This is a time of transition from primary to permanent teeth and for reconfiguration of the jaw joint structures. We want to make sure that there are no cross bites or constriction of the dental arches that require an abnormal joint shift to bring the teeth together. We also want to assure normal eruption of the permanent molars, as they are important for the normal function of the joint.
At this time too, we want to assure proper alignment of the incisors, top and bottom, and correct alignment of the cuspids or “eye teeth.” (They can sometimes become impacted in the arch or look like fang teeth!) This is a time for rapid growth of the body and the face, and for that reason, it’s a good time to make any necessary changes in the development of the face. This is the age group of children who often receive head gears, for example, to correct overbites and underbites.
At A to Z Pediatric Dentistry, we support the position of the American Association of Orthodontists that children receive a comprehensive orthodontic evaluation by age 7. The evaluation will include standard arch length measurements, registration of their bite and a panoramic radiograph study of their face. When appropriate, a consultation with the orthodontist, pediatric dentist and parents is scheduled to discuss any treatment recommendations.
WHEN YOUR CHILD’S FIRST PERMANENT MOLARS ERUPT, WE WILL SUGGEST TAKING THEIR FIRST PANORAMIC RADIOGRAPH. THIS RADIOGRAPH IS CRITICAL FOR US TO SEE THE PRESENCE, OR ABSENCE, OF THE PERMANENT TEETH AS WELL AS THEIR SHAPE AND ERUPTION PATTERN. WE ARE ALSO ABLE TO EVALUATE THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE JAW JOINT (TEMPEROMANDIBULAR JOINT) AND THE PRESENCE OF MANY PATHOLOGICAL CONDITIONS THAT AFFECT THE JAWS. THIS RADIOGRAPH IS CRITICAL TO MANY DECISIONS THAT WE MAKE CONCERNING YOUR CHILD’S RESTORATIVE AND ORTHODONTIC CARE.
We recommend that parents continue to teach and reinforce good nutrition, including healthy snacking habits and good oral hygiene with their child. We strongly recommend that a parent continue to help a child to brush and floss his teeth until he is 7 or 8. A good rule of thumb is that if he cannot tie his shoes, he can’t do an adequate job of brushing and flossing his teeth. Continue to schedule and keep regular continuing care appointments, or dental check-ups, for your child every 6 months.
MOUTH GUARDS FOR SPORTS
We are very supportive of the use of mouth guards in any contact sports, including football, soccer, and hockey. Mouth guards not only protect the teeth, but can reduce concussions, brain injuries, and injuries to the joints. A mouth guard must be comfortable and not cumbersome, so that the child will use it. If you have trouble finding one to fit, we can make a custom one for your child.
We encourage the use of sugarless gum to help prevent tooth decay! Sugarless gum can actually clean the biting surfaces of the molars and stimulate saliva production. This brings minerals to the surface and helps the teeth heal. Keep in mind that gum with sugar is very bad for the teeth.
SEALING OUT DECAY
Sealants are used to protect the decay-prone areas of the back teeth, and are possibly the best preventive care measures that we can provide your child. Studies show that sealants can reduce caries in these permanent teeth by 70%. Sealants are easily applied and are quite durable, so ask the dentist if your child can benefit from sealants.
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Dr. Z and his staff are excellent! Professional but acutely aware of a child’s point of view and cater to their emotional well-being as well as dental health. Our son had a traumatic fall and had to have some teeth pulled, and Dr. Z made the whole process as pain and stress-free as possible.He and his staff even followed up with us on our cell phones over the weekend to see how he was doing. If you have kids who need to go to the dentist, don’t go anywhere else!!
Dr.Z put a great deal of care into repairing my daughters two front teeth after a motoscooter accident. My daughter had a beautiful smile and now it’s even more beautiful. Dr. Z was the second cosmetic dentist we went to. The first dentist’s work kept falling apart.
Dr. Z was amazing. Our 2.5 year old boy was immediately drawn to the activities in the waiting room which was nicely decorated. My son loved interacting with Dr. Z whose demeanor was great. While I expected my son to cry some, Dr. Z was great about keeping the appointment as stress-free as possible. My son and I talked later that night about how much fun he had at the appointment. We will definitely bring our kids back for future cleanings.
My son just turned 1 year old and I brought him to the dentist for his first dental appointment…Dr. Hassan is SO great! He’s wonderful with children. My son will definitely continue to see him!
My 5 year old daughter can be a little shy at times, and has never quite loved going to the dentist. But Dr. Z was amazing and by the time it was over she didn’t want to leave! This is a great practice, and the staff is excellent! I would definitely recommend. Thanks, Dr Z!
My kids did not want to leave Dr. Z’s office!! Hands down the BEST dental experience my kids, 17 months and 3 years, and I have ever had! The office is spotless and the staff treated us like family. My kids were enthralled with the toys and ipad wall in the waiting room, the TV’s on the ceiling of the exam room, the huge prize wall and the “big kid” nature of Dr. Z himself. We will never go anywhere else!!
I took my 8 & 5 yr.old on 5/26 to Dr. Z and all I can say is that I was very pleased. It started with the young lady that I booked the appt. with over phone to the office visit. Also, the office is very kid friendly. At the end of the visit my 5 yr. old gave Dr. Z a hug.
Everybody knows how hard children are to handle. I took my one year old for her very first time to the dentist, and I was amazed on how Dr. Hassan was able to keep her calm while attending to her dental needs in the most professional way!
Dr Z and his staff were amazing. From the moment you walk into the office until the moment you leave, Dr Z and his staff make you and your child feel so welcomed and taken care of. My 2 year old and 4 year old daughters are terrified of the dentist, but the first time we walked into A to Z, Dr Z made them feel so comfortable that my oldest walked straight to the back to sit in the chair. The question I get every morning from my daughter’s is, “Daddy can we go back to Dr. Z’s office today”!!! I w… Read more
Dr. Z! Thank you for the excellent experience! I can only wish that my childhood experiences could’ve started as well as those of our son. You know you’re in the right place when your child actually asks when he is going to see his dentist again! The warmth and professionalism of Dr. Z and his staff has made what we thought would be a difficult decision an easy one. We’re very thankful to you for all you do. Thanks again!