Back-to-School Dental Eval: Why It’s Important for Your Child’s Oral Health

Your child's oral health

Get ready for the school year with a dental check-up.

Are you busy getting your children ready for the new school year? Along with purchasing school supplies and new school clothes, make it a priority to have your child visit the dentist for their biannual dental oral health evaluation before the new school year starts.

Summer dental exams just make sense.

While parents may think of summer as a break from the norm for their children, scheduling one of your child’s biannual dental evaluations during summer just makes sense. Once school starts up, many parents and children will be busy with school, sports, and other activities, and scheduling a trip to the dentist can become a hassle. Why not take one thing off of your plate and come see the team at Sheppard Family Dental Care before September comes and you and the kids are booked up with activities?

Why are dental evaluations so important?

Even if you and your child brush your teeth religiously twice a day, a dental evaluation performed by the staff at Sheppard Family Dental Care is important because the dental team checks the condition of your teeth and this allows the dentist to catch any early signs of tooth decay. 

During the dental evaluation, your dentist will thoroughly check all of your teeth, making sure they are healthy. Your dentist may recommend X-rays during the evaluation because they can detect early signs of tooth decay. X-rays are also used to check the alignment of teeth. During the years when a child is losing their primary, or baby, teeth and their adult teeth are coming in, X-rays are helpful to check for any crowding that may occur.

A dental evaluation will also include a professional dental cleaning. A professional cleaning is important because plaque is removed that regular brushing at home can’t get to. Plaque is the hardened buildup of bacteria that can accumulate over time and cause tooth decay and gum inflammation.

Early prevention is key.

A biannual dental evaluation should be part of your health routine because exams are designed to catch any issues with your child’s oral health early. If the dentist notices any issues with your child’s teeth at their biannual evaluation, preventative measures can be taken to ensure your child’s mouth stays healthy. These preventative measures can save time and money, not to mention the pain of any possible dental procedures, in the future.

Are there any extra steps I can take to help my children’s oral health?

Besides brushing and flossing daily, and going to biannual dental evaluations, there are other options that parents can choose for their children to help keep their teeth strong.

Many dentists may recommend a fluoride treatment for children. Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral that helps to strengthen the enamel, or outer coating, of the teeth. A fluoride treatment can be done right in the Sheppard Family Dental Care office, often during your child’s biannual visit. A fluoride treatment consists of the dental staff applying a fluoride solution to your child’s teeth, and then letting it set for a few minutes. The procedure is painless and is done within minutes. Since children can have a hard time brushing their teeth on their own, many dentists will recommend the boost of fluoride to keep the teeth healthy and strong.

Another preventative measure that your dentist may recommend for children is a dental sealant. A dental sealant is an extra layer of protection that is applied to the molars of children to help seal out bacteria and plaque. Since teeth are susceptible to small fissures, a dental sealant can help seal the surface of the teeth, and according to some studies, can prevent up to 80% of cavities for up to two years in children who have dental sealants applied to their molars. Ask your dentist if a dental sealant is right for your child.

Visit the Sheppard Family Dental Care team.

The team at Sheppard Family Dental Care in Lawton, OK is always happy to see children and parents for their biannual dental evaluations. We take pride in making sure everyone’s smiles are ready for the first day of school (and picture day). If you haven’t seen us in a while, give us a call today to schedule your dental visit before school starts.