Protecting A Child’s Teeth From Early Loss

Helping your child protect his or her oral health for a lifetime can take diligence. Some parents may not mind keeping a watchful eye over their child's dental health practices. However, other than regular brushing and flossing, they may not know what to focus on.

Here a couple of additional suggestions to assist parents in protecting their little ones' teeth from early loss.

Have Your Child Use Mouthguards

Kids often participate in contact sports that can result in tooth loss. A simple blow to the mouth can dislodge a tooth. A mouthguard that is specifically designed to protect a child's mouth during rigorous contact sports and other rambunctious activities can help keep your child's teeth in place until they are naturally shed. 

If a primary or baby tooth is lost before its time, it can result in future problems with dental misalignment. Each baby tooth is holding the place of an adult tooth that will eventually break through the gums. When the baby tooth is not shed naturally and is lost early, the other teeth in the child's mouth may shift a bit, leaving too little room for the adult tooth to present. As a result, the child's teeth may overlap and look crowded.

Crowding can be corrected with braces or other orthodontic appliances. However, until it is corrected, it can affect the appearance and health of your child's teeth. The crowded teeth may be more difficult to clean, since portions of the teeth may not be accessed with a toothbrush. In addition, flossing teeth that are crowded may also be difficult.

In addition to a sports guard, your child may also need a night guard. Night guards are used to protect the teeth when a child suffers from bruxism or nightly teeth grinding. The guard acts as a cushioning barrier between the top and bottom teeth as they move back and forth in a grinding motion. Without the guard, the force of the grinding can cause the child's teeth to chip or crack. If a tooth is cracked so severely that the crack extends through the root of the tooth, the tooth must be extracted. There are no restorative options available to salvage it.

For more information about protecting your little one's baby teeth from early loss, schedule an appointment with a children's dentist, such as Brit E. Bowers, DDS, in your local area. He or she can assess the current state of your child's teeth and give you preventive tips to keep them healthy.