Learn Healthy Dental Hygiene From a Pediatric Dentist

Dental hygiene is important for overall health, especially for children. If your kids start with a good foundation for oral health, they will carry these lessons into adulthood. Healthy dental hygiene will reduce or prevent many future oral problems including ulcers, gingivitis, or even root canals. Here are some tips on how to help your kids learn good teeth cleaning in Greenville, NC.

Learn Healthy Dental Hygiene From a Pediatric Dentist

Start at an Early Age

Kids learn very quickly as they grow, and visiting a dentist at an early age helps them to understand the importance of their teeth. It is advisable to visit a pediatric dentist and book regular visits with a kids dentist as soon as your child’s first tooth appears. 

 

If you have more than one child, it’s a great idea to take your kids for a teeth cleaning service at the same time. Try combining the visit with a fun family activity on the same day to positively reinforce the dental visit.

Regular Dental Visits

Most problems with children’s teeth can be prevented by regular dental visits. This allows your dentist to maintain your child’s baby teeth. On average, a child should visit the dentist at least ten times before starting kindergarten. If your child’s baby teeth are healthy from regular checkups, their adult teeth should develop without any problems.

Lead by Example

As a parent, you are the most important role model for your kids. They look up to you for guidance, and this extends to dental care. If you demonstrate to your child the right way to brush their teeth, they will copy you. Children need to build a routine as they grow and brushing your teeth with your children together is a fun and important way to teach them great dental habits.

Provide Healthy Substitutes

Everyone loves sugar. The problem is too much sugar can cause serious damage to teeth, especially in children. As a substitute, try using little bags of healthier fruit or raw vegetables for your kids. Fruits and vegetables will provide essential vitamins and minerals, which further improve their dental health.

 

Talk With Your Dentist

Your child’s dental health is as important as their physical health. Your friendly pediatric dentist is here to help your child build a firm foundation for a lifetime of bright smiles and good dental hygiene. We also provide extra tips and advice at Serving Greenville.

 

Contact us at Wilson Pediatric Dentistry to introduce your child to a lifetime of good dental hygiene and book a teeth cleaning service today.

Teeth-Healthy Snacks Your Kids Will Love (Great for Teeth Cleaning & Health!)

You already know that calcium is great for strong teeth and bones…but how can you effectively get that into your kid’s diet and teeth-cleaning routine? If you’ve been looking for new ways to enhance your child’s diet and get some extra teeth-friendly benefits, we’ve got you covered. The snack ideas in this list not only save you a few extra trips to the pediatric dentist, but they’ll also get some extra midday teeth cleaning done – leaving your child with a fresh and healthy smile. 

 

Read on for our full list of snacks to protect your child’s oral health.

 

Best Teeth-Friendly Snacks for Oral Health According to a Pediatric Dentist

Looking for snack inspiration? You’re in the right place! Read on for our full list of smile-friendly snacks. 

 

1. Crispy & Crunchy Fruit or Vegetable Sticks 

They can be sweet, they can be savory, and they’re all around delicious. These healthy snack options are inexpensive, rich in nutrition, and are fantastic when paired with your child’s favorite dip or spread. Crunchy veggies and fruits offer additional teeth-specific benefits, too, giving your child’s teeth a quick brush effect. They’re also usually rich in Vitamin A & keratin for healthier enamel and less overall plaque. 

 

2. Dairy-Based Snacks 

This entry on the list likely isn’t a surprise! Cottage cheese, string cheese, plain milk, and other dairy items are great for your teeth. They are rich in both Vitamin D and calcium, which strengthens bone health. Just be sure to brush after, though, as they can also have sugars that sit on the surface of your tooth’s delicate enamel. 

 

3. Watermelon 

Watermelon is an overlooked snack suggestion for oral health, but it shouldn’t be! It’s incredibly high in antioxidants that can fight free radical damage and bacterial overgrowth in your mouth. If eaten in a high enough quantity, it can also support your body’s hydration – promoting healthy levels of bacteria-fighting saliva. 

