and even reversed to allow your child to return to optimal oral health through adolescence and beyond. 

There are several factors that can lead to the onset of periodontal disease in children. Poor oral hygiene and untreated plaque are the most common, but diet, diabetes, hormonal changes, and even genetic predisposition can increase your child’s risk. 

Your child should be screened for periodontal disease if their gums are:

·         Sore

·         Swollen

·         Red

·         Bleeding from brushing and/or flossing 

If left unchecked, periodontal disease can cause your child’s gums to pull away from the teeth, affecting the structure of the bone beneath and potentially impacting their jaw alignment and bite. Over time, bone and tooth loss can occur. 

Periodontal disease is preventable and highly treatable. Regular cleaning and exam appointments will help keep your child’s teeth and gums healthy. Teach your child about the importance of daily oral hygiene. If periodontal disease has begun, our doctor can help. Contact our office for your child’s periodontal screening today.

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Big Tooth Boca
Phone: 561-482-8000
21301 Powerline Rd #208A
Boca Raton, FL 33433
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Chewing Gum for Your Oral Health | Best Kids Dentist Boca Raton FL

Sugary, sticky, and sweet candies can damage your teeth by increasing your risk of decay. Though gum can be considered a type of candy, chewing sugarless gum approved by the ADA can actually help protect teeth and prevent tooth decay. Here’s what you need to know about gum and your teeth. 

How it Works

Chewing gum helps increase the production of saliva. Chewing sugarless gum for twenty minutes following meals can help prevent tooth decay because the saliva helps wash away food and other debris from the surface of your teeth. Increased salivary flow can also neutralize acids that bacteria produce inside your mouth. Over time, acid can break down tooth enamel, leading to decay. Saliva contains calcium and phosphate, which aid in strengthening tooth enamel.

Look for the ADA Seal

The ADA Seal assures you that the gum is sugarless and has met the ADA’s criteria for safety and effectiveness. ADA-labeled products are tested to ensure they provide the benefits guaranteed by the seal. Companies must verify all relevant data with the ADA to become certified. If you are unable to brush for a short period of time, chewing gum with the ADA seal is a great option to help clean your teeth after a meal or snack. 

Can I Stop Brushing if I Chew Gum?

No. Chewing gum for twenty minutes after a meal helps but is not a replacement for brushing and flossing. You should brush at least twice each day, for two full minutes. Chewing gum also does not eliminate your need for regular dental examinations. Our dentist recommends scheduling two visits each year, with additional visits necessary for high-risk patients with oral health conditions. 

Chewing sugarless gum has noticeable benefits for your oral health, such as increasing the production of saliva. While this can help prevent the build up of decay-causing bacteria, chewing gum should not be used as a substitute for brushing or flossing. Our dentist recommends that if you are chewing gum, be sure to choose an ADA approved brand of sugarless gum.

To schedule your next visit, please contact our dental office

Resources:

http://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/az-topics/c/chewing-gum

http://www.ada.org/en/member-center/oral-health-topics/chewing-gum

Big Tooth Boca
Phone: 561-482-8000
21301 Powerline Rd #208A
Boca Raton, FL 33433

How to Get Your Kids to Eat Healthier | Boca Raton Best Kids Dentist

The food children eat affects their long term oral health. Some foods have nutrients teeth need. Others are full of acids and sugars that are harmful to teeth. With so many unhealthy food choices being marketed to children every day, it is vital that you take a stand. Offer fun, healthy snacks and model the better food choices you want your kids to make. 

Offer healthy snack choices. Kids should have a well-balanced and nutritional diet. This not only promotes overall health but also helps build a strong healthy smile. Nutrition is an important part of oral health. Teaching your kids about eating healthy and limiting sugary foods will help foster a balanced diet from an early age. This will form habits that will result in a lifetime of strong teeth and better health overall. 

Have fun with snacks. Promote a nutritious diet by getting creative with snack choices. If you show your kids that healthy snacks are fun, they will be more likely to eat them. Apple slices with peanut butter, fruit smoothies, and yogurt with granola or fruit are great examples of fun, yet healthy combinations. Remember to avoid soda and sugary drinks. These can leave sugars on teeth and can increase the risk of plaque and tooth decay. Water is always the best solution! Eating a well-balanced lunch and dinner is important as well. Make sure to add a variety of fruits and vegetables to every meal so that your kids become accustomed to them. 

