Child Health



Taking care of oral and dental health is very important, especially for children. Neglecting a child’s oral health may lead to many problems, as it may affect eating, speaking, playing, and learning. Children with oral health problems often miss school and receive lower grades than children who do not suffer from it. One of the most common childhood problems is tooth decay, but it can be prevented by following some simple steps.

Tooth Decay:
Cavities occur due to the breakdown of tooth enamel by the acids produced by the bacteria present in the plaque that collects on the teeth, especially along the gum line and in cracks on the surfaces of the teeth. They may develop into dental abscesses, which are collections of pus at the end of the teeth or in the gums.

How does tooth decay occur?
When the mouth is filled with bacteria that form a membrane over the teeth called "plaque", and when eating food and drink that contains a high percentage of carbohydrates, especially sugars, the bacteria in the plaque convert the carbohydrates into energy they need and produce acid at the same time, the acid can break the surface of the teeth, this causes holes known as "cavities".
Once cavities have formed in the enamel, plaque and bacteria can reach the dentin, which is a softer, bone-like substance under the enamel. Because dentin is softer than enamel, the process of tooth decay accelerates. Without treatment, bacteria will enter the pulp (the soft centre of the tooth that contains Nerves and blood vessels), nerves will be exposed to bacteria, usually causing toothache, bacteria can also cause tooth abscess in the pulp and infection can spread to the bone causing another type of abscess.

Risk factors:
A child may have a higher chance of developing tooth decay if:
  • Family members (older brothers, sisters or parents) suffer from tooth decay.
  • He Eats a lot of sugary foods and drinks, especially between meals.
  • ​The child has special needs.
  • The child puts braces.
  • Toothache is either a constant pain or a sharp pain without an apparent cause, and it can be painless at times.
  • Sensitivity of the teeth when you feel pain when eating or drinking something hot or cold.
  • The appearance of grey, brown or black spots on the teeth.
  • Bad breath.

Untreated tooth decay can lead to an abscess (severe infection) under the gums, which can spread to other parts of the body and be serious and, in rare cases, fatal.

The dentist should be visited regularly, starting from the appearance of the first milk teeth of the child (or when the child is one year old) so that dental problems can be identified as early as possible and begin to prevent further decay. Dentists can usually identify tooth decay and more problems through Simple examination or x-ray.

Parents should take care of the mouth of the infant (age 1-3) by:
  • Wiping the gums twice a day with a soft, clean cloth in the morning after the first meal, and just before bedtime; To eliminate bacteria and sugars that can cause tooth decay.
  • Using a small soft toothbrush and plain water when teeth appear.
  • Visiting the dentist when the child completes his first year to discover signs of problems early.
  • -Consulting your dentist first about using a fluoride toothpaste.
Oral And Dental Care for Children:
  • If the child is younger than 6 years old, parents should supervise the child and make sure that he uses a pea sized amount of toothpaste and remind him to always spit it out instead of swallowing it.
  • Help the child brush his teeth until he has good brushing skills.
  • Brush your teeth at least twice a day for about two minutes with a fluoride toothpaste.
  • ​if the drinking water does not contain enough fluoride; To prevent cavities, ask the doctor if the child needs fluoride supplements.
  • Accustom the child not to eat foods and drinks that contain sugars.
  • Make sure to visit the dentist regularly.

Last Update : 15 May 2023 03:41 PM
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