 

4. Chicken, Eggs, and Beef 

Whether your child enjoys hamburgers, chicken nuggets, or huevos rancheros, all of these protein-heavy ingredients are great for supporting healthy enamel and bone density. Looking to go the extra mile & make your meal even healthier? Pair these once-in-awhile favorites with your child’s favorite veggie- or fruit-based side dish. 

 

Top Rated Teeth Cleaning & Pediatric Dentist in Greenville, NC 

Curious about your child’s oral health? Book a teeth cleaning today at Wilson Pediatric Dentistry! Our team of dental experts have been working exclusively with pediatric patients, offering them the emotional support and strategies they need for effective teeth cleaning &  lifelong healthy smile habits. For more information and to book your appointment today, please give us a call at (252) 291-4300. 

What All Parents Should Know About Baby Teeth and Pediatric Dentistry in Knightdale

Watching your child develop is a wonderfully exciting time, and we all want to give our kids a great start in life. It’s both encouraging and sobering to know that your choices now can affect your child’s health for life, which is why it’s important to know what to expect with baby teeth. Finding quality pediatric dentistry in Knightdale for your child is crucial for your child’s future dental health. 

Good Health Begins With Teeth

Our oral health is like a gateway into our overall health, which is true for kids and adults. The human mouth contains bacteria that can get into the digestive and respiratory tract, causing disease. 

Good brushing and flossing protect your child from gum disease and tooth decay: but these habits also safeguard their overall health. 

Even Baby Teeth Need Dental Care

Some people mistakenly believe that kids don’t need dental care until their permanent teeth erupt. Yes, they will eventually replace your child’s baby teeth, but they are critical to your child’s health and welfare. 

Baby teeth enable your child to smile, speak correctly, and chew their food. And the space made by baby teeth helps the mouth form properly to allow adult teeth to come in properly.  

Pediatric Dentistry

It’s crucial that your child visits the dentist early in life, and the best time is after you see the first tooth erupt. Regular dental visits will teach you and your child how to care for teeth, help prevent cavities, and alert you to any dietary problems that are causing dental issues. They may even help you avoid expensive dental work down the line by addressing issues while they are still small

At-Home Care

Any tooth can decay, and baby teeth have less enamel and are therefore more at risk of decay than adult teeth. Brushing should begin as soon as the teeth erupt. Brush and floss your child’s teeth twice a day. 

Let them help and teach them how to do it as they get older. If they learn to floss while they have only a few, more widely-spaced teeth, they’ll have fewer issues flossing their permanent teeth once those come in. 

A Good Diet Is Crucial

Sugar is the worst thing for teeth, yet nearly all foods have sugar: even fruits, vegetables, and milk. That said, some foods and drinks are harder on the teeth than others. 

Children should rarely eat sticky fruit snacks and candies, sugary sodas and juices, or sour candies with ascorbic acid. Always choose foods low in sugar, encourage your children to drink water, and choose something other than sweets for snacks and meals. 

Find a Partner in Pediatric Dentistry in Knightdale

You don’t have to care for your child’s teeth alone. At Wilson Pediatric Dentistry, Dr. Jasmine Elmore has dedicated her career to helping children achieve excellent dental health so they can thrive for a lifetime. Visit us at Wilson Pediatric Dentistry today to schedule an appointment and get your child on the road toward good health. 

When Should Your Child Start Brushing Their Own Teeth?

How early should you be helping your child to brush their teeth? Afterwards, when and how should kids start brushing their own teeth? With so much information available online, it can be difficult to get the clear answer you’re looking for as a parent.

 

Read on to learn more about tips that you can use today to start good brushing habits with your kids, and to answer the question of when your children should begin brushing their own teeth. 

 

When should you begin brushing your child’s teeth? 

You can begin brushing your child’s teeth from as early as four months old, well before they even have teeth.

 

Starting early can help to stimulate blood flow in the gums, and can encourage great oral health from an early age. Simply use a wet, soft towel or even your finger. You won’t have to worry about using toothpaste until their first tooth appears. Be sure to use a very small amount on a soft-bristled brush when you brush your child’s teeth for the first time. 

 

How can I help my child have good brushing habits? 