Be a good role model. Children learn habits by following the example set by their parents. Send your kids the right message by eating plenty of fruits and vegetables yourself. Avoid sugary snacks that can cause cavities or gum disease. Be sure to practice good oral hygiene in front of your kids. If you brush and floss after meals and snacks, your kids will follow the example. Consider brushing together with your child to reinforce good brushing skills and habits. Make sure to brush at least twice a day, after breakfast and before bedtime. If it is possible, try to encourage your child to brush after lunch or after sweet snacks.

Follow up. Don’t forget it is also very important to have regular dental appointments for your child, and model healthy habits by seeing your own dentist regularly. If you have any further questions, feel free to contact us for more ideas on how to promote healthy snacking for great long term dental health!

Big Tooth Boca
Phone: 561-482-8000
21301 Powerline Rd #208A
Boca Raton, FL 33433

One Simple Treatment Can Save Your Child’s Smile | Pediatric Dentist in Boca Raton

Our 33433 pediatric dentist might suggest dental sealants for your child during a visit to our office. Sealants are a way to protect your teeth against decay. With any dental treatment, it helps to understand the procedure and how it can impact your child’s oral health.

Why Get Sealants?

Sealants help to prevent tooth decay. Sealants are applied on the back teeth, where decay is most likely to develop. Our dentist will often recommend sealants for children and teens, but adults may benefit from sealants, as well.

The further your teeth are in the back of your mouth, the more difficult it can be to maintain the proper hygiene needed to keep them healthy. Sealants can prevent up to 80% of decay within the first two years alone. After 4 years, sealants continue to prevent as much as 50% of decay. Children without sealants are more than three times as likely to develop tooth decay than those with dental sealants.

When Should You Get Them?

Your child’s first molars usually become visible around age 6, with the second set around age 12. You will want to talk to us about the best course of action for keeping molars healthy. Sealants are most effective when they are done as soon as the molars break through. Regular examinations with our dentist will determine the best time to have sealants applied.

What Should I Expect?

Sealants are one of the simplest treatments we perform in our office. There is generally no discomfort associated with this process. We will first thoroughly clean your child’s teeth, and then use a special gel. The gel is then cleaned off before the sealant is applied. A small blue light is used to harden the sealant in a matter of moments.

What Concerns Should I Have?

There are no side-effects from sealants, and allergic reactions are extremely rare. However, talk to our doctor about any allergies your child has so we can discuss the best possible course of action.

Next Steps

Sealants last for years before needing to be reapplied. It is important to schedule regular visits to our office so that our dentist can check the condition of the sealants and teeth on an ongoing basis. If your child had sealants several years ago and you are unsure if they should be reapplied, schedule an appointment with our pediatric dental team in Boca Raton.

For more tips on keeping teeth healthy and for questions about dental sealants, contact our Boca Raton, FL pediatric dental office.

Big Tooth Boca of Boca Raton
Phone: 561-410-7741
21301 Powerline Rd #208A
Boca Raton, FL 33433

A Parent’s Guide to Teething | Pediatric Dentist in 33433

Teething is a natural and necessary part of your child’s growth. However, knowing that doesn’t make it any easier to handle. If your baby has started teething, or if you are trying to prepare for the onset of this stage, review the information below. Consult your child’s pediatric dentist in Boca Raton for more information about your child’s specific needs.

Symptoms of Teething

Misinformation about teething is common. Understanding what you should expect can help you know when you need to contact a doctor or dentist for your child.

Normal symptoms include: irritability, difficulty sleeping, fussiness, excessive drooling, loss of appetite, chewing on fingers.

Call your doctor if your baby has fever, rash, diarrhea, or if their gums have severe swelling, redness, or bleeding.

Treatment for Teething

Soothing a distressed, teething baby can be difficult. With sore, inflamed gums, your baby may respond to a chilled pacifier or teething ring. You may also try rubbing their gums gently with a clean finger or damp gauze.

It is best not to medicate your child during teething, as this can mask symptoms of a potential illness. Follow the recommendations of your child’s doctor or dentist.

Do not use topical pain relievers, which can be dangerous for young children. Homeopathic teething gels and tablets have not been evaluated or approved by the FDA for their safety.

