Healthy dental habits start when you are young and lead to life-long positive dental outcomes. But a high sugar diet and infrequent brushing and flossing can often mean that kids experience dental issues that can lead to more serious problems in the future.
Here are some of the most common kids’ teeth problems and how to manage them.
Common Childhood Dental Problems
One of the most common dental problems seen in children is increased tooth sensitivity. Kids may experience a sharp, uncomfortable sensation when eating or drinking cold, hot, or sugary substances. Inhaling cold air can also cause sensitivity in your child’s teeth.
Sensitivity is typically caused by dental erosion due to a diet high in sugar and acidic foods and drinks, such as fruit juice and carbonated beverages. The acid in the foods wears down the protective enamel layer and prevents tooth remineralisation.
Tooth decay is the leading cause of early tooth loss in kids. It is caused by a buildup of plaque, a sticky biofilm made from a combination of bacteria and sugar, that damages the tooth enamel and creates tiny holes. If left untreated, cavities can lead to more serious dental problems, including infection of the root canal and tooth abscess.
Malocclusion is a misalignment of the teeth that causes an abnormal bite pattern. It is one of many common kids teeth problems and is characterised by tooth crookedness and difficulty eating and speaking. Your child’s teeth are vulnerable to malocclusion due to the small size of their jaw, and the rapid development of their teeth in their first few years of life.
Thumb sucking is a reflex that develops in early infancy as a form of comfort. While this habit is not an issue for children under five, it may cause alignment problems for your child’s teeth if it continues after this age.
Sucking on their thumb or another digit places pressure on the front teeth, causing them to gradually become misaligned and leading to protrusion and an overbite. They may need correction with orthodontic treatment.
Tongue thrusting is an abnormal swallowing pattern caused by a dysfunctional muscle disorder, resulting in the tongue resting against the front teeth. Over time this can lead to an issue known as an open bite, in which the front teeth on the upper and lower dental arches don’t meet when the mouth is closed.
Treating Kids Teeth Problems
While your child may outgrow some dental problems, others should be addressed to prevent further damage to your child’s teeth. Some of the treatments we offer at Glebe Dental Group include:
Exams and Cleaning
The best way to address kids teeth problems is with preventative care. We offer gentle examinations to assess tooth and gum development. Exams also provide an opportunity for your child to become familiar with the dental practice environment to reduce anxiety.
Fissure sealants are a clear or white composite resin that forms a protective layer on your child’s teeth. They are applied to your child’s back molars to minimise damage to the chewing surface and reduce the risk of tooth decay.
If your child suffers from tooth decay, we offer colour-matched white fillings to restore the look and function of your child’s teeth.
Many young children outgrow misalignment as they grow and lose their milk teeth. However, for persistent malocclusion, we offer Invisalign clear aligners, traditional braces, and rapid orthodontics.
Visit the Glebe Dental Group to Protect Your Child’s Teeth
Regular visits to the dentist for an exam and cleaning can help address kids teeth problems before they become more serious issues. Spare your child unnecessary discomfort and save yourself time and money by calling the Glebe Dental Group on (02) 9159 6816 to schedule your child’s appointment with our friendly staff.