Brushing their teeth on their own is a habit that you’ll have to support your child in learning. Your child can start learning how to brush their own teeth at age 3, while they should be brushing their own teeth morning and night by age 4. Here are a few tips and tricks to help you to stay on the right track with your child’s personal oral hygiene habits from a young age. 

 

  1. Mirror & copy 

Have your child take part in your own oral care routine. Focusing on having them mirror you can help you to instill good brushing habits, and allows you to regularly monitor their oral health. It also shows them how high of a priority oral care is when it comes to one’s overall well-being.

 

  1. Encourage & incentivize 

As your child develops, you can begin using habit trackers and other incentives to keep them on the right track. Rewards work well to solidify these habits at every stage of development.

 

  1. Visit your pediatric dentist 

Making your dentist trips a priority is key for pediatric oral health. Looking for a pediatric dentist in Greenville, NC? The team at Wilson Pediatric Dentistry is here to help. With years of success and hundreds of happy patients, we’re confident that we can help you get the care you need for excellent oral health. Keep browsing our website to learn more, and feel welcome to schedule your appointment today.

Protect Your Kid’s Teeth During Summer Play

Protect Your Kid’s Teeth During Summer Play

Now that your kids are off of school for the summer, they’ll want to get out and enjoy themselves. Summertime is a great opportunity to have fun and make memories for children, but it can also be quite hazardous if they are not careful. An accident can happen in an instant, and without proper care, could result in serious damage to your child’s teeth. Follow these tips to help protect your kid’s teeth this summer so they can return to school with a happy and healthy smile.

Buy a Custom Mouth Guard

A mouth guard that can be molded to fit your child’s teeth perfectly will provide a lot of protection throughout most types of play. Make sure they are wearing the mouth guard when roughhousing, riding bikes, using skateboards, and enjoying other activities where they might bump their mouth.

Keep Healthy Snacks Available

Summertime often means frequent snacks to keep up their energy. Rather than eating candy and drinking sugary drinks, make sure they have vegetables and other options that taste great and won’t cause problems with their teeth.

Provide Proper Protective Equipment

If your children will be playing any sports, make sure they have the right equipment to do it safely. For potentially dangerous sports like football, baseball, and hockey, make sure their helmet has a full face guard to protect their teeth.

Follow a Daily Brushing and Flossing Routine

Once school ends, the normal routine can go right out the window. If you aren’t careful, this can mean that your kids skip brushing and flossing from time to time, which can leave their teeth vulnerable to cavities. While the summer routine may be different than the normal school year one, it definitely needs to include proper oral care.

Schedule a Dentist Appointment

The summer is the perfect time of year to schedule a dentist appointment for your kids since they won’t have to miss any school. Get a summer cleaning and checkup at the best pediatric dentist in Greenville. Wilson Pediatric Dentistry serves children throughout Greenville, Rocky Mount, NC, Knightdale, NC and the surrounding area. Give us a call at (252) 291-4300 to schedule an appointment today.

Thumb Sucking and Your Child’s Teeth

Thumb Sucking and Your Child’s Teeth

During infancy, children may turn to a variety of “sucking” behaviors in order to self-soothe. The most common of these is thumb sucking, though pacifier use is also quite common. These forms of self-soothing are usually harmless in infancy, but when they extend into early childhood, they lead to the development of dental issues.

How Sucking Thumbs or Fingers Can impact Your Child’s Teeth

In fact, there are a number of ways in which sucking behaviors can adversely impact your child’s teeth or their overall health. Some examples include:

  • The most serious effect is malocclusion, also known as an open bite. This describes a type of dental misalignment that is notable even when the mouth is closed.
  • Long-term thumb sucking may also result in an overbite, a type of malocclusion in which the top teeth cover the bottom teeth any time the mouth is closed.
  • Thumb sucking can contribute to speech impediments. Because thumb and finger sucking results in shifting to the teeth, jaw, or palette, it can affect your child’s ability to form certain sounds.

How to Stop Harmful Behaviors

There are a few tips and strategies we recommend for parents who wish to put an end to their child’s thumb sucking behaviors.