Dental Care for New Teeth

As soon as your baby’s first tooth emerges, dental care is needed. Gently wipe your baby’s tooth and gums with a damp washcloth at least twice a day and before bed. Once your child has two teeth that touch, begin cleaning between teeth daily using floss or an interdental brush.

Your child should have their first dental visit by age 1 or within 6 months of their first tooth. Stay positive when telling your child about the dentist. Our Boca Raton pediatric dental team will check their teeth and ensure a comfortable first visit. Contact our pediatric dental office in Boca Raton, FL to schedule an appointment.

Big Tooth Boca of Boca Raton
Phone: 561-410-7741
21301 Powerline Rd #208A
Boca Raton, FL 33433

How Candy Threatens Your Child’s Smile | Boca Raton FL Pediatric Dentist

How often does your child eat candy? According to a study conducted by the USDA Economic Research Service, children under 12 consume an average of 49 pounds of sugar in one year. While candy is not the sole source of sugar in a child’s diet, the impacts of sugary candy treats are particularly harmful to teeth. Here’s what you need to know about candy and how it might be damaging your child’s smile. 

The Impact of Sugar on Teeth 

The real culprit in candy is the high sugar content. Certain types of bacteria that are present in your mouth can feed on sugar. These destructive bacteria then create acid that wears away tooth enamel. When enamel is weakened, your risk of developing decay increases. Your mouth is effective at neutralizing acids and aiding minerals that strengthen enamel if the amount of sugars and acids is not excessive. Your mouth can only do so much, which makes it essential to limit your sugar intake and maintain a regular and thorough oral hygiene routine. 

Watch Out for Sticky, Sugary Candies 

Not all candies are made equal. For a general rule of thumb, the sticker the candy, the worse it is for your teeth. Sticky candies leave sugary residue on your teeth long after you are done eating. This gives the bacteria in your mouth more time to start demineralizing enamel. Watch out for sticky candies like gum drops and taffy.  

Suckers, lollipops, and hard sucking candies are troublesome because they are in your mouth for an extended period of time. Like sticky candies, this allows for more time for harmful bacteria to get to work by weakening your teeth. You can also chip or crack a tooth if you bite too hard. 

Other problematic candies include those that are gummy and coated in sugar. Think of gummy worms or another sour covered, chewy critter. Not only are they high in sugar content, but they also typically contain harmful acids that contribute to a loss of enamel. 

Steps for Preventing Decay 

You can help your child by limiting their candy and sugar intake. In some instances, this can be tricky and even out of your control when your child is at school or a friend’s house. What you can do is instill good oral hygiene habits in your child. Make sure they are brushing for two minutes twice each day. You can make brushing fun. Sing a song together for the two minutes, and allow them to choose a fun toothbrush and toothpaste flavor.  

Candy is a fun treat. You don’t have to take it away from your child altogether, but limit their exposure to such treats and educate them about the impacts candy can have on their teeth. When left untreated, decay can spread leading to pain and infection. Maintaining a schedule of regular visits to our pediatric dentist in Boca Raton is essential. More than just a cleaning, we will provide a thorough examination to check for decay.  

If you haven’t already scheduled your child’s next appointment, please contact our Boca Raton pediatric dentist

Big Tooth Boca of Boca Raton
Phone: 561-410-7741
21301 Powerline Rd #208A
Boca Raton, FL 33433

Are Your Child’s Medications Affecting Their Oral Health? | Boca Raton FL Pediatric Dentist

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) say that about one in five children are currently taking prescription medications and more than half of them take vitamins or other dietary supplements.  

Even though they are used as prescribed, your child may experience side effects from the medication that can impact their oral health. Always let us know what medicines or supplements your child is taking and if there have been any changes since your last visit.  

There are some really common side effects from medications that can impact your child’s oral health, read below as we detail some of them and what you can do to help mitigate their impact: 

Dry Mouth 

Many medications, especially decongestants and some antibiotics, can temporarily reduce saliva production. A dry mouth is more likely to develop inflammation and infection, tooth decay, and other oral health problems. Drinking more water, chewing sugar-free gum, and eating crunchy foods like produce can help stimulate saliva production and keep the mouth moisturized. 

Fungal Infection 

Oral Candidiasis, a fungal infection that can affect children who use inhalers for breathing conditions like asthma (these include clotrimazole – Mycelex and fluconazole Diflucan). If your child uses an inhaler regularly, encourage them to rinse their mouth thoroughly with water after each use. 

