Kids, Sports, and Dental Injuries

Kids, Sports, and Dental Injuries

Young kids playing soccerKids and sports sound like a formula for disaster waiting to happen. Children are natural thrill-seekers and often don’t understand the dangers that can arise when participating in sports.

In a particular study, researchers observed 62% of the 1,020 players studied sustained dental injuries from an unorganized sport. Moreover, 59.6% of these dental injury cases were from children aged seven to 12.

Interestingly, less than half of the studied participants wore mouthguards, and only two sustained dental injuries, indicating their effectiveness in protecting against dental injuries.

What Are Hazardous Sports and Activities for Your Child’s Teeth?

Sports are vital to helping children develop a strong body and disciplined mind. However, if your child is participating in any of the following activities, you should consider taking extra precautions to protect their teeth:

Martial arts and boxing: Fighting arts are excellent for teaching your children discipline and self-control. However, always ensure your child wears protective gear during sparring matches.

Stick or bat games: Athletic games like lacrosse, hockey, and baseball require players to run around with sticks in their hands. This increases the chances of accidental contact between sticks or bats and your child’s face.

Football: American football is popular among children and can be incredibly fun. However, it’s also one of the most dangerous sports in terms of dental injuries. Sometimes, players may not even realize they’ve been hit in the mouth until after the game has ended.

Ball games: Basketball is a popular competitive and close-contact game requiring players to move quickly and make quick decisions. This increases the chances of accidental contact with another player’s body or head, leading to dental injuries.

What Sort of Prevention or Safety Can Be Used To Prevent Dental Injury?

As a parent, you shouldn’t keep your child from pursuing their passion and keep them participating in the sport they love. The key is to give them ample protection to prevent unwanted accidents. Here are some ways you can protect your child from sports-related dental injuries.

Helmets: One of the obvious ways to keep your child’s face from injury is to have them wear a helmet. Helmets are necessary for sports like hockey and baseball and can also be used in other risky sports, such as snowboarding and skiing.

Mouthguards: Mouthguards are incredibly effective in reducing the chances of dental injuries. Even professional competitive players use them to prevent dental and mouth trauma. The key to choosing the right mouthguard is to ensure it’s a perfect fit.

Rules and Risks: The first two points refer to safety equipment to reduce the likelihood of dental injuries in sports. However, it’s vital to only allow your children to participate in regulated sports and teach them about good sportsmanship and the risks associated with different activities.

Are There Different Types of Mouthguards?

Mouthguards are available in various forms and styles. There are three primary types of mouthguards:

Stock: Stock mouthguards are often called “ready-made” because they are pre-shaped and don’t require any customization. This offers the least protection because they don’t fit your child’s mouth perfectly.

Mouth-formed: These mouthguards are also called boil-and-bite mouthguards because of the slight customization they offer. The dentist will boil a plastic mouthguard and have the patient bite and suck on it to fit their teeth. Boil-and-bite mouthguards provide a false sense of security, as the fit loosens over time and is easily damaged by biting.

Customized: The best type of mouthguard is a custom-made one. These mouthguards are created with exact molds of the patient’s teeth and are designed to provide maximum protection and durability.

What Should You Do if Your Child Experiences a Dental Injury?

Accidents happen, and not all injuries can be prevented. So what should you do if your child experiences a mouth or dental injury?


Call a pediatric dentist ASAP: If your child has suffered a dental injury, you should immediately call a pediatric dentist. This will help prevent further damage and ensure prompt medical attention is given to the injury.

Apply pressure to the area: For an immediate remedy, apply pressure to the site and have your child rinse their mouth with warm salt water. This helps reduce swelling, bleeding, and discomfort.

Offer an ice pack: Cold helps reduce swelling and pain, so it’s vital to offer an ice pack or an ice pop to help manage the pain.
Give pain reliever for unbearable pain: If the pain is too much for your child, you can give them over-the-counter pain medication, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen.

Prevent Further Dental Injury With the Right Dental Care

As a parent, we must help our children explore the world and all its possibilities. However, this often means exposing them to pain and risks. That said, there are ways to reduce the chances of dental injuries in sports and ensure your children enjoy their sports with minimal risks.

Mouthguards are an easy tool for you to help protect your children’s teeth and facial structure from the dangers of kids’ sports. Get your child set up with protection today at Bay Area Kids Dentist. The board-certified pediatric dentists at Bay Area Kids Dentist are ready to provide your kids with a positive, fun and educated dental experience. Contact us today for a consultation or appointment.

Summer Dental Health for Your Kids

Summer Dental Health for Your Kids

Child playing in water on the beachWe’re only a few months away from summertime, and you know what that means… a lot of sleepovers, camping, and vacation plans. It’s one of the times of the year when children can be children and enjoy more time with friends and family. 


