Cavities in children are extremely common – in fact, about 20 percent of kids aged 5 to 11 have at least one untreated cavity, and 13 percent of those aged 12 to 19 have one or more untreated decayed teeth.
Cavities, also known as tooth decay or dental caries, can cause pain, infection, and even tooth loss for your child. Left untreated, a cavity can also cause longer-term problems.
But what exactly should you do about your child’s cavity? First, determine the underlying cause of cavities so you can help your child avoid them in the future.
Cavities develop as the result of bacterial activity in the mouth. Bacteria feed on the sugars and starches in the food your child eats. As bacteria consume sugar, they produce a strong acid that can eat away at the tough enamel covering teeth. Brushing and flossing remove the bacteria and the acid, but children do not always brush and floss as they should. Combined with a sugary/starchy diet, lack of dental hygiene greatly increases a child’s risk for tooth decay.
The very first thing you should do is get your child to a dentist as soon as possible. The dentist will perform a thorough dental exam and specific tests to determine if your child has a cavity. Your child’s dentist will then suggest a treatment plan that may include filling the tooth.
The dental team may also develop a prevention plan to help your child avoid cavities in the future. They may review proper brushing and flossing techniques, for example, and reinforce good oral hygiene habits. They will also help your family get on a regular dental checkup schedule, which allows your children to have the best teeth possible.
The best way to prevent future cavities is to address the issues that led to the first cavity, such as poor dental hygiene and a sugary/starchy diet.
Children look to their parents for guidance and will mimic their behaviors. When it comes to dental hygiene, act as a role model: brush your teeth twice a day, floss daily, cut back on starchy and sugary foods and drinks, and see your dentist regularly. Let your children watch you brush and floss, and observe their brushing and flossing technique to make sure they are doing it right. Follow up with your children regularly to ensure they are brushing and flossing as they should.
Instilling good habits when a child still has their baby teeth will do wonders when their adult teeth come in – not only will they have healthier teeth from years of proper care, but they will also know how to take care of their teeth for a lifetime of healthy smiles. What’s more, adult teeth are permanent and not as easy to fix.
If you suspect that your child has a cavity, contact our Austin dentist. We offer exceptional care for your entire family and are always glad to treat tooth decay in children and adults. We can also help you teach your child how to brush and floss properly to avoid cavities.
We have helped countless families just like yours, and we have years of experience in treating cavities in children.
Make an appointment with our Austin dental clinic today for a lifetime of healthy smile
At Solis Dental, we strive for excellence through quality care, sustainable practices and performance-driven results. We delightfully seek to improve your oral health to help you achieve your ideal self, so that you feel empowered to engage the world with a smile and inspire a perpetuating cycle of goodwill. We endeavor to create a welcoming and modern environment of solace and trust, where we can deliver a memorable experience, quality results, and comprehensive oral health to you, your loved ones, and our community.
To learn more about Solis Dental, please call us at (512)-846-3787 and join our journey on Facebook and Instagram @OurDentalSolis
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