Is Your Child Having a Dental Emergency? Here’s What to Do

A tooth, dentist tool, and first aid kit, denoting a dental emergency.

A dental emergency can be a scary situation, but the good news is that most of them can be resolved with a visit to the dentist.

There are steps you can take before you arrive to ensure your child’s health and safety. If your child is experiencing a dental emergency right now, contact us immediately at (252) 291-4300.

What is Considered a Dental Emergency?

There are many different types of dental emergencies. The most common situations include:

  • Tooth is knocked out or becomes loose due to injury
  • Tooth is cracked or chipped
  • Severe tooth pain
  • Severe bleeding, especially after an injury
  • Tooth abscess
  • Oral/facial swelling

Minor toothaches, lost fillings, and food that gets stuck between teeth are not usually considered dental emergencies, so it’s safe to wait for an appointment in those situations. If you’re not sure if your child should see a dentist right away, go ahead and give us a call just to be safe.

What to Do in the Event of a Dental Emergency

The first thing you need to do in any emergency is call the dentist’s office. Dentists reserve time in their schedule to accommodate emergency situations. Explain in full detail what happened and what symptoms your child is experiencing so the office can refer you to the best care.

If the office is closed or the dentist is not available, call first thing the next morning. If it is a life-threatening situation, such as a serious cut or infection, or your child is having trouble breathing or swallowing, head to the hospital emergency room.

Knocked-Out Tooth

If it is a baby tooth, retrieve the tooth and keep it moist in a glass of milk until you can see the dentist. They may want to implant it. If it’s a permanent tooth, follow the same steps. Avoid touching the root. Get to the dentist as soon as possible, preferably within an hour of the accident occurring.

Cracked Tooth

If a tooth is cracked, rinse out the mouth with warm water. Place an ice pack or cold compress to the face to help reduce swelling. Then, get to the dentist right away.

Bleeding

If your child’s gum, tongue, or lip is bleeding, gently clean the area with water. If the bleeding doesn’t stop, go to the dentist or emergency room as soon as possible.

Call Wilson Pediatric Dentistry

When a dental emergency happens, try to remain calm, call Wilson Pediatric Dentistry, and follow the steps listed above. Our office offers emergency dental services in Wilson, NC, to treat most conditions and help keep your child’s mouth healthy.

Why Are Fluoride Treatments Important for Young Teeth?

little girl at a pediatric dentist getting fluoride treatment

At Wilson Pediatric Dentistry, fluoride treatments are a regular part of dental exams and cleanings. Most children receive anywhere from two to four treatments a year. Why? Because fluoride plays an important role in making sure your child’s teeth are strong and healthy all throughout childhood and into adulthood.

Keep reading to learn more.

The Importance of Fluoride for Your Kids

What Are Fluoride Treatments?

Fluoride is a natural mineral found in water all around the world. It’s also used to fortify public drinking water and some foods and other beverages. But a fluoride treatment at the dentist’s office is a little different.

During a treatment, the dentist will paint a small amount of fluoride onto the child’s teeth. The fluoride will quickly harden in place, and any excess is usually brushed off later that day to ensure that almost none is swallowed by the child.

After the fluoride is applied, it becomes part of the tooth’s outer layer, the enamel, to help strengthen it. When combined with good oral hygiene practices, such as brushing and flossing, fluoride does a great deal to support dental health.

The Benefits of Fluoride Treatments

According to the American Dental Association, fluoride is a safe, effective way to prevent tooth decay. Since kids tend to consume a lot of sugar, tooth enamel erodes over time and can eventually lead to cavities.

About 27.9% of all children aged two to five and 51.17% of all kids aged six to 11 will get a cavity during childhood. However, by strengthening the tooth enamel, fluoride can help prevent, slow down, and even reverse decay.

Even though baby teeth fall out, childhood cavities can still lead to problems in adulthood. One reason why is because tooth decay may cause the baby teeth to fall out too soon, leaving an empty gap. Neighboring teeth can begin to shift, moving into the empty spot and causing misalignment of incoming adult teeth.

With regular fluoride treatments, it’s possible to minimize cavities and ensure good oral health for today and tomorrow.