Whether that’s consuming bowls full of sweets during sleepovers, eating junk food during movie nights, or tasting new desserts on vacation, your kids have a higher chance of slipping when it comes to dental hygiene. That’s why it’s important to prioritize their dental health during the few short months of summer. 


Importance of Regular Dental Check-ups During Summer


Based on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, cavities are one of the top chronic diseases children develop in the United States. What’s more, the risk of getting cavities increases during the summer months since kids can easily forget their routines. 


Without school structures during their break, taking care of oral health takes a back seat, increasing the potential of developing cavities. 


We can’t stress enough how important it is to stay on top of your child’s oral health and schedule those regular dental visits – even in the summer. 


Summer Is the Best Time for a Dentist Appointment


As busy parents, it may be easy to forget or to put off your child’s dental check-ups throughout the year. That’s why, summer is the best time for a pediatric dentist appointment. 


Without the worry of missing classes or causing stress on your child, the summer break gives you the perfect convenience and opportunity to book routine dental appointments. During this time, children have a more flexible schedule, so you don’t need to wait until the weekend comes around to go to the dentist. You can go during the weekday to accomplish this task. 


And, with all this extra time on their hands, you can focus on enhancing your child’s nightly oral routine to keep their teeth in the best condition possible. 


Tips To Maintain Healthy Teeth During the Summer


If you want further assistance in maintaining your kids’ teeth during the summer, here are some expert tips to help you out. 


Stay on Top of Your Nightly Routine


As we’ve mentioned before, summer vacation can easily disrupt bedtime routines. But no matter how action-packed your vacation gets, it’s crucial to stay on top of your nightly routine and continue to practice proper oral hygiene. 


We understand how hard it can be to resist the temptation of allowing your kids to skip flossing or brushing their teeth — especially when everyone is tired from a full day of activities. To combat this, set an alarm on your phone for dental care, supervise your children during those times, and help them out if they need it.


Always Bring an Overnight Dental Kit


You never know what can happen in the summer. It’s best to always stay prepared and pack a simple overnight dental kit wherever you go. 


When you leave your kids for a sleepover, make sure to check if they have their dental kits packed before dropping them off. In case they forget, you can save the day with your emergency overnight dental kit, complete with floss, toothpaste, and a toothbrush. 


Plan for Dental Emergencies


The endless adventures during summer only mean one thing: more time outside. While this can be fun and exciting, it can also open doors for injuries like cracked teeth while riding a bike, playing sports, or doing daring activities. 


These accidents are impossible to anticipate. What you can do instead is plan ahead. In case they have dental emergencies, know who to call and which clinic to go to.


Visit Board-Certified Pediatric Dentists at Bay Area Kids Dentist


Bay Area Kids Dentist offers high-quality, comprehensive pediatric dental care. All of our dentists are board-certified pediatric dentists and love what they do. 


Our goal is to provide a fun, positive, and comfortable dental experience for all kids. Rest assured that when you visit our dental clinics, you and your kids will leave with a smile on your face. 


Schedule an appointment with us this summer before the back-to-school rush begins!

What’s the Best Way To Find a Pediatric Dentist in My Area?

What’s the Best Way To Find a Pediatric Dentist in My Area?

child in dentist chair

If you’re searching for the perfect pediatric dentist in your area to care for your children’s oral health, it can be a daunting task — there are so many different factors to consider, and making sure that you find the right one is essential.


The good news is that finding a qualified, experienced pediatric dentist in your area doesn’t have to be overly complicated or time-consuming. To ensure your children receive the best dental care possible, let’s delve into factors to consider when searching for a pediatric dentist and some tips to help you.


4 Factors To Consider When Finding a Pediatric Dentist in Your Area


You may wonder, “Is there a pediatric dentist near me that I can trust with my children’s dental care?” The answer is absolutely! To make the search easier, here are four factors to help you identify pediatric dentists in your area.


1. References

When looking for a dentist for your children, it’s crucial to get reliable information. The best way to do this is to ask family members, friends, neighbors and colleagues in the area who they recommend. This will give you an idea of which pediatric dentists are most trusted and respected by those who know them well.


Additionally, if you already have an adult dentist you trust, they can also provide some helpful recommendations. Researching your options and gathering references can help ensure that your children receive the best care from a qualified professional.


2. Location

Finding a dentist within easy driving distance of your residence is vital when searching for a new dentist. If you find one who is too far away, it may be difficult to fit regular appointments into your schedule or get there in an emergency.


