How To Avoid A Yellow Smile On My Kids

How To Avoid A Yellow Smile On My Kids

In today’s day and age, aesthetics are very important and they influence our self-confidence and sense of self, our social interactions, and our status; a big part of this is our smile. Our smile shows how we present ourselves to the world and can influence our communication with others in social and educational areas. We have talked about cavities, but today we need to touch base on another part of your and your family’s dental health, how to maintain a white smile.

Reasons Why a Smile Goes Yellow

There are several reasons why a child’s teeth can appear yellow, from the food they ingest to possible injuries that we should consider when this issue comes up. Here are some of the most common reasons:
  • Poor oral hygiene: When kids don’t brush and floss regularly, food particles and bacteria can build up on their teeth, causing them to stain and discolor.
  • Diet: Some foods and drinks, such as sugary snacks, sodas, and fruit juices, can stain the teeth and cause yellowing over time.
  • Genetics: Some children may be more prone to yellow teeth due to genetics. In some cases, the enamel on the teeth may be thinner or naturally more yellow, which can make the teeth appear yellow even with good oral hygiene habits.
  • Certain medications: Some medications such as antihistamines and other types of antibiotics can be known for causing tooth discoloration as some of their side effects.
  • Supplements: Fluorosis occurs when a child ingests too much fluoride during the development of their teeth, leading to white or brown stains or streaks on the teeth. Iron could also cause teeth to go gray.
  • Injury:  If your child injures their teeth, blood vessels may break and make teeth appear yellow, brown, gray, or black. After these types of injuries, the vessels within the teeth can burst and this can damage the tooth coating itself.
It’s important to note that while some level of discoloration may be normal, severe yellowing or discoloration may be a sign of a more serious dental issue and should be evaluated by a pediatric dentist.

Recommendations to Maintain a White Smile

As most parents know, sometimes the greatest solutions to most problems can happen in the form of prevention, so before having to correct any issues we want to provide you with tips to help your child maintain healthy enamel:
  • Encourage good oral hygiene: Make sure your child brushes their teeth twice a day for at least two minutes each time, using fluoride toothpaste. Flossing to remove plaque and food particles from between teeth is a practice that at least needs to happen every night before bed.
  • Limit sugary and acidic foods and drinks: Encourage your child to eat a balanced diet that includes plenty of fruits and vegetables.
  • Drink water: Water helps to rinse away food particles and bacteria from the teeth and can also help neutralize acid in the mouth.
  • Visit the dentist regularly: Your child should visit the dentist for regular checkups and cleaning as part of the maintenance of their overall health.
  • Consider dental sealants: Dental sealants are a protective coating that can be applied to the back teeth to help prevent decay and staining.
  • Avoid tobacco: Tobacco use can stain teeth and increase the risk of gum disease and other dental problems. Encourage your child to avoid tobacco products.
  • Monitor fluoride intake: While fluoride is essential for dental health, too much can cause fluorosis, which can lead to yellow or brown stains on the teeth. Make sure your child is using fluoride toothpaste and drinking fluoridated water, but don’t give them fluoride supplements unless recommended by a dentist.

What are Some Natural Solutions?

In case your child already has a yellow smile, there are some measures you can take such as professional bleaching when your child’s dentist can bleach stains near the surface of the enamel with a scrape, bleach, and seal technique. It involves applying a solution of sodium hypochlorite that works as a bleaching agent, and then a resin to block out future pigments in the coating. Many parents like to try natural options first, so you could try to implement some of these ideas at home to prevent yellowing and maintain healthy, white teeth:
  • Lemon and baking soda: To avoid plaque gathering on the tooth’s surface or remove some food stains, you might try a paste made of lemon juice and baking soda. Once per week, mix the baking soda with a few drops of lemon juice and have your child brush their teeth with them. Leave on for a couple of minutes before brushing again, and finalize rinsing well. This is a safe and natural method but since the lemon is acidic we don’t suggest using it too frequently.
  • Brush with baking soda: Baking soda has natural whitening properties and can help remove surface stains from teeth. Mix a small amount of baking soda with your toothpaste and brush as usual.
  • Drink water: Drinking plenty of water throughout the day can help rinse away food particles and bacteria from your teeth and neutralize the acid in your mouth.
  • Chew sugar-free gum: Chewing sugar-free gum after meals can help stimulate saliva production, which helps to rinse away food particles and bacteria from your teeth.
By incorporating these natural methods into your oral
Unveiling the Magic of Dental Crowns: A Tale of Smiles and Protection