Abnormal Bleeding 

Thinning of the blood and a reduction in clotting might accompany the use of some medications. As you can imagine, this might cause problems with excessive bleeding during any oral surgery or treatments for periodontal disease. Be sure to keep your dentist informed if your child is taking any medications or supplements before scheduling any treatment. 

Gum Overgrowth 

Drug-induced gingival hyperplasia, or gum overgrowth caused by mediation, is rare in children. It is associated with taking the anticonvulsant phenytoin, the antibiotic cyclosporine, and nifedipine, which is used to control blood pressure in kids who have undergone liver transplants.  

Soft Tissue Reactions 

Inflammation, oral sores, or discoloration of the soft tissues can occur as a side effect of some medications. We may be able to prescribe a special oral hygiene regimen that can alleviate their discomfort if your child experiences any of these reactions. 

Tooth Decay 

While tooth decay is not necessarily a direct side effect of medication, several types of medicine use sugar to improve their flavor, especially those in liquid, chewable, or lozenge form. When taken over a period of time, the sugars left on the teeth can make the development of tooth decay more likely. Choose sugar-free medications; take the medication with meals, if possible; or have your child rinse with water after medicating and wait 30 minutes before brushing. 

If your child is experiencing any of these side effects, or if you have questions about any medications your child is taking, contact our Boca Raton pediatric dentist today and schedule a consultation. 

Big Tooth Boca of Boca Raton
Phone: 561-410-7741
21301 Powerline Rd #208A
Boca Raton, FL 33433

X-Rays: What You Need to Know When You Visit the Dentist | 33433 Pediatric Dentist

X-rays provide useful visual data for dentists to utilize when treating you. Occasionally, guests to our Pediatric Dentist Boca Raton office ask about the radiation from x-rays and the dangers associated with high-exposure. Rest assured, a dental x-ray is one of the safest medical imaging procedures there is. Here’s what you need to know about getting a dental x-ray.

The Purpose of Oral X-Rays

X-ray imaging of the mouth can show our Pediatric Dentist in 33433 dental team damage to your teeth as well as disease. They can also show incoming teeth that could be problematic. X-rays allow our team to prevent problems by addressing them early. Rather than wait for excessive tooth damage to become visible, a simple x-ray procedure can identify it before it becomes painful.

Dangers of X-Ray Radiation

Excessive radiation exposure has been linked to increasing the risk of cancer. However, not all radiation sources are the same. It matters greatly where the radiation is coming from, how much you are exposed to, and for what length of time. X-rays have not been shown to present a significant increase in cancer development.

Comparing X-Ray Radiation

Dental x-rays are among the lowest dose of radiation producing procedures in medical imaging. It would take roughly 1,200 panoramic x-rays of your mouth to equal one CT Scan. Did you know that when you fly in an airplane you are exposed to a small amount of radiation? A panoramic x-ray of your mouth is only half of the radiation you’re exposed to on a 7-hour plane ride. The amount of radiation is even lower for a routine x-ray exam. A routine procedure including 4 intraoral images is about the same dose of radiation from a 1-2 hour plane ride. A dental x-ray provides less than the amount of radiation you are exposed to in the average day from natural radiation. 

Safety First

Even though dental x-rays are safe and expose you to a small amount of radiation, our Pediatric Dentist Boca Raton, FL office takes additional measures to keep you safe. First, state laws and regulations set the limit of radiation patients can be exposed to. We never exceed these restrictions. Our experienced team is also trained to use the x-ray equipment. Visitors are provided with a shield or bib that provides additional protection. 

What You Can Do

Communication is key. If you are a new patient, please provide us with your medical records so that our team knows about any previous medical imaging you have had. Talk to our Boca Raton Pediatric Dentist about your concerns. Together we’ll work with you to ensure you are treated in a safe environment.

Dental x-rays are a safe and incredibly helpful procedure. They allow our Boca Raton, FL Pediatric Dentist to detect problems and develop solutions specific to your mouth. Dental x-rays provide a significantly lower dose of radiation than other safe medical imaging methods. We strive to create an atmosphere where our guests are comfortable. If you have any concerns, please let us know.

If you have any questions or would like to schedule your next examination, please contact our Big Tooth Boca office.