  • Reinforce positive behaviors. Sticker/reward charts can work really well for most kids.
  • Start by eliminating thumb sucking during daytime, then naps, and finally nighttime.
  • Consider the use of Mavala thumb polish and/or fabric gloves.
  • Consider painting a face on the thumb with a non-toxic marker, a gentle reminder to your child.

Talk with a Pediatric Dentist

For additional insights, or a consultation regarding early-stage dental concerns, we recommend scheduling a consultation with a pediatric dentist.

As you search for a pediatric dentist near you, keep Wilson Pediatric Dentistry in mind. We are happy to serve kids and parents throughout the Wilson, NC community. Schedule a consultation appointment with us at any time.

How to Comfort Your Child for Their First Dental Appointment

Kids Dentist Visit

Most pediatric dentists agree that a child’s first dental appointment should be scheduled around the time of their first birthday. One reason for this is that it provides a way to ensure that your child’s smile is developing just the way it’s supposed to. Additionally, it creates early familiarity with dental care, helping your child to become more comfortable with the idea of going to the dentist.

 

Even if you do ensure early exposure to the dentist, however, bracing your child for a cleaning can be a little bit daunting. (After all, there are even adults who get the jitters before their trip to the dentist.) Here are a few tips for parents to keep in mind as they seek to comfort their child in advance of a dental appointment.

 

Tips to Prepare Your Child for Their First Dental Visit

 

  •   Exude positivity. If you convey anxiety, your child will doubtless pick up on it. Even if you’re not a huge fan of going to the dentist yourself, it’s important to put on a smile and adopt a cheerful tone as you drive your child to the appointment.
  •   Check out some books and shows. Try to find some children’s stories that involve (positive) trips to the dentist, which will show your child what a routine part of life it is.
  •   Schedule your appointment for earlier in the day. Generally speaking, kids do better at the dentist when they are still pretty fresh and alert.
  •   Find the right dentist. We highly recommend finding a pediatric dental practice. Pediatric dentists have special expertise in soothing children’s nerves and helping them feel safe and comfortable during their cleaning. (Naturally, for a kids’ dentist in Greenville, NC, we recommend our practice!)
  •   Ask for a tour. Don’t hesitate to ask your dentist for a quick tour of the building before the appointment, showing your child that it’s not a scary place.
  •   Don’t talk about it too far in advance. No need to let your child’s imagination run wild for weeks before the appointment. Instead, consider telling them about the appointment on the morning of.

 

To schedule your child’s dental cleaning in Greenville, NC, we invite you to contact Wilson Pediatric Dentistry at your convenience.

How to Choose Your Child’s Toothbrush

HOW TO CHOOSE YOUR CHILD’S TOOTHBRUSH

When it comes to choosing a toothbrush for your child, it may seem that there are simply too many options. Brushes vary not only by size and shape, but by color and by the cartoon characters shown on the box. Of course, some of these factors are purely aesthetic; we’ll leave them up to you and your child to decide. As for selecting a toothbrush that gets the job done, we do have a few suggestions.

Tips for Picking Your Child’s Toothbrush

For Babies and Toddlers

Before your child has any teeth, you don’t need to worry about brushing. Simply wipe their gums clean after a meal with a wet cloth. Once that first tooth erupts, buy them a toothbrush that has a small head and an easy-to-grip handle. Your child won’t really have the fine motor skills to brush effectively, but this is a great time to train them in proper oral hygiene habits.

Ages 5-8

Once your child reaches this age range, they should start becoming a bit more independent in their oral health care. Look for toothbrushes that have slimmer handles, suiting your child’s increased dexterity. Also keep in mind that, at this point, your child’s jaw is getting larger, meaning a larger brush head is just fine.

Preadolescence

Most of the time, kids who are eight and older should be able to brush on their own. Brushes for this age group should look a lot like adult toothbrushes, with the possible exception of a slightly larger handle or smaller head. Also note that, at this age, kids often fare well with electric toothbrushes.

Schedule Your Child for Teeth Cleaning in Greenville, NC

There are a few things you can do to help your child maintain robust oral health. Getting them a toothbrush, then showing them how to use it, is crucial. Additionally, make sure you schedule regular appointments with an oral hygienist. As soon as your child develops teeth, get them into a routine of teeth cleanings every six months.

