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Sucking on a thumb, finger, or pacifier, is natural for many young children. In fact, many infants begin sucking their fingers or thumbs prior to their birth. Most children do stop this on their own at approximately four years of age. However, some are reluctant to kick the habit.
Bleaching and bonding are a cosmetic procedures that can improve the appearance of teeth that are stained or discolored, chipped, broken, cracked, stained, or gapped. Bleaching successfully lightens most discolorations. With bonding, tooth-colored materials are attached, or bonded, to a tooth surface. It can be used strictly for cosmetic purposes or to repair cracked and chipped teeth, or to protect the teeth against decay.
A sealant is a protective coating that is placed on the top of teeth, which acts as a barrier against decay. Recently, studies have been published that suggest that composite sealants should remain completely intact for 12 to 20 years. Along with brushing, flossing, and regular checkups, sealants should become a routine part of your child’s dental care.
Your teeth are covered with a sticky film of bacteria, called plaque. Within this film, there are thousands of different types of bacteria. Of all these many different types of bacteria, only one causes tooth decay. After eating a meal, there are small crumbs of food in our mouths, just like those that you may see on your kitchen table. The bacteria eat these crumbs and produce harmful acid. This acid can attack tooth enamel for as long as 20 minutes or more. Repeated acid attacks cause the enamel of the teeth to break down, resulting in tooth decay.
Reports show that today’s youth have an alarming increase in the number of dental and facial injuries. Listed below are a number of typical dental injuries and what you as a parent should know and do if they happen to your child: