Pediatric Dentistry: Tooth Decay

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Pediatric Dentistry: Tooth Decay

According to the Centers for Disease Control, 50 percent of children have experienced tooth decay by age 11 and 28 percent of children between the ages of 2 and 5 have already had decay in their baby teeth. In addition, more than two-thirds of 19-year-olds have experienced tooth decay. In short, tooth decay is a big problem, making pediatric dentistry all the more important for families in the Springfield, MO area.

What Causes Tooth Decay?

Tooth decay is caused by bacteria. We all have bacteria living in our mouths. This bacteria comes together to form plaque, which sticks to our teeth. Some of that bacteria breaks down sugary and starchy foods to form acid, which eats at the minerals of our teeth, eventually wearing away enamel. Our bodies produce saliva to fight this bacteria by way of dissolving the acid, forming a protective buffer and replacing some of the minerals in our teeth.

Tooth decay in children is commonly caused by frequent consumption of sugary drinks and infants falling asleep while breastfeeding or bottle-feeding. Our saliva flow naturally decreases at night, which in turn, diminishes the cleansing properties of the mouth for that period of time. This allows for increased tooth decay.

Many pediatric dentistry services are aimed at promoting ongoing oral health for kids and teens with educational and preventative methods for fighting tooth decay.

Common Areas for Tooth Decay Inside the Mouth

Tooth decay is most commonly found in the deep, dark grooves and pits of the back molars. Bacteria love to inhabit this area and unfortunately, it is a place we often miss while brushing.

Tooth decay is also frequently found in the tight spaces between the teeth. This area is difficult to reach with the bristles of a toothbrush, which is why flossing is so vitally important. A regular flossing routine can help prevent tooth decay and get rid of unwanted bacteria between the teeth.

One preventive pediatric dentistry treatment for tooth decay is dental sealants, which serve as a barrier to keep harmful bacteria out.

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 Pediatric Dentistry at Parkcrest Dental Group

If you are looking for a pediatric dentist in Springfield, MO, Parkcrest Dental Group is a great place for you. Our very own Dr. Scott provides pediatric dentistry expertise that will introduce your child to proper oral hygiene routines and help establish a positive outlook on the dentist. A healthy relationship with your pediatric dentist and oral hygiene practices will give your child a great start in the fight against plaque and tooth decay.

Contact us today to schedule your appointment or continue browsing our website for more information about our pediatric dentistry, sedation dentistry or orthodontic dentistry, among the many other services we offer.

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