Schedule a Visit at Wilson Pediatric Dentistry Today

Interested in learning more about fluoride treatments in Wilson, North Carolina? Visit Wilson Pediatric Dentistry for a consultation and meet our team.

With offices located in Wilson, Rocky Mount, and Kenly, North Carolina, our dentists are committed to instilling good oral health in kids all throughout the area. Schedule a cleaning for your child today.

Why You Should Schedule Regular Dental Checkups for Your Kids

With homework, play, and exploring to do, your kids don’t have a lot of time to think about taking care of their teeth. That’s where your local Wilson, North Carolina, pediatric dentist comes in. An experienced pediatric dentist can help your children navigate their dental development with healthy smiles.

Here are a few reasons why regular dental checkups are necessary for kids of any age.

Why You Should Schedule Regular Dental Checkups With Wilson Pediatric Dentistry

Baby Teeth Matter More Than You Think

Why bother taking care of baby teeth if they’re only going to fall out in a few years? We hear this question all the time at Wilson Pediatric Dentistry. Although baby teeth do eventually fall out, their health can play a large impact on the wellness of the incoming secondary teeth.

Baby teeth, also called primary teeth, serve as placeholders for permanent teeth. If a child loses a primary tooth too early, either to decay or injury, the primary tooth may shift and come out in the wrong position.

Regular dental checkups can prevent the premature loss of primary teeth and mitigate the effects when it does happen.

Different Ages, Different Goals

To contrast the dental maintenance performed by most general dentists, pediatric dentists have unique goals for their young patients: prevention, development, and habit-building.

Prevention

A good pediatric dentist can prevent most dental issues and the stress and pain that comes with them. When we see your child for regular checkups, we can spot and diagnose the problems your child can’t notice themselves and suggest treatments or behaviors to keep them from worsening.

Development

Childhood is also the heaviest stage of dental change. Whether their first set of teeth are coming in or falling out to make room for permanent teeth, kids’ mouths are constantly developing. Pediatric dentists are uniquely qualified to monitor this development and intervene if necessary.

Habit-Building

Seeing a dentist regularly and often also helps children develop healthy dental habits. Pediatric dentists like Dr. Elmore help create dental plans that help kids get accustomed to tooth-healthy foods and home care. Even getting into the routine of seeing a dentist twice a year is setting important behaviors in place during the most formative years.

Schedule Your Child’s Checkup With Your Local Wilson Pediatric Dentist

Looking for an experienced pediatric dentist in Wilson for your child? Dr. Elmore and the team at Wilson Pediatric Dentistry have been keeping kids’ teeth looking and feeling their best for years. Schedule an appointment or contact us at (252) 291-4300.

How Can Dental Sealants Protect Your Children’s Teeth?

dentist applying dental selants to a child's teeth with a purple light

Teaching children to brush and floss efficiently enough to prevent cavities can be a challenge for even the most diligent parents. Factor in all the juice and other sweets children get their hands on and it’s no wonder over 40 percent of kids under 11 develop cavities on their baby teeth. 

Fortunately, there’s an easier way to protect children’s teeth from plaque, bacteria, and decay. Many parents today are turning to dental sealants for help.

How Dental Sealants Work

So how can dental sealants protect your children’s teeth?

A dental sealant is a very thin layer of plastic coating that is applied to the surfaces of teeth. They are most often used on the back teeth where most chewing takes place. The sealant fills the grooves and crevices of the teeth to form a protective shield over the enamel. This protective shield forms a barrier between food and the actual tooth, making it more difficult for sugar and other harmful substances to attack the tooth.

Applying Sealants

Applying dental sealants is not a difficult process. Your children’s teeth will first be cleaned and dried. Then an acid substance is placed on the teeth to provide the sealants something to bond with. After rinsing and drying the teeth again, the sealant is then “painted” onto the teeth with a brush where it then hardens.

Dental sealants are recommended during the cavity-prone ages of six to 14. Dental sealants can last for up to 10 years and will be inspected for wear and tear during regular checkups. Many insurance companies provide coverage for the cost of dental sealants for patients under 18 years of age.  

Where to Get Dental Sealants for Your Children

Wilson Pediatric Dentistry is happy to provide dental sealants and other treatments for your child. We understand that visiting a dentist can be scary for a child and that’s why we’ve dedicated our practice to providing the best possible experience for young patients in a fun and comfortable environment. Our team has years of training and experience working with children, even ones who have had negative experiences at a dentist in the past.   

