How to Prevent Cavities

Close up child cavities

How To Prevent Your Children From Getting Cavities?

At Alderwood Children’s Dentistry, Dr. Dongkook “DK” Lim is a pediatric dentist dedicated to providing children in the Lynwood, Mill Creek, Bothell and Edmonds, WA, areas with the dental care they need. Our office is conveniently located in the heart of Lynnwood and proudly serves patients living in the surrounding areas. We want every child who visits us to leave our practice with a glowing smile. Our fun, upbeat and kid-friendly office, staff and children’s dentist help make that happen!

Our Lynnwood and Bothell kid’s dentist, Dr. Lim and his friendly team work hard to educate parents and their children about oral hygiene and best practices for preventative care. This ongoing education, combined with the pediatric dentistry services we provide, helps our patients avoid cavities. Keep reading to learn more about cavities, how they form, and what you can to prevent them.

What Causes Cavities?

A cavity is the result of tooth decay, which is a process that starts when the bacteria in plaque damages the protective layer of the enamel on the tooth. As the decay progresses, it continues to spread deeper into the tooth until the innermost layer of the tooth called the pulp is affected. It is at this stage of tooth decay that causes sensitivity, toothache, and pain when biting.

Our Lynwood children’s dentist advises parents on what they can do with their little ones to prevent decay. Some of the most serious causes of cavities to avoid include:

  • Eating or drinking before bedtime
  • Going to bed with a bottle in the mouth
  • Certain eating and drinking habits like frequent snacking and sipping milk, juice, and other sugary beverages
  • Regular consumption of candy
  • Not brushing and flossing before bedtime
  • Frequently eating gummy bear vitamins and fruit snacks
  • Avoiding Cavities

Without question, the best way to avoid cavities is to practice good oral hygiene. Teaching young children proper brushing and flossing techniques can go far in keeping their teeth healthy and strong. For infants, parents should clean the teeth and gums after each bottle feeding using a piece of wet gauze, a clean washcloth or a toothbrush designed for very young children. It is very important to make sure you do not allow your baby to fall asleep with a bottle in his/her mouth. Our Mill Creek kid’s dentist also recommends that older children should eat a nutritional, balanced diet, limit their consumption of sugary foods and drinks, and do a good job of brushing and flossing every day. 

Brushing Your Children’s Teeth

In order to prevent cavities from forming, ensure that your children are doing a good job of brushing their teeth after every meal and before bedtime. Proper brushing can reduce bad breath, gingivitis, and plaque.

Make sure your child is using a toothbrush made for children that has soft bristles and a pea-sized dab of fluoride toothpaste, preferably ones recommended specifically by your Bothell children’s dentist. Don’t forget to replace the toothbrush with a new one as soon as the bristles start wearing down. Your Lynnwood pediatric dentist recommends routinely replacing your child’s toothbrush every three to four months, as worn-down bristles can make it difficult to reach all the surfaces of the teeth.

Flossing Your Children’s Teeth

When the teeth are flossed regularly, tiny bits of food and plaque are removed from between the teeth and along the gum line to keep the teeth and gums healthy. Our pediatric dentistry practice recommends that children floss at least once daily, preferably at bedtime. When your child first starts flossing, it is normal for the gums to bleed a little. If bleeding persists after the first few times, let us know at your child’s next appointment.

Routine Checkups With Your Lynwood Children’s Dentist

To pave the way for a lifetime of good dental health, Dr. Lim recommends visiting our office every six months for a checkup and cleaning. In addition to helping children avoid cavities, these routine dental visits can also help children avoid developing serious health problems in the future, as oral health is linked to overall health. To help children keep their smiles healthy, our kid’s dentist recommends:

  • Diagnostic examinations
  • Teeth cleanings
  • Fluoride treatment
  • Restorations of decayed teeth
  • Therapeutic pulp treatments
  • Extractions
  • Treatment for oral trauma

Contact Your Lynnwood & Bothell Pediatric Dentist

Dr. Lim and our team at Alderwood Children’s Dentistry want all our young patients to enjoy the many benefits that come with having healthy and attractive smiles. If you have any questions or concerns regarding your child’s dental hygiene or overall oral health, please contact Lynwood kid’s dentist office or schedule an appointment online. We look forward to hearing from you soon!