Unveiling the Magic of Dental Crowns: A Tale of Smiles and Protection

Unveiling the Magic of Dental Crowns: A Tale of Smiles and Protection

Once upon a time, in the enchanting kingdom of dental health, there lived a remarkable hero known as the Dental Crown. This noble protector took on the shape of a tooth, like a tailor crafting a custom-made suit, and placed itself over the tooth to shield it from any further harm or mischief. The secret to its strength lay in a magical process where tooth crown materials were mixed, molded, and hardened in a mysterious lab.

But the magic didn’t stop there! These crowns were designed to blend seamlessly with their neighboring teeth, much like chameleons changing their colors to match their surroundings. Porcelain crowns, in particular, had a unique advantage – they could be tinted to mimic the exact shade of nearby teeth. 

Dental Crown Wonders

Now, let’s embark on a quest to uncover the mystical procedure behind these dental crown wonders. It was a two-part adventure! In the first chapter, the tooth had to be prepared. This involved a dental wizard performing X-rays to understand the lay of the land. An impression of your child’s mouth was also taken as a magical map. Then, with the skill of a master craftsman, they filed the tooth, removing any damage and reshaping it to welcome the crown. Another impression was made, but this time, it was for the crown itself. A temporary crown was crafted for the tooth, ensuring it stayed safe until the permanent crown was ready in the lab.

The second chapter of this dental fairy tale was scheduled for when the crown was complete. The temporary crown was removed, and the tooth was given a thorough cleaning and preparation. The fit of the crown was double-checked to ensure it was a perfect match for the tooth. With a wave of their wand – or maybe just a dab of dental cement – the dental wizard placed the crown on the tooth and sealed it in place.

Now, you might ask, “Was this magical quest painful?” Fear not, for the dental wizards were experts in their endeavors. They applied magical local anesthesia to the area before beginning their work, ensuring there was no discomfort during the procedure. But they also knew that each hero (or in this case, patient) had a unique journey, filled with different emotions and fears. So, they offered four different sedation options, making sure that every child’s experience was tranquil and comfortable.

The Enchanted Journey of a Dental Crown’s Lifespan

In the mystical realm of dental health, where smiles sparkle like treasure, the lifespan of a dental crown is a tale filled with twists and turns. These magical crowns can grace a tooth for anywhere from five to 15 years or even longer, but their destiny is influenced by a host of factors.

In this enchanted realm, your actions are the key to a longer-lasting crown. Practicing proper dental hygiene, embarking on brave quests to the dentist for regular checkups, and indulging in professional cleanings are all within your control, ensuring that your child’s dental crown shines for years to come. But beware, for lurking in the shadows are foes that seek to shorten the crown’s journey. Teeth-grinding dragons, gum disease trolls, nail-biting ogres, jaw-clenching giants, and those who wield teeth as tools to open bottles and packages can all hasten the crown’s retreat.

Our quest, dear parents and young adventurers is to empower you with the knowledge to safeguard your child’s dental treasure. We beg you to forge healthy dental hygiene routines in your homes and to be mindful of the treacherous temptations that lurk in the form of sugary snacks, sodas, and juices.

Now, let us unveil the mystical world of Dental Crowns for Kids, where the path to dental restoration takes shape. In certain daring quests, when a child’s tooth is more perilously decayed or damaged than a composite filling or pulpotomy can mend, we may embark on a grand adventure with a dental crown.

Your Child’s Crowned Options: A Magical Choice

Here at South Davis Pediatric Dentistry, we offer two illustrious types of crowns, each with its own unique magic. Our arsenal includes the formidable stainless steel crowns and the elegant porcelain crowns.

The Mighty Stainless Steel Crown: Hidden Strength

When the tooth in question lies in the shadows, hidden from immediate view, we often call upon the mighty stainless steel crown. Its strength is legendary, capable of withstanding the mightiest of bites and chews. It guards the natural structure of the tooth and rarely falls prey to the chipping or cracking that plagues lesser crowns.

