We are passionate about promoting good dental health to children. Our Oral Health Therapist, Simone, educates and empowers children with the importance of oral hygiene and prevention. Simone does her best to put children and young adults at ease when facing dental treatments.
Beachside Complete Dental Care’s range of children’s dentistry services include:
- Comprehensive oral examinations
- Orthodontic (braces) diagnostic packages
- Preventative dentistry including fissure sealants
- Removing Braces and fixed appliances
- Sports mouth guards
- Restorative treatment such as fillings
- Trauma management
We accept Medicare Child Dental Benefits Schedule for your children’s dentistry needs.
To help give you a picture of what’s involved in Beachside Dental’s children’s dentistry services, we’ve put together these helpful FAQs.
My child is scared of the dentist. What do I do?
Our team at Beachside Complete Dental care do all we can to help make your child’s visit to the dentist as smooth as possible.
Before you come in for an appointment, talk to your child about the importance of maintaining healthy gums and teeth, and explain to them that a dentist is a friendly doctor who will take care of them and help keep their mouth healthy.
Remember, your attitude towards seeing a dentist will likely be absorbed by your child, so if you groan about seeing the dentist, your child will pick up on those signals. Instead, make going to the dentist a no-fuss experience. Refer to the dentist by their name, rather than ‘THE DENTIST’ (so your child sees the dentist as a person) and consider planning a fun activity after, so your child can focus on that.
How do i keep my child’s teeth healthy?
There are a number of things you can do to encourage good oral health for your child.
- A healthy diet makes for healthy teeth.
Make sure your child’s diet includes plenty of fruit and vegetables, and that they obtain vital minerals from sources like meat, fish and dairy.
If your child is vegetarian you can still ensure sufficient vitamin and mineral intake, with a little thought and preparation.
- Keep sugar to a minimum.
Avoid added sugars in cereals and don’t let your kids add sugar themselves.
Soft drinks should be limited to special occasions (if at all), and fruit juices should be a treat too, as they contain high amounts of sugar. Encourage your child to learn to love water!
Avoid giving your kids sweets to take to school (lollies, cakes, muffins) and limit treats to weekends, when you can observe how much they eat and make sure they clean their teeth soon afterwards.
- Certain medications can affect the health or appearance of teeth, so it’s important to learn about any medications your doctor prescribes your child, and find out if those medications impact the teeth. This doesn’t mean you should rule out the medication, but there may be ways you can reduce any damage the medication might cause.
- Ensure good dental hygiene.
Set up a regular teeth cleaning schedule with your kids (at least twice a day) and aim to brush along with them so they see it as a normal activity, and you can observe their methods. There are numerous online videos showing correct brushing techniques to kids, and some of these videos are animated.
You can also let your child choose a coloured toothpaste or colourful toothbrush from the shop, so they own the process a little more, and it seems more fun.
If you can manage it, it’s good to get your kids flossing at an early age, so it doesn’t become a struggle later on. Also, regular trips to the dentist for check ups are vital in building a strong foundation for tooth care over your child’s lifetime.
My child’s teeth are crooked. What are our options?
If your child has crooked teeth, it’s worth getting in early to correct the problem while the jaw and palate develop.
We will make an assessment of your kids crooked teeth, and recommend the best solution. For younger children (before the age of 10), the most likely treatment will be a Myobrace ® or palatal expander.
The Myobrace ® is a guard worn in conjunction with a series of exercises. It can help correct a number of problems in the jaw and teeth, before they grow worse.
A palatal expander helps to widen the upper jaw, and a lingual bar to open the lower jaw, before braces are fitted in the future.
For children 10 and above, braces can be used and are available in metal or ceramic brackets. At each appointment, the braces are adjusted so they gradually realign the crooked teeth.
Braces are generally worn for between 18 and 30 months. Once they come off, your child will use a retainer during the day for a period of months, and then just at night in order to ensure their crooked teeth don’t move back into misalignment..
I think my child is grinding their teeth. How do I stop it?
You may have noticed a grinding or clicking sound when you’ve checked on your child at night. This is probably teeth grinding, and if left to continue, it can gradually wear down the teeth. Tooth enamel can be damaged and teeth chipped and worn which may cause hot and cold sensitivity for your child.
Additionally, teeth grinding can be associated with head, jaw, neck and facial pain. If your child complains of pain or tension in the face and jaw in the mornings, or they say it’s painful to chew, teeth grinding may be the culprit.
A dentist can check the state of the teeth for signs of grinding (bruxism) and let you know.
What causes teeth grinding?
Teeth grinding (otherwise known as bruxism) usually results from tension in the jaw during sleep. The causes for tension could be:
- Your child is stressed or anxious about something, leading to jaw clenching.
- The position your child sleeps in may mean their jaw is compressed, leading to teeth clenching.
- Your child may have an excess of energy and their jaw continues to be active during sleep.
- Problems like ear aches or headaches may be causing your child to tense their jaw because they are in pain.
Teeth grinding prevention
There are a few measures you can take to prevent your child grinding their teeth.
- If the grinding is related to stress, have a chat with your child before bed. Ask them if there’s anything playing on their mind and encourage them to talk it through before sleep.
- There are many techniques to help relax the jaw, and most exercises can be found on YouTube. Learn a few and do them with your child before bedtime. It’ll be good for the both of you. Here’s some sources to start with:
- Try applying a warm wet face cloth to the jaw before bedtime. This could be done before or after relaxation exercises. A warm shower or bath before bed also encourages relaxation.
- Ensure your child’s head is positioned correctly during sleep. You may need to assess their pillow to determine if it is too high or low for them. The neck should be in alignment with the spine, and the pillow shouldn’t be so hard it causes jaw compression, or so soft it’s no longer supportive.
Teeth grinding treatments
Your dentist will make an assessment of the severity of any damage the grinding is causing, and may prescribe a mouthguard for your child to wear at night. This will help keep the jaw in alignment, and ensure the teeth aren’t touching.
As mentioned earlier when we talked about correcting crooked teeth, the Myobrace ® guard can also help with grinding issues, as it:
- Helps to develop and align the jaw
- Corrects poor oral habits
- Optimises facial development.
In addition to wearing the Myobrace ®, your child does dental ‘homework’ in the form of the Myobrace education program—Myobrace ® Activities. The Activities, consist of breathing, tongue, swallowing, lip and cheek exercises, and are performed twice daily for optimal results. They help correct poor habits and train your child in better use of the mouth and jaw.
Contact Beachside Complete Dental care today to discuss any queries or concerns you have about your kids’ teeth, or schedule your child’s appointment with Stephanie, our expert in children’s dentistry.