Schedule an appointment today for our Wooten Blvd location in Wilson, NC to help put a smile on your child’s face.    

What You Need to Know About Your First Kid’s Dentist Visit

pediatric patient at a kid's dentist having his teeth examined

A kid’s first dental appointment can seem like an intimidating experience. Often the parent is just as worried as their child going in. What if it goes poorly and your child develops a fear of visiting the dentist? The team at Wilson Pediatric Dentist recognize how stressful the experience can be. That’s why we work to make the whole process easy with an understanding, gentle, and kid-friendly care.

Take the fear out of the first visit to your kid’s dentist by learning what you can expect from Wilson Pediatric Dentistry.

What’s Going to Happen at Your Kid’s First Dentist Appointment?

When Should My Child See the Dentist for the First Time?

The first thing to figure out is when you should start taking your child to the dentist. We recommend scheduling their first appointment shortly after their first tooth erupts, which usually occurs after about one year.

Starting care so early lets your kid’s dentist monitor the development of new teeth from the beginning. If your child is a little older, don’t worry. It’s never too late to get started on good dental care.

When You Get to the Waiting Room

Every aspect of our dentistry is geared toward making the experience as comfortable and stress-free as possible. This begins as soon as you enter our office. The waiting room has a fun, kid-friendly design and is filled with toys to help make their visit easier.

You and your child will be greeted by our warm and friendly staff. Every member of the team has training and years of experience working with children, and know how to ease them into treatment. We’re also careful to avoid any frightening language or tones.

When You See the Dentist

This gentle care continues into the examination room. If your child is very young, Dr. Elmore may have you hold them in your lap while she works. Older kids are encouraged to come into the office on their own so they can start to build a friendly relationship with the dentist, but you can still sit in on any appointment.

At the first appointment, we will keep treatment to a minimum and focus on examining the developing teeth. This makes sure that their first experience with a dentist is a positive one and helps them shed some of the anxiety for their next visit.

Making a Dental Care Plan

Since your child likely isn’t old enough to make their own dental care choices, you’ll need to take the lead on good dental health. That’s why the final part of your first dental visit will involve working with Dr. Elmore to create a home care plan to promote healthy tooth development.

This plan will be built around your child’s unique needs and stages of development. These typically cover:

  • Dental hygiene tips
  • Nutrition
  • Teething
  • What to do about habits like thumb sucking
  • Future developmental milestones
  • A dental examination schedule

By following the plan we create, you’ll be giving your child a great foundation for a lifetime of healthy teeth. The plan is also flexible and open to amendments based on observations from future appointments.

Is it time to schedule your first visit with an attentive, gentle kid’s dentist? Make an appointment with Wilson Pediatric Dentistry or contact us at (252) 291-4300.

How To Protect Your Kids’ Teeth From Holiday Sweets

With the constant influx of candy, cookies, and other sugary treats, the holiday season can take a toll on teeth. This is especially true for children, who would probably subsist on the sweet stuff if they were allowed. As a parent, you need to take extra steps to protect your kids from holiday sweets before their next dental visit.

You can also make sure that any extra holiday plaque is taken care of by scheduling your kids’ next dental cleaning at Wilson Pediatric Dentistry.

Ways to Protect Your Kids’ Teeth From Holiday Sweets Ahead of Their Next Dental Cleaning

Ration the Sweets

It is impossible to keep holiday sweets from your children completely, but you can lessen the negative health impact by dolling candy out over a long period of time. If you give your just a few sweets every couple of days, they’ll see it as a special treat and not a regular part of their diets. It can also be a fun way to count down the remaining days until they get their real gifts.

Be Wary of Hard Candies

All sweets can promote plaque buildup, but hard candies, like candy canes, pack extra risks. Children often lack the patience to wait for these candies to dissolve naturally, so they bite down. Doing so may lead to them breaking or chipping a tooth. Limit hard candies when possible and encourage kids not to bite.

Don’t Let Them Crack Nuts With Their Teeth

Your kids may be tempted to try to crack nuts open with their teeth after they see holiday nutcrackers do the same. Like hard candy, this also puts them at risk for fracturing teeth. Unlike hard candy, nuts are packed with healthy proteins and nutrients you want your kids to consume. Just make sure to give them pre-shelled nuts.

