Back to School Tips: A Dentist’s Checklist

Girl in red glasses standing beside back-to-school chalkboard

After a summer spent relaxing on the beach, staying up late, and indulging in ice cream, it’s easy to overlook daily dental routines. Now that your child is back to school, it’s important to get back on track when it comes to their dental health. Here are a few things you can do before scheduling an appointment for a checkup at Wilson Pediatric Dental.

Dentist’s Back-to-School Checklist

Purchase a new toothbrush

With the new school year well underway, you might get your child a brand-new backpack, a stylish wardrobe, and a range of school supplies. But while you shop, you should also pick up a new toothbrush and a fresh case of dental floss for your child.

To keep their teeth healthy and strong throughout the school year, it’s important to promote a daily routine of brushing and flossing teeth. Ensure that your child brushes in the morning before hopping on the bus, and in the evening before bed. Explain to them the importance of maintaining a healthy mouth and gums, and what could happen if they don’t regularly brush their teeth, including the development of cavities and gingivitis.

Pack the right snacks

Proper diet and healthy teeth and gums go hand-in-hand, so it’s also important that your child is eating well while they’re in school. Pack healthy snacks and lunches with raw vegetables, fresh fruits, and whole-grain crackers for your child to bring to school.

Foods that are high in sugars, carbohydrates, and starches can contribute to the production of plaque acids that break down your child’s tooth enamel and cause decay and gum disease. Keep your child’s mouth healthy this school year by sending them to school with healthy foods to eat.

Protect their teeth

Back to school means your child is back to organized physical activities with their classmates, whether it’s for a recreational soccer game or everyday gym class. If your child already has sensitive teeth, has braces, or participates in contact sports, consider giving them a mouthguard to bring to school. A mouthguard can help protect your child’s teeth during physical activities to prevent their teeth from loosening, breaking, or getting knocked out (avulsed) completely.

Schedule Regular Dental Appointments at Wilson Pediatric

The best way to ensure your child has a healthy mouth this school year is by scheduling a dentist appointment at Wilson Pediatric Dentistry in Wilson, North Carolina. Our team of talented pediatric dentists will help your child feel comfortable while we treat their teeth and gums.

If you’re looking for teeth cleaning in Wilson for your child, call Wilson Pediatric Dentistry at (252) 291-4300. Schedule your appointment today.

Follow This Checklist When Choosing a Local Dentist

Dentist attends patient while dental assistant smiles at viewer

You might need to find a new dentist for any number of reasons. Maybe you’ve just moved to the area. Maybe you’re looking for a second opinion. Maybe your insurance policy has changed. Or maybe you’re a new patient in need of a cleaning.

If you’re looking for a dentist near you, make sure you keep the following tips in mind.

How to Choose Your Dentist

Cost and Insurance

When researching different dentists, your first consideration should be cost and insurance. Do they accept your insurance? Do they offer discounts to those without insurance?

Make sure to consider the varying costs of different appointments and whether or not your insurance covers them. For instance, your insurance may cover an annual dental cleaning, but not an appointment for a filling or oral surgery at that same office.

Before you commit, give your insurance provider or the dentist’s office a call to find out about insurance coverage or costs for appointments.

Convenience

When driving to your dentist appointment, do you really want to travel an hour outside of the city when a similar practice is closer? Consider the amount of time it takes to get to and from different offices, so you can fit appointments into your busy schedule.

You should also find out their hours of operation — can you fit in a quick cleaning after work or schedule an appointment for the weekend? To find a dentist’s business hours, check their website or call their office.

Qualifications and Services

Before you let someone poke around your mouth with metal instruments, you should find out if they’re qualified to do so. Ask your prospective dentist about their qualifications, certifications, or specialty, especially when looking to have more difficult oral surgeries and procedures performed.

Every dentist office is different, so one might offer more serious oral procedures while another may not. Save yourself the hassle of shuffling from one office to another to get a surgery done, and find a dentist that provides all of the oral care services you require.

Personality

You won’t know how you feel about a dentist until you meet them — call the office you’re considering and schedule a consultation. That way, you aren’t going in blind to an appointment that sounds good on paper. You want to make sure you’re entirely comfortable with the dentist you choose.

Visit Wilson Pediatric Dentistry Today

If you run through this checklist, you’ll have a clear path to choosing a dentist office near you.

For those in Wilson County, start your search at Wilson Pediatric Dentistry, a local dentist serving children and adults in Wilson, Rocky Mount, and Kenly, NC. Schedule a consultation with our office today. We look forward to hearing from you.

Dentist-Approved Snacks Your Kids Will Love

girl eating apples out of a basket of fruit, a tooth healthy snack in wilson, nc

With the high levels of processed sugars in most pre-packaged kids’ foods, choosing quick snacks for your children can feel like a minefield. While some foods contribute to the growth of bacteria and plaque, others can actually protect dental health. But which treats are the best for teeth? Are there any healthy snacks that are easy to make and serve on the go?

Your dentist in Wilson, North Carolina, is here with some tips.

No Fuss, Tooth-Healthy Snack Ideas from Your Dentist in Wilson, NC

A general rule of thumb for picking healthy foods for yourself or your kids is sticking to whole foods and limiting processed foods. What’s the difference? Whole foods typically consist of just one ingredient. These include fresh fruits and veggies, meats, whole grains, nuts, and dairy products. Processed foods, like cookies, chips, or sodas are often high in sugar or fats.

Usually, whole foods are around the outside of the grocery store, while processed foods are up and down the aisles. Here are a few easy-to-prepare, tooth-healthy whole foods kids will love.

Apples

Not all sweet foods are bad for your teeth. Most fresh fruit can provide a sweet taste without risk of tooth decay. The dietary fiber in apples also helps stimulate saliva, which pairs with the fruit’s high water content to rinse off your teeth while you chew.

Yogurt

Yogurt, like most other dairy products, is rich in calcium and protein, which help to make teeth stronger. However, not all yogurts are created equal. Look for yogurts that are low in sugar and fat content. If you want to sweeten the yogurt yourself, you can always add fresh fruit.

Cheese

Cheese also contains calcium and protein, but it comes with its own unique benefits as well. Cheese has been shown to increase the pH level in your mouth, decreasing the acidity. Lower acidity levels means lower risks of decay.

Cheese sticks and cheese wheels make great on-the-go snacks that require no prep. Cheddar also pairs nicely with sliced red apples.

Oatmeal

Whole grains like yogurt, brown rice, and those found in whole-grain bread bring a lot of healthy fiber to your diet. However, whole grains also have the added bonus of fighting gum disease. Oatmeal is a great choice because it’s low-fat, filling, and an easy to prepare. You can also add fruit, like bananas, strawberries, or apples to oatmeal to make it more interesting.

Like yogurt, you need to watch out for sugar-added varieties. Stick to old-fashioned or steel rolled oats.

Celery

Celery is a dental superfood. High water levels? Check. Dietary fiber? Tons of it. Sugars? Almost none. Crunchy celery also massages your gums as you chew, improving their health. Other raw vegetables will also provide similar benefits.

Unfortunately, few kids appreciate the taste of raw celery. Just jazz it up with peanut butter, cottage cheese, or cream cheese and your kids won’t be able to get enough.

Want more healthy ideas for your kids? Your Wilson, North Carolina, dentist will be happy to discuss dental-friendly snacks at your child’s next checkup. Schedule your appointment or contact Wilson Pediatric Dentistry at (252) 291-4300