The Whimsical Porcelain Crown: Aesthetic Elegance

Yet, the metallic visage of the stainless steel crown may not be for all. Some adventurers seek a more aesthetically pleasing path, and for them, the porcelain crown is the answer. These elegant crowns wear a white, pearly visage, making them the favored choice for teeth that grace the frontlines of the smile battle.

And so, dear travelers in the realm of dental wonder, you are armed with the knowledge to make wise choices for your child’s oral adventures. Whether it’s the resilient strength of stainless steel or the enchanting elegance of porcelain, each crown holds its own magic, ready to protect and adorn their precious smiles.

The Post-Crown Dental Quest: Guarding the Treasures Within

In the kingdom of dental adventures, once your child’s tooth is graced with a gleaming dental crown, a new chapter of care begins. Fear not, for it’s a quest your child can embark upon with confidence!

First, a word of caution – for a few days, we recommend steering clear of sticky, chewy candies. Think of it as a grace period for the crown to settle into its new role as guardian of the tooth. But aside from this short candy hiatus, life should return to its usual rhythm.

Now, let us turn our attention to the heroic guardians of your child’s oral realm – the gums! The dental crown, valiant as it is, doesn’t extend its protection to the gum. So, like vigilant knights, we must ensure that healthy gums are safeguarded. This requires the continuation of a twice-daily routine: brushing with a fluoride toothpaste for a full two minutes and embarking on a daring quest of flossing at least once a day.

With these noble habits firmly in place, your child’s dental health shall flourish, and their smile will continue to shine brightly in the realm of dental wonders.

And so, dear adventurers in the world of dental enchantment, we’ve unveiled the mysteries of dental crowns and their noble quest to protect and beautify. Remember, as your child’s smile continues to sparkle, these dental treasures stand ready, guarding their precious teeth with unwavering valor. As you navigate the journey of oral health, may your child’s smile be as radiant as a dragon’s hoard, and may their dental adventures be filled with joy and wonder!

New Year, New Dental Benefits

New Year, New Dental Benefits

With a new year and new objectives on the horizon, it’s critical to ensure that your dental health is one of the top concerns on your list. Your dental benefits will have been renewed in January, so you can begin using your dental insurance! Whether you are taking routine care of your teeth or considering a larger surgery such as braces, your dental insurance will assist you in achieving these goals. Make 2023 the year of your best smile!

What’s Covered?

One significant advantage of the majority of dental insurance plans is that procedures such as dental cleanings, X-rays, oral exams, and fluoride treatments are entirely covered without the need to meet a deductible. This means you can begin caring for your teeth whenever you choose. Perhaps you haven’t been to the dentist in a while, so the start of a new year is an ideal opportunity for a basic dental checkup and cleaning.

A ‘basic procedure’ is the second sort of dental procedure. During a dental checkup, you may discover that you have a cavity that needs to be filled or that you require tooth extraction. When these types of cases occasionally happen,  most insurance policies will cover 70 to 80 percent after reaching your deductible.  Coinsurance and copays will also influence how much you pay out of pocket.

If you have a deductible to meet, going to the dentist for more routine maintenance will help you meet that deductible, allowing your insurance to cover any big procedures you may need. Furthermore, your dental coverage may be beneficial in the long run. If you didn’t have dental insurance and didn’t receive regular oral checkups, you might discover later that you have a few cavities that will take a few months and a lot of money to fix all at once. It’s critical to understand that most dental insurance policies cover you for a maximum of $1,000 – $2,000. So you could have a variety of procedures performed until your limit is met.

Most dental insurance policies or health insurance plans will allow you to add on orthodontic insurance to cover these costs and make corrective treatments more reasonable for you and your family in order to receive coverage for orthodontic treatment such as braces and other corrective solutions. If you are thinking about getting braces for your child or yourself, talk to your family or local orthodontists about different insurance options and what they recommend for your life and goals.

Consider Opening an FSA or HSA to Save Money on Taxes While Also Receiving Necessary Dental Care

Flexible Spending Accounts and Health Savings Accounts (FSAs and HSAs) allow you to deposit a specific amount of pre-tax money for use on medical expenses, including dental, during the calendar year.