Their Teeth Aren’t Box Cutters

Children are often so enthusiastic to break in their new gifts, they throw all manners to the side and dig into the packaging with their teeth. This can lead them to damaging their teeth, cutting their gums, or getting something lodged between their teeth. When it comes time to open presents, keep a pair of scissors handy and brace yourself for flying wrapping paper.

Maintain a Routine

With all the traveling that comes with the season, it can be hard to maintain a regular schedule of brushing twice and flossing once daily. Unfortunately, it can be hard getting back into a habit once it’s broken. Make sure your kids brush and floss at around the same time every day, even when you’re on the road.

Schedule Strategically

Experts recommend you take your child in to see a pediatric dentist once every six months. You can get more out of these visits with smart planning. Schedule one of their regular dental cleanings for one of the weeks after the holidays. This will help them eliminate all the extra candy plaque and start the new year with fresh smiles.

Contact Wilson Pediatric Dentistry to schedule your child’s dental cleaning to help them recover from the deluge of holiday sweets.

How to Know When Your Child is Having a Dental Emergency

young girl at a dentist appointment, pediatric dental emergency

 

If your child is experiencing a dental emergency, CONTACT WILSON PEDIATRIC DENTISTRY IMMEDIATELY AT (252) 291-4300 for same-day dental care.

Few things are worse than seeing your child in pain. As a parent, you want to do whatever you can to keep your child healthy. With all the playing and exploring kids do, pediatric dental emergencies are not uncommon, and an important part of protecting your daughter or son’s dental health is knowing how to react when they happen.

Here are some common examples of pediatric dental emergencies, so you know what to do and when to contact your pediatric dentist for emergency treatment.

What is a Pediatric Dental Emergency?

A pediatric dental emergency is any unexpected dental issue that requires immediate attention or treatment.

Many of these problems come with extreme pain. Some emergencies can even impact the way new teeth come in. Here are some of the most common pediatric dental emergencies we experience in our office.

Lost Tooth

If your child suddenly and unexpectedly loses a tooth, they should see their pediatric dentist immediately.

If you’re able to find the tooth, keep it. Make sure the tooth stays moist with milk, salt water, or saliva during the drive to the dentist. If your child is older, you can put the tooth back in the socket or have them hold it in their mouths. Avoid this with younger children, as they may swallow the tooth.

If the lost tooth is permanent, we will do our best to try to reintroduce it. The faster we can act, the more likely the procedure is to be successful.

If your daughter or son unexpectedly loses a baby tooth, we will not typically try to replace the tooth, even if it was lost very early. This is because reintroduction may harm the incoming permanent tooth bud. You should still bring your child in for emergency dental treatment, so that the damage can be assessed.

Chipped or Broken Teeth

With kids constantly rough-housing sometimes teeth end up chipped or broken. Whether the fracture occurs in the crown or fracture, the pain is usually considerable.

Treat the tooth with a cold compress and children’s pain medicine. Next, call Wilson Pediatric Dentistry for emergency dental care.

Tooth Pain

Chances are, if your little one’s teeth hurt, they won’t be able to verbalize specific causes of the pain. Toothaches come from a variety of issues ranging from the routine to severe. Some common causes are:

  • Food stuck in the teeth
  • Cavities
  • Trauma
  • Tooth fracture
  • Tooth eruption

Check your child’s mouth for abnormalities, and have them rinse. If the pain persists, take them in for treatment.

Displaced Teeth

Sometimes teeth don’t get knocked out but knocked around. Whether they become impacted or made crooked, displacement can have a negative impact on future development and requires immediate attention. Treat the tooth with a cold compress while you’re on the way to the office.

Dental Abscess

A tooth abscess is a nasty infection occurring in the roots your child’s tooth. If left unchecked, this infection can spread to other parts of the body. Some signs to look out for include:

  • Severe tooth, jaw, or gum pain
  • Swollen gums
  • Fever
  • Bad taste in mouth
  • Bad breath

If your child is experiencing any of these issues, don’t waste time. The faster you act, the sooner they’ll be smiling again! Wilson Pediatric Dentistry in North Carolina offers same-day emergency appointments during business hours. Call us at (252) 291-4300.