To schedule a cleaning in Greenville, reach out to our office at your convenience. Our pediatric dentistry team is here to help.

Teeth are Not Tools: Why You Shouldn’t Misuse Your Teeth

All of us know what it’s like to struggle with some kind of packaging, usually plastic, that we just can’t seem to get open. Without a knife or scissors handy, you may feel the temptation to just use your teeth. That temptation is all the more pronounced when you’re not thinking very clearly about oral health or the long-term effect misusing your teeth on objects can have.

 

The simple reality, though, is that your teeth aren’t tools, and using them as such can create long-term damage. As parents, it’s important to reiterate to your children that the teeth are there for chewing food, not for tearing off tags, opening packages, or carrying items around the house.

 

The Problem with Using Teeth as Tools

 

It may help to have some clarity on exactly what can happen when you use your teeth as tools, or when you allow your kids to do likewise.

 

The most obvious issue is that using your teeth as tools can damage them. Using teeth to open packaging is one of the leading causes of chipped teeth. In some cases, using teeth to open packaging can break the teeth, requiring them to be replaced with artificial teeth or potentially even dental implants. Misusing your teeth can also wear out tooth enamel, leading to your teeth becoming more sensitive and prone to harmful damage.

 

There are other oral health risks, too. For example, using the teeth to open packaging can cause cuts to the lips, gums, or inside of the mouth.

 

In some cases, using the teeth to open a package may even injure the jaw, causing ongoing pain or impeding proper functionality. Don’t forget that placing any non-food item in your mouth can potentially be a choking hazard, a risk that’s even more serious for kids.

 

The bottom line? Using the teeth as tools is tempting, but also very dangerous. Always take the extra step of seeking scissors, instead. Depending on their age, kids should be encouraged to do likewise, or to come to a grown-up for help.

 

Find a Pediatric Dentist Near Me

 

With any questions about ensuring proper oral health and hygiene for your kids, feel free to schedule an appointment with our pediatric dentistry team. Reach out to Wilson Pediatric Dentistry at your convenience.

How to Treat Your Child’s Tooth Pain

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We all know how uncomfortable it can be dealing with tooth pain, and it can be even more painful watching your child go through the experience.  

 

If a young one in your household is experiencing tooth pain, there are some home remedies you can try that may alleviate the pain until you can schedule an appointment with a pediatric dentist. 

 

Treating Tooth Pain

Losing a tooth naturally typically does not hurt, but it can be painful when the new tooth is growing in. Tooth pain can also be caused by decay, fillings, cracks and chips, and even sinus problems. 

 

Below are some ways to treat your child’s tooth pain until they can be seen by our team. 

 

Saltwater rinse

Salt water is a natural disinfectant that can help loosen food particles that may be stuck between teeth and causing pain. It can help heal oral wounds and reduce inflammation too! Mix a half teaspoon of table salt with warm water and have your child rinse their mouth just like they would with mouthwash. 

 

Cold compress

A cold compress causes blood vessels to constrict which can reduce swelling, inflammation, and pain. Fill a plastic bag with ice and then wrap in a towel and hold it against the affected area in 20-minute intervals, repeated every few hours as needed. 

 

Vanilla extract

The alcohol in vanilla extract can bring immediate relief to a sore tooth. Just place a few drops of the extract on a cotton swab and apply gently to the affected area. And don’t worry, the alcohol is safe for treating tooth pain in children when used in moderation under adult supervision and is even great for teething babies

 

Garlic   

Garlic has been used as a tooth pain remedy for thousands of years. Crush a garlic clove into a paste and apply to the affected area or have your child chew on a fresh clove, careful not to overdo it on size.

 

See a Pediatric Dentist in Greenville, NC

If the pain persists, you may need to have your child see an emergency pediatric dentist. Schedule your appointment or contact us at (252) 291-4300. We offer same-day pediatric emergency care and can take the necessary steps to quickly diagnose the problem, administer the proper treatment, and alleviate your child’s pain.