FSAs are sponsored by employers and can only be utilized once per year, whereas HSAs can be started by an individual, and the amount rolls over to the next year. You can determine which account is appropriate for you.

Regardless of the plan you choose, the ability to spend pre-tax money on dental treatment can help you compound your savings if you also optimize your health insurance advantages!

Get Your Dental Work Done in One Year to Meet Your Deductible!

If your dental plan has a deductible, you are liable for all treatment costs until you reach your out-of-pocket maximum. This is usually around $50 for an individual and $150 for a family. This means that if you require dental work, you should schedule it all at once.

Once you’ve met your deductible, it’s up to your dental insurer to pay for your dental care until you reach your yearly maximum. If you combine numerous procedures such as fillings, crowns, or dentures, you may ensure that you use the full amount of your advantages within a given year!

Fit Your Appointments Into Your Schedule

January is the most convenient month to schedule a dental checkup. Why? One of the slowest times of the year for dental offices is the few weeks following the holidays. Because your dentist is seeing fewer patients, you have more flexibility in scheduling appointments. You’ll also have extra one-on-one time with your dentist to ask him or her questions.

Catch Dental Problems Early

Keeping your smile healthy is mainly a matter of prevention. Cavities do not normally hurt in the early stages, but your dentist can identify them during your visit. You’ll be able to get them treated before they ruin your day with a toothache. Furthermore, you may save money by treating cavities with fillings rather than waiting for the condition to worsen and require a more expensive procedure such as a root canal.

Start the New Year With a Fresh, Bright Smile!

You’re not alone if you’re self-conscious about your teeth. According to studies, four out of every five adults dislike their smiles. Your dentist is here to help! Cosmetic procedures, in addition to cleanings, can help you achieve your ideal smile. Whether your teeth are discolored, damaged, gapped, or misaligned, your dentist may help you feel more confident in 2023.

We care deeply about your oral health and will do everything in our power to help you keep a healthy, beautiful, and confident smile. Getting a dental checkup as soon as possible in the new year allows you plenty of time to set smile goals for the next 12 months. Our dentists also love working with children and helping to keep their oral health in tip top shape, so book an appointment with us for your child today! Make 2023 the year you and your loved ones finally get the dazzling, brilliant smiles you all deserve!

Contact us at 808-948-8880 to schedule your professional cleanings or treatments. We hope to see you in the new year!


How Nutrition Affects Your Child’s Oral Health

How Nutrition Affects Your Child’s Oral Health

Have you ever thought about how your child’s eating habits could affect their dental health? We may not see the relationship between the two right away, but they are actually very dependent on one another. Just like your body requires a certain amount of vitamins and minerals each day to stay healthy, so do your teeth. To prevent tooth decay and other dental issues, children need to consume a balanced diet. All food groups are part of a balanced diet, and making smart decisions helps maintain good oral health.

As a parent, you want to make sure your kids are eating healthy, getting exercise, and doing well in school. Not only are there foods that your child should avoid, but there are also many foods that make a kid’s teeth stronger and more resistant to dental problems. Tooth decay is the most common disease among children, so providing a good diet in addition to great oral health habits like brushing and flossing goes a long way.

What relationship exists between a child’s dental health and nutrition?

According to experts, children require food from all of the major food groups to develop normally and maintain good health. Too many carbohydrates, sugars (found in things like cake, cookies, candy, milk, fruit juice, and other sweet foods and drinks), and salty foods and starches (like pretzels and potato chips) can all lead to tooth decay. The key factor causing tooth decay is how long carbohydrates stay on the teeth.