What You Need to Know About Your Children’s Dental Care

child brushing her teethAll parents want to help their children get the best possible dental care, but it can be difficult. When should you start taking your child to the dentist? What kind of dentist should they see?

How do you promote good home care? Wilson Pediatric Dentistry in North Carolina is here to help get your little one started off right.

What Parents Need to Know About Taking Their Children to the Dentist

You Need To Start Earlier Than You May Think

Most children should have their first dentist appointment when they turn one year old. This is usually about the time the first primary tooth emerges. The early start is necessary so that your child’s dentist can monitor the teeth as they come in, and establish a dental plan.

Pediatric Dentists Have a Unique Focus

It is true that family dentists can treat children. All dentists are licensed to work on people of all ages. However, pediatric dentists undergo several additional years of specialized training with kids. Pediatric dentists, like Dr. Elmore, focus more on setting up dental plans and ensuring healthy development than treating issues after they happen.

Children can also be very fearful of dentists. Offices like Wilson Pediatric Dentistry are made to be warm and welcoming, and the staff is specifically trained on making young patients feel at ease. By taking your child to a pediatric dentist, you’re getting them the best possible dental care.

Baby Teeth Matter, Too

It can be easy not to see the point in taking your young one to a pediatric dentist. They’re going to lose all of their baby teeth anyway, so why bother taking care of them?

The truth is, what happens to the baby teeth can have a significant impact on the development of the secondary teeth. The primary teeth serve as a placeholder for new teeth. Any disruption or early loss of these baby teeth can have adverse effects on the way the permanent teeth come in.

Baby teeth are also just as prone to cavities as adult teeth. Taking care of your child’s dental health can prevent the unneeded pain of a cavity.

They Need Your Help

One of the most important things pediatric dentists do is create a dental plan for our patients. This individualized plan lays out healthy eating strategies, proper home care, and an appointment schedule.

Since young children can’t plan their own lives, they’ll be counting on you to help them keep with their plans. Pediatric dentists empower parents with the tools to be their children’s greatest dental allies.

Get your child started off right on the path to healthy smiles. Call Wilson Pediatric Dentistry at (252) 291-4300 to learn more, or request an appointment online.

Get Your Child the Best Care at a Pediatric Dentist

boy holding teeth and a red toothbrush

Your child’s first dentist appointment is an exciting step in their life, but where should you take your child? Should they see a general, a family, or a pediatric dentist? Is there even a difference between them?

How Do Pediatric Dentists Differ from General Dentists?

Children have unique dental needs compared to adults, and pediatric dentists, like Dr. Jasmine Elmore at Wilson Pediatric Dentistry, have specialized training to help meet those needs.

Additional Training

Any licensed dentist who has graduated from an accredited institution is qualified to serve patients of any age. However, pediatric dentists don’t just go through different training, but additional training. These dentists require an additional two or three years of education and training focused on issues and treatments specific to children.

A Unique Focus

Children have special dental needs compared to adults. Pediatric dentists are uniquely qualified to help with those issues. The primary focus for a pediatric dentist will not be on dealing with issues after they’ve happened. Instead, they will build a plan for your child based on their needs, to help foster healthy development.

Pediatric dentists also specialize in treatments that are more helpful to kids, like dental sealants, disking baby teeth, and fluoride treatment.

Friendly Setting

General dentist’s offices are often cold and clinical. This is fine for an adult, but for a younger child, this environment can be terrifying. This kind of atmosphere is the biggest contributing factor to kids hating the dental visits. Pediatric dentists create a warm, colorful setting that puts children at ease.

Most dentists also lack training or experience working with children who don’t want to be there. Pediatric dentistry offices are staffed with people who love working with kids. They have experience helping calm nervous children.

Why Should You Take Your Child to Wilson Pediatric Dentistry in Wilson, NC?

Dr. Elmore and the team at Wilson Pediatric Dentist, in Wilson, North Carolina, have years of experience helping to build healthy smiles for their young patients. With specific experience working with kids who have had negative experiences with dentists, we will make your child’s experience both comfortable and fun.

Our team looks forward to working with your daughter or son. Contact us at (252)291-4300 to learn more about how we can help your child.