Big Tooth Boca of Boca Raton
Phone: 561-410-7741
21301 Powerline Rd #208A
Boca Raton, FL 33433

When You Should Avoid the Emergency Room for Dental Work | Shelly Levin DDS

You want to save time and money, so you take your child to the emergency room for a dental problem. It’s a growing trend especially among parents, but you should generally avoid using the emergency room when dental problems occur. We understand you want your child to receive the best available care in the quickest manner possible. However, it is important to know the best place to seek out for dental issues is often our Pediatric Dentist Boca Raton office.

How Common is it?

Over the past several years there has been a noticeable increase in the number of patients admitted to the emergency room because of a dental issue. The American Dental Association estimates that emergency room visits for dental issues occur roughly every 15 seconds, for a total of 2.2 million patients per year.  

When You Should Visit the Emergency Room

If your child has a broken jaw or severe bleeding from the mouth, then an emergency room visit is in order. However, when it comes to severe discomfort from a toothache, broken teeth, or extensive decay, our 33433 Pediatric Dentist office is a much better option to help treat you. Our office is equipped with a knowledgeable team that specializes in dental care. Our Children’s Dentist Boca Raton also uses special tools that an emergency room would not be equipped with. 

Why People Choose the Emergency Room Instead

When it comes to children, many parents take their kids to the emergency room because of insurance. You might think it will be easier and cheaper but the reality is often the opposite. Those lacking dental insurance seek out the hospital as a cheaper alternative, only instead to be billed excessively for what is likely considered a “non-emergency.” Also, emergency room wait times can often be extensive so it is usually not a quick alternative.

Our Pediatric Dentist 33433 office works hard to ensure visitors receive excellent, affordable care in the quickest manner possible. Talk to us about your own situation so that we can reach a solution.

Regular Visits Are Your Best Defense

A visit to the emergency room is costly. Instead, your best defense in keeping a healthy mouth is by setting up regular visits to our Kids Dentist Boca Raton office. Many who seek dental care in the emergency room do so because they neglected to act sooner, but our professional dental team can assist you. Tackling dental care early is your best defense.

When it comes to receiving dental care, our Pediatric Dentist Boca Raton, FL office has the knowledge and experience to best serve you. Our Pediatric Dentist Near Me has the necessary tools to treat patients. We strive to see our patients in a timely manner, so call our Pediatric Dentist in 33433 office to schedule your next visit.

If you have any questions about keeping your smile healthy, please contact our Big Tooth Boca office.

Big Tooth Boca of Boca Raton
Phone: 561-410-7741
21301 Powerline Rd #208A
Boca Raton, FL 33433

Teething Tips for Toddlers | Big Tooth Boca

Your baby’s first teeth developing can be a difficult experience for both you and your child. Most teeth begin to appear as early as 3 months to 1 year old. This process can be uncomfortable and cause sleepless nights. However, there are things you can do to keep your toddler less irritable while they are teething.

What to Expect

Sometimes it can be difficult to tell when your baby starts teething. Below are a few symptoms to look for:

  • Fussiness
  • Trouble Sleeping
  • Irritability
  • Loss of appetite
  • Drooling more than usual

It has been thought that teething may cause fever and diarrhea, but research shows that this is not true. If your baby is experiencing any of these symptoms or they worsen, call us for an appointment. 

What You Can Do

View the many different ways to safely soothe your teething baby below:

  • Rub your baby’s gums. Use a clean finger or moistened gauze pad to rub your baby’s gums. The pressure can decrease any discomfort your baby might be feeling. 
  • Keep their mouth cool. A cold washcloth, spoon, or teething ring can sooth your baby’s gums. However, make sure the object is not frozen because extreme cold can be harmful. Also monitor your baby so they do not swallow any small objects. 
  • Introduce hard food. If your baby is already eating solid food, you might want to give them a chilled carrot or apple slice. This can ease their pain and make them less irritable.

Tip: Contact us before using any teething medications or numbing gels that may pose a risk to your baby. 

Teething is a difficult process for not only your baby, but also you. You can relax knowing your baby is more comfortable by using the tips above. 

Also, don’t forget to schedule your baby’s first dental appointment as soon as their first tooth has fully emerged. Call our Pediatric Dentist Boca Raton for an appointment today. 

Big Tooth Boca of Boca Raton
Phone: 561-410-7741
21301 Powerline Rd #208A
Boca Raton, FL 33433