Making a list of all available pediatric dentists in your area and ruling out practices that are too far away can help narrow down your options. Additionally, talk with family, friends, and coworkers to discover what experiences they have had with certain dentists and how it was getting to their offices in a timely fashion.


Once you have thoroughly explored where each office is located in relation to you, you can decide on the most convenient dentist.


3. Certifications

You may have been wondering, “Is there an experienced and accredited pediatric dentist in my area?” 


Board certification is a voluntary process that dentists must complete to demonstrate their knowledge, skills, and experience in the field.


To become board-certified, dentists must meet specific educational requirements and pass a written exam. This means that if you select a dentist who is board certified, you can rest assured knowing they have been rigorously tested and can provide high-quality dental care.


Further, you can look for pediatric dentist offices with additional certifications, such as those from the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry. A dentist’s certifications and credentials are important factors when searching for a dentist in your area.


4. Meet and Greet

Meeting prospective pediatric dentist offices can be a great way to learn more about the services offered and the staff and ensure they will address your child’s needs appropriately. 


While asking questions about fees, procedures, and safety protocols is essential before any commitment is made, face-to-face communication regarding your family’s unique concerns can help ensure you find the best fit for your child. This ensures that a reliable comfort level has been established between all parties and can provide helpful insight into a more informed decision when selecting the right pediatric dentist’s office.


Closing Thoughts


For kids’ dental care that you can trust, look no further than Bay Area Kids Dentist! Our board-certified pediatric dentists provide expert care for your children.


Whether they need routine cleanings, fillings, sealants, or emergency services, our experienced team is committed to providing high-quality dental care in a warm and inviting environment.


We value open communication with our patients and their families and are dedicated to creating a trusting relationship that lasts for years to come. Contact us today to book a consultation and empower the dental health of your little ones!

Preventing Tooth Decay With Regular Checkups

Preventing Tooth Decay With Regular Checkups

tooth decay

Your schedule has been busy for weeks, taking your kids to activities and managing different obligations. After packed days and nights, you finally get a slower day and help the kids with their bedtime routine. But when you check their teeth after brushing, you notice some discoloration. That’s when you remember one place you haven’t been in a while — the dentist.


Tooth decay is a serious issue affecting your child’s overall health and well-being. It’s something every parent dreads, and seeing it for the first time can be alarming. But the good news is that it is preventable, and it starts with regular dental checkups. How knowledgeable are you about tooth decay and tooth decay prevention?


What Is Tooth Decay?


Tooth decay, as defined by WebMD, is the destruction of tooth enamel and the dentin layer. The first signs of tooth decay include tooth sensitivity and discoloration. Your child may feel discomfort when consuming hot or cold food and beverages. The tooth may already be decaying if you also see white to brownish discoloration on the tooth surfaces. Discoloration can also be black if tooth decay has already reached its advanced stages.


What Causes Tooth Decay?


There’s a lot going on in our mouths all the time. We breathe, talk, eat, drink, and more. And while adults may be able to handle the grind, kids may not. In most cases, it is a result of poor oral hygiene and the presence of plaque.


Plaque is a combination of bacteria, food debris, saliva, and acids. It sticks to tooth surfaces and gums and starts wearing off tooth enamel. It leads to tooth decay and cavities as acid attacks tooth enamel.


People who don’t have enough saliva are at risk of tooth decay. It could be because of medicines, diseases, or treatments. Kids who don’t get enough fluoride through toothpaste and toothbrushing are also at risk. Babies and toddlers who drink from bottles and have their teeth frequently exposed to sugary liquids can also be prime candidates for tooth decay.


What Does Tooth Decay Cause?


When left untreated, tooth decay can cause toothaches and lead to cavities and tooth loss. Toothaches are a common symptom and can occur when tooth enamel wears off. It’s also the first sign of tooth infection, which can lead to tooth loss and even infection of other teeth.


Tooth decay can also lead to cavities. Cavities are holes in the tooth and may need a tooth extraction to prevent further damage. Sometimes, a root canal or other treatments may be better solutions.


How Can You Prevent Tooth Decay?


Yes, all these tooth decay stories sound scary, but it’s possible to keep your kids away from the nightmare. As parents and guardians, you don’t want them to feel pain or lose their teeth. To prevent tooth decay, you can do the following with your kids:


Regular Dental Visits

It’s very important to take your kids for regular checkups and teeth cleaning. Dentists thoroughly examine tooth surfaces and can detect tooth decay early on. They can also give you the best advice for tooth decay prevention and treatment.


Get Sealants

It’s also recommended to have kids get tooth sealants. These are thin coatings that help protect tooth enamel from tooth decay. They can also prevent tooth infection and tooth loss. Your dentist can advise if tooth sealants are suitable for your kid.