Here are some recommendations for selecting foods that are better for your child’s teeth:

  • Keep fresh produce around the house to serve as “healthy snacks” in place of processed foods. Pick produce that is high in water content, such as cucumbers, melons, pears, and celery. Bananas and raisins should be limited because they contain high sugar content. After eating these fruits, immediately brush your teeth.
  • Serve cheese as a snack or with lunch. Cheddar, Monterey Jack, Swiss, and other aged cheeses, in particular, encourage salivation, which helps remove food residue off teeth.
  • Avoid chewy, sticky foods. It is challenging for saliva to wash away foods that stick to teeth, such as raisins, dried figs, granola bars, oatmeal or peanut butter cookies, jelly beans, caramel, honey, molasses, and syrup. If your child eats these kinds of foods, encourage them to brush their teeth right away.
  • Serve sweets with meals rather than as snacks. If you’re going to give your kid any treats, serve them as dessert right after the meal. Around mealtimes, saliva production often increases, making it simpler to wash food from teeth. The liquid consumed during meals aids in cleaning off food residue from the teeth.
  • Encourage your kids to eat as few snacks as possible. More significant than the amount eaten is how often you snack. Saliva can wash away food particles that bacteria would otherwise eat if there is a gap in between meals. Regular munching without immediately brushing afterward gives bacteria constant fuel, which promotes plaque formation and dental decay. Try to keep the number of snacks you eat every day to no more than one or two. If at all possible, brush your teeth right away after eating the snack.
  • Eat less sugary food, so it doesn’t stick to your teeth. Because they continually cover the teeth with sugar, and avoid or limit gum, mints, hard candies, and cough drops, all of which promote tooth decay.

Buy sugar-free or unsweetened foods.

Never give your infant a bottle of milk, formula, juice, or soda to drink before bed. If your child needs a bottle before bed, fill it with just water.

Instead of giving your child juice or soda, give them pure water. Sugar is present in milk, drinks, and juices. Water helps wash away any food particles that might be stuck to the teeth and is safe for the teeth.

To help them develop strong teeth, provide calcium-rich foods in your child’s diet. Yogurt, broccoli, and milk are all excellent sources.

If your youngster chews gum, pick sugar-free or xylitol-sweetened varieties. Bacteria in the mouth have been demonstrated to decrease when xylitol is consumed, and chewing increases saliva production.

Some Tips on Brushing and Visiting the Dentist

  • Brush and floss your child’s teeth, and use fluoride. After age two or after your child can spit out and not swallow toothpaste, using a fluoride toothpaste every day is the best way to avoid tooth decay. Early deterioration is reversed by fluoride. Fluoride administration remineralizes the surface after the tooth has developed. This entails supplying the teeth with minerals again. Minerals support tooth strength, which helps ward off tooth decay. If feasible, brush your child’s teeth at least twice daily and after every meal or snack. If brushing is not an option, at least repeatedly rinse your mouth with water. To help get debris out from between the teeth and below the gum line, floss your child’s teeth at least once a day.
  • After giving your child medicine, remember to brush his or her teeth. Cough syrups and other medications include sugar, which oral bacteria use to produce acids. The enamel, the tooth’s outermost layer of protection, can be destroyed by these acids.
  • Regularly visit the dentist. By the age of one or within six months of the first tooth breaking through the gums, your child should visit the dentist for the first time. Regular dental checks will also aid in early detection of any growing dental issues.

Taking care of your child’s nutrition as well as dental health and all the other things you must think about as a parent can be overwhelming. Still, it’s well worth the effort when your child grows into a healthy young adult with a brilliant and healthy smile as well as a healthy body. We only want what’s best for our children, and starting young is the safest and surest way to ensure we are doing all we can for them. Kids love sweets, but as parents, we need to make sure we are limiting their sugar intake and brushing their teeth frequently to avoid the buildup of plaque and acids that can ruin those little pearls.

Please book a dental appointment with us today, and let us make sure your child’s teeth are well taken care of.

Tips For Infant Oral Care From Our Utah Pediatric Dentists

Tips For Infant Oral Care From Our Utah Pediatric Dentists

If there’s drool constantly dripping from your baby’s mouth and chin and she wants to put everything in her mouth all of a sudden, then congratulations! Your baby’s tooth is probably on its way.

While you might be concentrating on relieving her gum pain and providing her with the most comfort possible while she is teething, it’s also critical to start considering how to take care of those tiny pearls.

This is why: Babies who have teeth are susceptible to tooth decay and cavities. Additionally, children are more likely to develop cavities in their adult teeth if they have cavities in their baby teeth. Therefore, it’s crucial to establish a dental care routine early. Also, healthy baby teeth are super important because they form the shape of your child’s face, they make it easier for your child to talk more clearly, and they make eating and chewing easier. 