How to Incentivize Teeth Cleaning | Greenville, NC

image for article titled Kids Dentist in Greenville, NC: How to Make Brushing Fun for Kids

There is no rule saying that brushing your teeth has to be a boring task. Continue reading to learn 4 ways you can make brushing fun for your kids. 

4 Fun Tooth Brushing Strategies

Incentivize Brushing

It’s no secret that kids thrive on positive reinforcement. More than likely, you have already incentivized other tasks or chores your child completes throughout the day with some sort of reward system, so why not integrate brushing into a reward system as well? 

When choosing a reward, try to avoid any sugary treats which would undermine the goal of brushing in the first place. Instead, think of something your child would be excited to work for such as stickers or extra screen time. Before you know it, brushing will become seamlessly ingrained into the daily routine. 

Make It a Family Event

One reason your child may not enjoy brushing her teeth is because she has to step away from the fun to do something she sees as boring. Rather than sending her to the bathroom to brush her teeth alone, make it a family event. This will help you monitor and correct your children’s brushing techniques to promote better oral hygiene practices. Taking time to floss and brush your teeth as a family will also remove the distraction of wondering what they might be missing out on while brushing. 

Find an Inspiring Toothbrush

Toothbrushes come in all shapes and sizes. As long as a toothbrush covers all the basics, there’s no reason not to find a toothbrush that displays your child’s favorite movie character or plays their favorite song. Give your kids some ownership over their toothbrushes by allowing them to pick out a new toothbrush and age-appropriate toothpaste. 

Combine Brushing With a Favorite Song

Adding a song to the mix won’t just make brushing more enjoyable for your child, it will help them brush for the full 2 minutes that dentists recommend for brushing. Find a song that lasts approximately 2 minutes, or stop the song at approximately 2 minutes. Rather than becoming impatient with the task at hand, your child can focus on the tune of her favorite song. 

Find a Pediatric Dentist in Greenville, NC

Partner with a dentist who makes oral hygiene fun and relatable to your kids. Wilson Pediatric Dentistry is now accepting new patients for teeth cleaning in Greenville, NC. Schedule an appointment today.

The Importance of Fluoride in Pediatric Dentistry

The Importance of Fluoride in Pediatric Dentistry


You may recognize fluoride as an ingredient in your toothpaste or mouth rinse, but what exactly is fluoride and why is it so important for your child’s developing teeth? Continue reading to learn more.

The Connection Between Fluoride and Dental Hygiene

What Is Fluoride?

Fluoride is a mineral which is found in plants, water, soil, and even air. Fluoride is consumed naturally in our food and water and might often be prescribed as a supplement. In the body, fluoride acts as a strengthening agent and offers a variety of benefits to our bones and teeth which is why fluoride is a commonly used substance in pediatric dentistry.

How Fluoride Benefits Your Teeth

Throughout the day, we consume a variety of minerals such as fluoride, phosphate, and calcium. These minerals are deposited onto the protective enamel layer of our teeth. Acid from sugars and plaque bacteria, however, will strip away these protective minerals. This process is known as demineralization and remineralization. If demineralization occurs faster than remineralization, then the enamel becomes weak which paves the way for cavities and tooth decay.

To strengthen and improve the health of enamel, fluoride treatments can be recommended or prescribed. These treatments help to rebuild weakened tooth enamel, prevent the growth of harmful oral bacteria, and can even reverse the early signs of tooth decay. Fluoride treatments can include mouth rinses and specialized toothpastes. It is always recommended to speak with your child’s dentist before considering these treatments on your own.

The Importance of Fluoride for Children

While fluoride is important to people of all ages, it is especially important between the age of 6 months and 16 years. This is when the primary and permanent teeth come in and additional care should be taken to ensure these developing teeth are strong and healthy. Your dentist can recommend a specific oral hygiene routine to ensure your child’s teeth remain as healthy and as strong as possible.

Pediatric Dentistry Services in Wilson, NC

If you are looking for a dentist for your child, contact Wilson Pediatric Dentistry. We are currently accepting new patients and look forward to helping you establish healthy routines for your child’s lifelong oral health. Give us a call to learn more or schedule your first appointment today.