Have Proper Oral Hygiene

Oral hygiene means brushing your teeth and flossing at least twice a day. Brushing helps remove tooth plaque and bacteria from tooth surfaces and gums. And don’t forget to use toothpaste with fluoride, which helps strengthen tooth enamel!


Have a Healthy Diet

Have a healthy diet. Avoid sugary and starchy food that can harm tooth enamel and increase decay risk. Instead of giving flavored or sugary drinks, use water for hydration. Give your kids plenty of fruits and vegetables to keep their tooth enamel strong.


Be Your Kids’ Example

Your kids look up to you, so be a good example of tooth decay prevention. Moreover, “regular” dental visits mean every six months, though some people may need to visit more often. When it’s time to see the dentist, whether during the Halloween season or the holidays, make sure to book your appointment!


No Tooth Decay With Bay Area Kids Dentist


Making kids love brushing their teeth and going on dental visits can be challenging, so what can you do as a parent? Having a board-certified pediatric dentist you trust can make tooth decay prevention so much easier. At Bay Area Kids Dentist, we make tooth decay prevention exciting and enjoyable!


Our dentists help kids have a super smile for life. We guide children and parents in maintaining healthy teeth and gums and offer services necessary for dental concerns. If it’s time for checkups, preventive sealants, or dietary advice, Bay Area Kids Dentist is here!

Let’s keep tooth decay at bay together. Book an appointment

How Can I Prevent Cavities for My Preschooler?

How Can I Prevent Cavities for My Preschooler?

happy boy child running in sprinkler

Does your child frequently complain about tooth pain? As parents, we want to do everything we can to protect our children’s health, including their teeth. Dental pain, possibly from tooth decay, can cause discomfort and pain to any child.


The best way to deal with this issue is to take step to prevent tooth decay altogether by visiting a pediatric dentist regularly and encouraging good dental hygiene practices. By doing so, your child can avoid dental pain from tooth decay and have better oral health.


What Is Tooth Decay?


Tooth decay is when tooth enamel is destroyed because of bacteria. The bacteria in the mouth makes a sticky substance called plaque. This plaque can eat away at a tooth’s enamel, leading to holes in the teeth. It may also cause tooth sensitivity and even tooth loss if left untreated.


Poor oral hygiene, a diet high in sugary foods, and not brushing daily with fluoride toothpaste can all raise a child’s risk for cavities. If your child consumes sugary foods regularly, it can lead to “acid attacks,” resulting in a hole or cavity. Cavities can develop if the enamel is weak, as it is no longer strong enough to protect the teeth against acids and bacteria.


Symptoms of Tooth Decay


It’s crucial to be aware of the signs and symptoms of tooth decay, so we can take steps to prevent it and treat it quickly. Common symptoms of tooth decay include:

  • Discoloration of the tooth enamel
  • Pain when eating or drinking something hot or cold
  • Sharp pain when biting down
  • Increased sensitivity to sugary or acidic drinks


As parents of young kids, it’s essential to understand the risks and treatments of tooth decay. If you see any of these signs, take your child for a dental checkup as soon as possible.


How To Treat Tooth Decay for Preschoolers


To treat tooth decay in our children, the dentist may recommend various treatments, including fluoride treatments, fillings, sealants, root canals, and even tooth extraction. Depending on the severity of the decay, the dentist may also suggest lifestyle changes such as reducing sugar intake and increasing oral hygiene habits.


It’s important to talk to your pediatric dentist about the best course of treatment for your child and any risks associated with the treatment. With the proper care and attention, we can ensure our children’s teeth are healthy and their smiles stay bright for years.


How To Prevent Tooth Decay for Preschoolers


To prevent tooth decay in our children, we can help them develop good oral hygiene habits, such as brushing twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste, flossing daily, and visiting the dentist regularly. We should also monitor and possibly limit their consumption of sugary and acidic food and drink and ensure they get enough fluoride.


In addition to these preventative measures, sealants can also be applied to the molars and premolars of children to help protect their teeth from decay. Sealants are a thin plastic coating applied to the tooth’s chewing surfaces, providing a barrier against bacteria and plaque that can lead to cavities. Sealants are a safe and cost-effective way to protect children’s teeth and should be considered as part of any preventative dental care plan.


When Should a Child Start Seeing a Dentist Regularly?


Now that you know how to treat and prevent tooth decay, you should also be aware of when your child should begin visiting a kid’s dentist. When a child’s first tooth appears, the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that they see a pediatric dentist within six months.


Parents can find more information on tooth decay by speaking to a pediatric dentist. With the right knowledge and preventative measures, we can protect our children’s teeth from decay and help them maintain a healthy smile.


