Marie Tremblay, DMD · 193 Locust Street, Suite 1 · Northampton, MA 01060 Call Today: 413-584-7773
It could be our gentle touch and special way with kids. Our pediatric specialists and staff love children and are specially trained to put them at ease. At Dr. Tremblay's we teach you and your children the proper way to take care of their teeth and, just as important, they learn that going to the dentist can be fun and it is something that they need not be afraid of.
Several specific types of bacteria that live on the teeth cause decay. When sugar is consumed, the bacteria use the sugar and then manufacture acids that dissolve the teeth and cause an infection in the tooth. This infection is called decay.
Babies who go to bed with a bottle of milk, formula, or juice and babies who breastfeed through the night, are more likely to get tooth decay. Because the sugar in formula, milk (breast milk), or juice stays in contact with the teeth for a long time during the night, the teeth can decay quickly.
Fluoride helps make teeth strong and prevents tooth decay. If the water where you live does not have enough fluoride, your doctor may prescribe fluoride supplements (fluoride drops or pills). You would give these drops or pills every day, starting when your child is about six months old. Only give as much as the directions say to use because too much fluoride can cause spots on your child's permanent teeth. Also, be sure to call your local water authority and ask if your water is fluoridated. If it is, tell your dentist or pediatrician so that your child is not being over fluoridated. Children should take these drops or pills until they are 12 (or until you move to an area with fluoride in the water).
The Academy of Pediatric Dentistry now recommends that children be seen by a dentist by 12 months of age in order to achieve our goal of a decay free dentition. We welcome new patients through age 12. We will then provide dental care for your child through their teenage years and young adulthood.
For your child's first visit, we will spend some time just getting acquainted and answering any questions that you may have for us. We will then examine your child's teeth. At this initial visit, the teeth may be cleaned and then topical fluoride would be applied. If necessary, your child may have x-rays taken. During this visit we ask that you stay with your child for reassurance and to share information about dental health. As children grow older and have developed a trusting relationship with us, they enjoy coming into the treatment area on their own. We will also make recommendations for your child to receive adequate fluoride at home. Most important of all, we will review with you how to clean and care for your child's teeth.
What helpful information can you give me regarding tooth decay in infants?
Most importantly, don't nurse your children to sleep. Do not put them to bed with a bottle of milk, juice, or formula. When a child is sleeping, any liquid that remains in the mouth, even breastmilk can support the bacteria that produces acid and can harm the teeth. A simple pacifier or bottle of water is fine.
How do I know if my child is getting the appropriate amount of fluoride in their diet?
If you do not reside in a community that has fluoridated water or have the appropriate amount of natural fluoride in your well water, your child will need some sort of supplement in their diet. We can help you determine how much of a supplement your child needs based upon their age and current water fluoride level.
What is an appropriate diet for my child?
It is important that your child receives a naturally-balanced diet that includes the important nutrients your child needs in order to grow. A daily diet should includes the major food groups of meat/fish/eggs, vegetable/fruit, bread/cereal as well as milk and other dairy products.
Can my child's diet affect their dental health?
Absolutely. It is important that you initiate a balanced diet for your child so that their teeth develop appropriately. In addition, this will positively affect healthy gum tissue surrounding the teeth. Please note that a diet high in sugar and other forms of carbohydrates may increase the probability of tooth decay.
How do I create a diet that is safe for my child's teeth?
As we stated earlier, initiate a balanced diet. Analyze the frequency in which starch- based foods are eaten. These types of foods include breads, pasta, potato chips, etc. In addition, sugar is found in more than just candy. All types of sugars can promote tooth decay. For example, most milk-based products contain sugar. A peanut butter and jelly sandwich is a favorite for bagged lunches. Unfortunately, it includes sugar not only in the jelly, but also in the peanut butter. For less sugar and more flavor and nutrients, try replacing jelly with fresh fruit slices (apples, pears, or bananas) or chopped dried fruit. Go easy on the peanut butter, though — it's high in fat. Choose the “no-salt-added” kind for less sodium.
Should I eliminate all sugar and starch from my child's diet?
Of course not. Many of these foods are incredibly important to your child's health. Starch- based foods are much safer to eat for teeth when eaten with an entire meal. Foods that stick to teeth are also more difficult to wash away by water, saliva, or other drinks. It's important that you talk to our staff about your child's diet and to maintain proper dental care.
What is a mouth guard?
A mouth guard is comprised of soft plastic. They come in standard or custom fit to adapt comfortably to the upper teeth.
Why is a mouth guard important?
A mouth guard protects the teeth from possible sport injuries. It does not only protect the teeth, but the lips, cheeks, tongue, and jaw bone as well. It can contribute to the protection of a child from head and neck injuries such as concussions. Most injuries occur to the mouth and head area when a child is not wearing a mouth guard.