How might you go about doing this? We have some pointers just for you.

Infant Oral Care

It’s crucial to understand that a bacteria known as Streptococcus mutans is one of the factors contributing to some kids’ increased risk of developing cavities. Because it consumes sugar and produces acid that dissolves the teeth’s protective enamel, it is the primary cause of tooth decay.

Although this bacteria is not present at birth, studies have shown that babies can pick it up very early on through the saliva of a parent or caregiver. Streptococcus mutans can be contracted by kissing a baby on the lips, sharing a spoon, or cleaning her pacifier in your mouth. The more cavity-causing bacteria an adult has in their mouth, the more cavity-causing bacteria the baby will get. We advise parents or any other adults not to share a toothbrush or eating utensil with a child, or to clean off a pacifier with their mouth.

The way a baby is fed can also affect the condition of their teeth. Babies who go to sleep with a bottle of milk, juice, or a pacifier coated in honey or sugar run the risk of developing baby bottle tooth decay. When sugar builds up around their teeth while they are sleeping, it feeds the Streptococcus mutans bacterium, causing decay.

At this age, oral hygiene also plays a huge role. When a baby’s first tooth erupts, you should begin brushing it. The American Dental Association advises using a dollop of toothpaste the size of a grain of rice up until the age of three and a small, soft toothbrush to gently brush all the way around the teeth. The fluoride in toothpaste will help fortify tooth enamel, making it more resistant to decay. When using fluoride-containing toothpaste on babies and young toddlers who are unable to spit, you should use a piece of damp gauze to remove any excess toothpaste. Although the fluoride is not hazardous to their health, when developing teeth are exposed to excessive amounts of the substance, they can begin to appear chalky and white (dental fluorosis) so just be wary of this. 

By their first birthday or six months following the eruption of their first tooth, children should begin visiting the dentist.

Brushing Your Toddler’s Teeth

You’ll have to take the lead until your child is old enough to brush his/her own teeth, and we advise sitting cross-legged while holding your small toddler in your lap so they can gaze up at you. You get easy access to the rear teeth thanks to this.

Giving your toddler something to play with or watch can be a great distraction if they aren’t being cooperative.

Until your child learns to spit, you should be brushing twice a day and wiping away excess toothpaste with a piece of gauze.

Kindergarten and Up

You can start using a little larger, pea-sized dollop of toothpaste on the toothbrush once a child is able to spit. Children should clean their teeth twice daily for two minutes each.

And let’s not forget about flossing! The parent should be actively flossing their child’s teeth as soon as they come into contact with one another. This is typically the case when the child’s molars, which typically erupt between the ages of 3 and 4, come in.

Up until the age of 8, you should continue to supervise your child’s dental routine, as they might not have the manual dexterity required to reach every part of the mouth before that age.

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry advises consulting your pediatric dentist if your child is still sucking their thumb after age 3, as it may cause crooked teeth or bite issues.

Additionally, the American Dental Association advises seeing the dentist regularly and changing their toothbrush every three to four months.

Other Things to Prevent Tooth Decay And Promote Infant Oral Care

Make sure your toddler doesn’t consume food or liquids regularly during the day. Within 20 minutes of ingesting or drinking something, the sugar turns into an acid.

  • Only use a bottle at feeding time. Never breastfeed or use a bottle as a pacifier.
  • Avoid putting your baby to bed with a bottle of formula or breastmilk.
  • Take the breast out of your baby’s mouth if they nod off while you are breastfeeding.
  • Avoid night feedings and frequent, on-demand feedings once the first tooth erupts.
  • By the age of 12 months, transition your child from a bottle to a cup.
  • Once your child turns one, they are allowed to drink water whenever they are thirsty during the day. Give them only water at meals; do not give them other beverages.
  • Fluoride makes teeth strong and less prone to decay, so having your dentist put a cap of fluoride on their teeth may be beneficial

As soon as your child’s first tooth erupts, you should start teaching them proper oral hygiene practices to prevent cavities and provide the foundation for a lifetime of good oral health. Please give us a call today at 801-948-8880 to book an appointment for your infant/toddler and let us ensure that their tiny teeth are well taken care of.