Take Steps To Protect Your Child’s Smile


The right care and attention can ensure our children’s teeth are healthy and their smiles stay bright for years. To ensure your child’s teeth stay healthy, visit the board certified pediatric dentists at Bay Area Kids Dentist. With our expertise and knowledge of pediatric dentistry, we can help you and your child navigate the preventative and treatment options available.

Thumb Sucking and Pacifiers: How To Break the Habit

Thumb Sucking and Pacifiers: How To Break the Habit

baby with blue blanket and pacifier

Thumb sucking is not uncommon for infants. In fact, about 90% of newborns display various forms of this habit just two hours after birth. Using a pacifier is also very common and generally harmless for babies.


But at what age do these practices become troublesome?


Are they bad for dental care?


Do they have long-term effects?


We aim to answer these questions. Hint: They won’t do older kids any favors.


Ultimately, we want to help your child break the habit. Read on to discover just how to do it.


Why Do Infants Start Thumb Sucking or Using a Pacifier?


It may come as a shock to you, but babies develop natural sucking reflexes — sometimes even before birth. For this reason, thumb sucking and using a pacifier are habits easily developed. Below are some of the reasons why they do it.

  • Eating necessity: Newborn babies eat by sucking. Hooray if your child has already figured it out!
  • Calming mechanism: Sometimes, even newly-fed babies still need to suck more. Their non-nutritive sucking soothes them.
  • Availability: There’s another reason why babies suck their little thumbs. They’re always right within reach!


What Does Thumb Sucking or Using a Pacifier Do to Mouth and Teeth Formation?


Thumb sucking and pacifier sucking are not ideal for children’s teeth. A pediatric dentist can further explain some of the outcomes, like:

  • Jaw misalignment: Pacifiers come in all shapes and forms, some of which are unnaturally large for a child’s mouth. These scenarios push teeth out of alignment since the pressure from the cheek, lips, and tongue can create an open bite or posterior crossbite.
  • Slanting teeth: Pressure from a prolonged sucking habit pushes teeth out of alignment. The front teeth may appear flared out. Fortunately, a children’s dentist can help address this symptom.


How Long Can a Child Safely Thumb Suck or Use a Pacifier?


Don’t be alarmed if a newborn or infant enjoys thumb sucking or using a pacifier. After all, these habits are natural coping mechanisms for them.


The natural sucking urge typically drops when a child turns six months. However, some kids might still find comfort in these habits well past this age.


As a gauge, many professionals and even the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) agree that thumb sucking and pacifier use should be okay until about age three. After this timeframe, it’s best to help kids beat these habits.


How To Break the Habit


Remember, every child is different. There’s really no one-size-fits-all solution in helping them say goodbye to thumb sucking or pacifiers. However, here are some of the most popular methods parents and guardians use:

  • Ignore them: More often than not, children will naturally stop sucking on their thumbs and pacifiers. There’s no need to use harsh words or punishments to get rid of these habits.
  • Praise and reward: When your child doesn’t suck on their thumbs or pacifiers, applaud them for it. Treats like hugs, kisses, and high-fives are also most welcome.
  • Keep them busy: Sometimes, children use sucking to deal with boredom. When this happens, distract them with fun activities.


How Your Pediatric Dentist Can Help


Apart from family members, friends, and other loved ones, one more person can help you talk to your kids about thumb sucking and pacifiers: your children’s dentist. Regular visits can make all the difference in your efforts.


Reliable dental specialists can teach you and your child how to address changes to the teeth and jaw often associated with these habits. They are the ideal partner in such endeavors because they can give you tips and tricks for stopping the behaviors. Ultimately, the goal is to avoid expensive treatments in the future.


Usually, these strategies work well on their own. However, if necessary, a pediatric dentist can use an oral appliance to break these practices within a couple of months.


Book an Appointment With Bay Area Kids Dentist Today


If your child still sucks on their thumbs and pacifiers past age three, it’s time to double your efforts to help them beat such habits. After all, they may lead to dental problems like jaw misalignment and slanting teeth. If left untreated, these habits may require costly treatments.


Let the experts at Bay Area Kids Dentist help. All our dentists are board certified by the American Board of Pediatric Dentistry (ABPD). We know how to make dental visits comfortable and fun for kids of all ages. Plus, our dental assistants have a commitment to excellence and a warm demeanor.


We would like to help you and your child beat thumb sucking and pacifiers for good! Book an appointment with one of our super dentists now.

Teething Tips and How To Help Comfort Your Baby

Teething Tips and How To Help Comfort Your Baby

teething baby

Teething is a normal part of baby development, but it can be challenging for both baby and parents. As new teeth begin to appear, babies may experience pain and discomfort.