When should my child wear a mouth guard?
It should be worn during any sport-based activity where there is risk of head, face, or neck injury. Such sports include hockey, soccer, karate, basketball, baseball, skating, skateboarding, as well as many other sports. Most oral injuries occur when children play basketball, baseball, and soccer.
How do I choose a mouth guard for my child?
Choose a mouth guard that your child feels is comfortable. If a mouth guard feels bulky or interferes with speech to any great degree, it is probably not appropriate for your child.
There are many options in mouth guards. Most guards are found in athletic stores. These vary in comfort, protection as well as cost. The least expensive tend to be the least effective in preventing oral injuries. Customized mouth guards can be provided through our practice. They may be a bit more expensive, but they are much more comfortable and shock absorbent.
What are sealants?
Tooth sealant refers to a plastic that a dentist bonds into the grooves of the chewing surface of a tooth as a means of helping prevent the formation of tooth decay.
How do sealants work?
In many cases, it is nearly impossible for children to clean the tiny grooves on their teeth. When a sealant is applied, the surface of the tooth is somewhat flatter and smoother. There are no longer any places on the chewing part of the tooth that the bristles of a toothbrush can't reach and clean. Since plaque can be removed more easily and effectively, there is much less chance that decay will start.
What is the life expectancy of tooth sealants?
The longevity of sealants varies. Sealants that have remained in place for three to five years would be considered successful, however, sealants can last much longer. It is not uncommon to see sealants placed during childhood still intact on the teeth of adults. Our office will check your child's sealants during routine dental visits and will recommend repair or reapplication when necessary.
Which teeth should be sealed?
Any tooth that shows characteristics of developing decay should be sealed. The most common teeth for a dentist to seal are a child's back teeth, and of these teeth, the molars are the most common teeth on which dental sealants are placed. The recommendation for sealants should be considered on a case-by-case basis.
What is the procedure for placing sealants?
Generally the procedure takes just one visit. Placing dental sealants can be a very easy process. The tooth is cleaned, conditioned, and dried. The sealant is then flowed onto the grooves of the tooth where it is hardened with a special blue light and then buffed. All normal activities can occur right after the appointment.
How important is brushing and flossing after sealants are applied?
It is just as important for your child to brush and floss their teeth. Sealants are only one part of the defensive plan against tooth decay.
How much does it cost?
This treatment is quite affordable, especially when you consider the value of protection against tooth decay. Most dental insurance companies cover sealants. Check with your insurance company about your child's coverage.
What should I do if my child's baby tooth is knocked out?
Do not try to put the tooth back in the mouth. Apply pressure with a gauze to stop bleeding. Contact our office.
What should I do if my child's permanent tooth is knocked out?
Rinse the knocked out tooth in cool water. Do not scrub the tooth. If possible, replace the tooth in the socket and hold it there with clean gauze. If you can't put the tooth back into the socket, place the tooth in a container of milk. Come to our office immediately. Feel free to call our emergency number if it is after hours. The tooth has a better chance of being saved if you act immediately.
What should I do if my child's tooth is fractured or chipped?
Contact our office to schedule an appointment. Our goal is to save the tooth and prevent infection. Rinse the mouth out with water and apply a cold compress to reduce swelling. It's possible that if you can find the broken tooth fragment, it can be bonded back to the tooth.
What do I do if my child has a toothache?
Call our office immediately to schedule an appointment. To help comfort your child, rinse out the mouth with cold water. Use dental floss to remove any food that might be trapped between the teeth. If swelling of the face is present, please bring your child to the hospital emergency room.
What if my child bit their tongue or lip?
Apply direct pressure to the bleeding area with a clean cloth. If swelling is present, apply cold compresses. If bleeding does not stop, go to the hospital emergency room.
How can we prevent dental injuries?
Simple. Sport related dental injuries can be reduced or prevented by wearing mouth guards. Child proofing your home can help reduce injuries at home. In addition, regular dental check ups will contribute to preventative care.
Dr. Tremblay was born and raised in Quebec, Canada. She attended dental school at the University of Montreal. After earning her dental degree, she completed a one year General Practice Residency at Tufts University. Dr. Tremblay enjoyed working at the Tufts special needs program and decided to continue her education in Pediatric Dentistry. She completed her post-graduate Residency in Pediatric Dentistry from Children's Hospital of Michigan in Detroit in 2004 and joined Dr. Kantor's team in 2006. Dr. Tremblay is a Diplomate of the American Board of Pediatric Dentistry and an active member of the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry. Dr. Tremblay's three daughters keep her busy when she is not practicing dentistry. She enjoys spending time with her family and likes to travel.
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Marie Tremblay, DMD
193 Locust Street | Northampton, MA 01060
Phone: (413) 584-7773
Fax: (413) 584-7701
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