Knowing how to help your baby through this process can ease the distress it causes. We share some teething tips and ideas for how to help comfort your baby with teething discomfort.


Signs of a Teething Baby


A baby’s first tooth usually starts to show around six months. However, the teething process depends on the baby and can start as early as three months.


You may be able to tell if your baby is teething by looking for the following signs and symptoms.


Crying and Irritability

It’s normal for a teething infant to cry more than usual. Teething can be uncomfortable and cause an infant to experience pain, making them fussier than usual. They may also have difficulty sleeping or refuse to eat.



Drooling is a sign that your baby is teething. While all babies drool, excessive saliva can be a telltale indicator of teething pain. The excess saliva helps cool and soothe sore gums.


Chewing and Biting

When babies are teething, they may start chewing on their fingers, toys, clothes, blankets, or anything they can get their hands on. You may even see them biting their cribs or playpens to soothe the ache in their gums.



Teething can cause a low-grade fever in some infants. If your baby has a fever, contact your pediatrician for further advice.


Different Ways To Soothe a Teething Baby


The worst thing about teething is the pain and discomfort it brings to your baby. Fortunately, there are several things you can do to help soothe your baby.


Teething Rings

Teething rings are a great way to help comfort your baby, giving them something soft and safe to chew on. They come in many textures and sizes and can be filled with liquid or gel for relief.


Ensure the ring is cold, which can provide additional relief for teething gums. If you don’t have an appropriate teething ring, consider freezing a clean washcloth, plastic spoons, or plastic toy.



A gentle massage can do wonders for teething pain. Use your fingertips to massage the inflamed areas of your baby’s gums gently. This can help reduce inflammation and provide temporary relief.


Cold Food

Cold foods and drinks like yogurt, smoothies, or frozen fruit can be soothing for a teething baby. Just make sure that whatever you offer is age-appropriate and easy to eat.



Gels and ointments containing topical anesthetics are available to help relieve teething pain. Make sure to talk to your pediatrician about the best products for your baby’s age before using.


Pain Relievers

If other methods fail, you can opt for over-the-counter medications such as paracetamol or ibuprofen. Always check with your pediatrician first to ensure it’s the right choice for your baby and make sure you use the infant version.


With these tips in mind, you’ll help comfort your teething baby and make this process easier for both of you. The most important thing is to stay patient and understanding as you journey through the teething process.


Caring for Your Baby’s New Teeth and That First Dental Visit


Once your baby’s teeth start coming in, keeping them clean and free of plaque and cavities is essential. Start with a soft-bristled toothbrush designed for infants, and use water only to brush their teeth.


You should also make sure to schedule your baby’s first dental visit by age one or when the first tooth erupts, whichever comes first. A pediatric dentist can check that your baby’s teeth are growing correctly, offer advice on proper oral hygiene and diet, and answer any questions you may have about baby teeth and dental care.


Give Your Baby a Beautiful Smile


Teething can be challenging for you and your baby, but you can make it a little easier by understanding the process and how to help soothe your baby.


Visit the experts at Bay Area Kids Dentist. Our board-certified pediatric dentists provide world-class care and will ensure that your baby has beautiful and healthy baby teeth. 


Contact us today to schedule an appointment! 


Santa’s Watching: Don’t Let Kids Forget Dental Care During the Holidays

Santa’s Watching: Don’t Let Kids Forget Dental Care During the Holidays

boy wearing santa hat

The holidays are here. Of course, along with time spent with family and friends, that also means delicious treats! Cookies, candies and traditional sweets are present at every gathering and event. And while we’d never expect our kids to munch on veggies while everyone else was eating cookies, it is important to be aware of what all the extra sweets do to your kid’s teeth. 


Some of the worst foods for your teeth are unfortunately also beloved holiday staples. Because it’s especially hard for kids to avoid sweets and treats at this time of year, it helps to reinforce dental care around the holidays. Continued care of your kid’s teeth and gums can prevent problems that could creep up next year.


Here are a few simple steps you can take to ensure that your children’s teeth will continue to shine throughout the holidays.


1. Encourage Healthy Treats

While it might be difficult to break away from tradition, you can still find treats that can keep your teeth healthy. Fruits, vegetables, and nuts are all great choices. If you’re looking for something sweet, try to opt for sugar-free options like sugar-free cocoa or candy. While it will be impossible to eliminate sugar, you can try to limit the amount. Too much sugar can lead to cavities, so try to stress enjoying treats in moderation.


2. Drink Water

Staying hydrated is key to preventing cavities. Drinking plenty of water helps to wash away sugary residue and bacteria in the mouth. It also stimulates saliva production, which neutralizes plaque acids. Plus, there is no sugar in water, making it the perfect drink. So keep those water bottles handy and encourage drinking water instead of sugary beverages.


3. Brush and Floss Regularly

Brushing and flossing are essential to keep your kid’s teeth healthy during any time of the year, but especially during the holidays. Make sure to have them brush twice a day and floss regularly to get rid of any food particles that may be stuck in between teeth. And as more sugary foods are around for holiday gatherings, getting them to brush and floss after eating can help reduce the risk of tooth decay.


4. Regular Dental Visits

Keep those regular dental visits and checkups. If your child is scheduled for a routine cleaning or checkup during the holiday season, don’t skip it. Preventative care visits are so important for healthy teeth and they establish good dental care habits for your kids that will last a lifetime. During these checkups we are able to perform a good cleaning and address hardened plaque that may have formed and is not able to be removed with a toothbrush at home. We also check the development of your child’s smile and ensure their bite is developing properly. If we find anything, it is much easier to address them early while they’re easier to treat.


5. Don’t Forget Santa

Why not add a few tooth-friendly holiday gifts into the mix? Older kids might like an electric toothbrush or new water bottle, while a really fun, colorful toothbrush or toothbrush holder makes a good stocking stuffer for little ones.


Taking care of your kid’s teeth year-round is important for their overall health. By following these tips, you can help your kids enjoy the holiday season without compromising their dental health. 


If you are looking for more tips, or if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us at Bay Area Kids Dentist. We are always happy to help. Have a happy and healthy holiday season!

Baby Teeth and What Parents Need To Know

Baby Teeth and What Parents Need To Know

baby in high chair rubbing teeth

Having a baby is thrilling, especially for first-time parents. There will be endless “firsts,” like the first word, first laugh, and first steps. Another first that every parent looks forward to is the baby’s first tooth. When that first baby tooth appears, it’s a sign that your baby is growing and flourishing.


While baby teeth may be temporary, they are still important. Often parents are unaware of the importance of taking care of baby teeth, not realizing that they should care for them in the same manner that they would care for their child’s permanent teeth. So, what do you need to know about baby teeth?


When Do Baby Teeth Appear?

Baby teeth, or primary teeth, typically start to erupt between six months of age until about 12 months. However, some babies can start teething before they hit six months. By age three, all baby teeth should be in place. Take a look at this eruption chart, a baby tooth timeline that can help you track when your baby’s teeth should come in.


When all baby teeth have erupted, there will be 20 primary teeth, including:

  • Second molars
  • First molars
  • Cuspids/Canines
  • Lateral incisors
  • Central incisors


How Do You Deal With Teething?

Teething can be stressful for some babies. While it doesn’t hurt at all for some, parents can observe the following symptoms in others:

  • Red and sore gums
  • Mild temperature
  • Flushed cheeks
  • Rash on their face
  • Rubbing their ear
  • Gnawing and chewing
  • Dribbling more than usual
  • More fretful than usual
  • Not sleeping well


If your baby is having a hard time, there are ways you can make the phase more bearable. You may give them teething rings or healthy food to chew on, such as fruits and vegetables. You can also try teething gels if you find that nothing else is working effectively. Ensure you choose a teething gel designed for young children.


Paracetamol and ibuprofen can help with the pain, but talk to your baby’s pediatrician first. To comfort babies, you can massage their gums with a clean finger. To prevent rashes, wipe your baby’s face more frequently to clean their dribble.


How Do You Keep Baby Teeth Clean?

Every parent should remember that developing healthy oral habits for a child’s teeth starts the moment the baby teeth come in. Yes, baby teeth are temporary and will eventually fall out, but taking care of them is essential in keeping your baby’s mouth healthy.


Baby teeth hold space for permanent teeth and give your baby’s face a normal shape. They’re also essential for proper chewing and help in proper speech development. When you keep the baby teeth healthy, you also help the permanent teeth grow healthy.


When brushing baby teeth at least twice a day, use a pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste. Brush baby teeth in small circles, and cover all the teeth surfaces.


Some parents will find it hard to make babies love brushing their teeth. Be creative and try making it fun for them by singing or making funny faces. You can also let your baby chew on the toothbrush for a while to get them used to the sensation.


Try to avoid giving kids sugarsweetened drinks. And, for complete oral health, regularly visit a pediatric dentist.


When Do Baby Teeth Fall Out and Permanent Teeth Emerge?

At four years old, the jaw and facial bones start to grow, providing gaps for permanent teeth that are larger than baby teeth. At around age six, baby teeth begin to fall out, and permanent teeth start to erupt. The process can last until age 12. So, by age 13, all permanent teeth should be in place.


When Should You Start To See a Pediatric Dentist?

The best time to see a children’s dentist is when the baby teeth start to come in. Pediatric dentists can help you develop a dental care routine for your baby and ensure that their baby teeth are healthy. Dental visits should be every six months or as recommended by the dentist.


At Bay Area Kids Dentists, our services focus on the dental health of toddlers, kids, teens, and families. We are committed to providing an exceptional dental experience for every child, and we’re ready to check your baby’s teeth as soon as they emerge. Whenever you’re ready, book an appointment with us!

What To Do If Your Child Has a Dental Injury

What To Do If Your Child Has a Dental Injury

teenage dental injury

Dental emergencies for children can quickly bring parents to a panic. While taking the child to the dentist is usually the first idea that comes to mind, the interval between the injury and the dentist is a crucial time, especially for kids’ teeth. Here’s what you should know as a parent.

What Is the Most Common Cause of Dental Injury in Children?

The usual causes of dental trauma in children include falls, fights, and sports injuries. The last one is something you can guard against as a parent but the first two are mostly surprises for parents. This makes it more important for parents to be prepared in the event of problems.

What Should I Do if My Child Has a Bleeding Mouth?

This depends on where the bleeding occurs. If it’s from the lips, apply steady pressure on the area for a few minutes to stop the bleeding. Any blood coming from inside the mouth requires quick attention.

Your child needs to clear the blood first by gargling cold water to help soothe the wound. This should also help remove any dirt or debris that has settled inside the mouth. Once the mouth is clear of any blood, the inside of the mouth should be assessed to find out where the blood is coming from.

What Should I Do if My Child Has Dental Pain?

Blood is not the only indicator of an injury. Sometimes, there’s a significant amount of pain that your child will experience. If this happens, ask them to gargle cold water to clean out the mouth before assessing the damage. Ask the child to pinpoint the exact location of the pain. You can also perform a tap test to narrow down the cause of the injury.

How Do You Assess a Tooth Injury?

Right after a good gargle, have your child open their mouth for a quick assessment. Use your phone’s flashlight and check for the source of the blood or pain. Chipped, cracked, or dislodged teeth can be easily noticed through a physical check. Note that even if you don’t see anything, it’s a good idea to bring your child to the dentist if they complain of any pain. Hairline chips can happen and are best diagnosed by a dentist.

What’s the First Aid for a Knocked-Out Baby Tooth?

First, be sure to clear the area of any blood and check if your child is in any pain. Do not try to re-insert the baby tooth as this could cause further damage. A knocked-out baby tooth is less severe than a knocked-out adult tooth, but it’s still important to get your child to a dentist to assess any damage to the area.

What’s the First Aid for a Knocked-Out Permanent Tooth?

If your kid’s teeth are already permanent or if your child is over 10 years of age, the first step is to quickly rinse the tooth using warm water. Once clean, slot it back into place, making sure it occupies its original position. Grab a piece of foil and cover the tooth with it to prevent jarring. For added security, have your child bite down onto the foil so that it locks in place. Visit the dentist quickly!

What’s the First Aid for a Chipped or Cracked Tooth?

For a chipped or cracked tooth, have your child bite down on a soft cloth to prevent further movement. Use a cold compress to avoid swelling. From there, go to the dentist as quickly as possible to help assess and manage the pain.

When Should You Call the Emergency Dentist?

Severe swelling, knocked-out adult teeth, and any extreme pain warrant a visit to the emergency dentist. Difficulty breathing should be quickly addressed with a visit to the emergency room. This can happen if there’s massive swelling of the throat or if the blood pours down heavily which can block the passage of air.

How To Prevent Dental Injury in Kids

Mouth guards are the best way to prevent mouth injury if your child is participating in sports. Make sure the mouth guard is well-fitted and that your child understands the importance of wearing them during games. There are many guards available on the market including some custom fit options available directly from your dentist.

Should I Call the Dentist or the Pediatrician?

For a chipped tooth, seeing a dentist is usually best. However, if it happens often, a pediatrician may be an option for the job. Fortunately, there are medical practitioners who are dentist pediatricians, giving parents the best of both worlds.

Be Prepared for Any Dental Injury

Chipped, cracked, or knocked-out teeth shouldn’t be the only reasons for your child to visit the dentist. Annual checkups are strongly encouraged for all the stages of their dental health from the emergence of baby teeth to the onset of permanent teeth.

Ideally, you should bring your children to a dental clinic that caters specifically to children, guaranteeing that they’ll be able to properly work with your child. Places like Bay Area Kids Dentist help your child through the process while making sure that they’re developing healthy oral hygiene habits and positive attitudes towards dentistry! With a board-certified pediatric dentist, parents can rest assured that their children’s dental health is in good hands.