Showing posts from 2014

You Don’t Have To Be Perfect

While being a parent is one of the most important jobs that someone can do, no one is expecting you to be perfect. However, instilling great habits in your children certainly starts with you. Children eat what is in the house and what is available to them. By cutting down on sugar and increasing vegetables and fruits you not only decrease their risk of diabetes, obesity, and decay but you increase their desires to be healthy overall. “Those habits you instill,” Dr. Cameron Fuller says, “start from a very young age.” While you are anxious for your child to begin eating solid food make sure you’re including plenty of leafy greens and bright colors. Certain fruits and vegetables actually contain more water. Which is an excellent source of vitamins for children and theyI also help ‘rinse’ off their teeth after they have eaten. The   palate is ever changing in kids and therefore if you try one food and they don’t like it try it again at a later date. You ca

Make It A Habit Of 2015

New Year’s Resolutions Are Not Just For Kids The New Year is quickly approaching and while you are contemplating those New Year’s resolutions create some short-term goals that increase your child’s overall healthy habits. While what we do is model appropriate habits to our children, we also want them to learn how to make and stick to short-term goals.   Children need practice in making goals and taking the steps to achieve them. This is the perfect time of year for this lesson, says pediatric dentist, Dr. CameronFuller. Whether you want your child to brush and floss more regularly, join a sport, or eat more fruits and vegetables, they take their cues from you.   When creating a goal with your child it should be one that they are invested in. This will help keep them motivated to achieve it. Smart goals are ideal because they are specific, measurable, action oriented, realistic and time-bound.   “Once you have created the goal they want to achieve, you ca

Tooth Grinding In Children

It is unfortunate but sometimes in the middle of watching television you may hear a loud, squeaky noise. When you hear that loud noise and you go to investigate you find that your young daughter is grinding her teeth. While, the sound is loud and you worry about the overall health of her mouth there are treatments that Dr. Fuller can recommend. Children may grind their teeth for a variety of reasons. It may be nervousness, their teeth may not be aligned properly or it may be in response to pain. Some children who have cerebral palsy or who have been diagnosed with attention disorders will also grind their teeth. No matter what the actual reason is, drawing attention to it can actually make it worse.   Bruxism, or grinding often happens at night when they are sleeping or while they are under stress. The long-term effects of bruxism are chipped teeth from weakened enamel, which can lead to long-term problems with adult teeth when the baby teeth finally fall out.

Why Does My Child Need X-Rays?

When you take your child to visit the dentist on their six month check-up it may be recommended that you have x-rays completed. While there is a small amount of radiation exposure, the benefit outweighs the harm when proper precautions are taken.   Your pediatric dentist may recommend x-rays for your children for a variety of reasons. X-rays are an electromagnetic wave of sort lengths with high energy that passes through materials opaque to light. X-rays are used in order to see cavities between the teeth. Due to the small space between the teeth, a dentist with a naked eye would not be able to see if there are cavities developing. However, by taking an x-ray of the different areas in the mouth cavities are illuminated and treatment can occur. If your child is in pain due to dental decay and your child needs a pulpotomy Dr. Cameron Fuller may take x-rays in order to see how deep the decay is.    And radiographs may also be recommended in order to evaluate how muc

X-Rays, What You Need To Know:

There are numerous reasons why a pediatric dentist may recommend x-rays for your child.   For example, he might want to see how the permanent teeth are developing or determine if decay is impacting your child’s mouth. How often radiographs are   recommended depends on your child’s overall dental history.   Children who are at high risks for dental decay, such as children that lack adequate brushing and flossing practices or who have a sweet tooth may require x-rays more often than others. Another reason for x-rays is if your child has had an unfortunate injury to their jaw or teeth. When this happens they may require x-rays a few appointments in a row in order to determine how the injury is healing. No matter how often your child is in need of x-rays, the team at Pediatric Dentistry of Redlands and Associates will do everything they can to make the process as easy as possible for your child. For example, your child will be draped in a lead apron in order to

What Is A Pulpotomy & Why Is My Pediatric Dentist Recommending It

A pulpotomy is a procedure that may be recommended by your child’s pediatric dentist if tooth decay has spread, if your child has a cracked or chipped tooth and the root is showing, or if they are having sensitivity to extreme temperatures. This procedure should be completed in order to eliminate the pain your child may be feeling. During a pulpotomy Dr. Cameron Fuller will first explain the procedure to you and why he is recommending this course of treatment. Once it has been decided to go forward, it is a relatively easy procedure depending on how many teeth are impacted and the degree of decay. Dr. Fuller , your Redlands pediatric dentist, will carefully remove the pulp from the tooth after all of the decay has been removed. Next, he will sterilize the tooth and then place putty that hardens in the area to seal it.   If the tooth is a molar, a crown may be placed on the tooth in order to protect it. This procedure should usually solve the problem and allow you

Why Should I Have Cavities Filled On My Child’s Baby Teeth?

  While preventive dental care is critical to your child’s permanent teeth, it is even more important you provide dental care for their baby teeth if they end up with a cavity.   Baby teeth are important to the success of your child’s adult teeth. Decay, can spread and the damage it causes can last a lifetime. While you think that their baby teeth are going to fall out and the decay will be gone, this may simply not be the case. Decay, or dental disease, can spread.   " Decay in baby teeth can reach far below the gum line and create problems with developing permanent teeth," states Pediatric dentist Dr. Cameron Fuller . Once the decay is below the gum line into the roots of your child’s tooth, your child may be in an extreme amount of pain, but often they do not have the words or understanding of what is causing their discomfort. This means your child could end up needing a pulpotomy or more serious dental procedure in order to get rid of the tooth decay.  

A Lifetime of Good Habits

Flossing is the number one dental habit adults say they don’t do on a regular basis. While we understand the importance of flossing and the long-term effects of not using proper flossing habits, it doesn’t seem to impact the overall amount of adults that have established this very important routine. While we as adults are not flossing, we are inadvertently telling our children that it is also acceptable for them not to floss. "The habits we establish with them at a young age will carry over to their routines as an adult," suggests Dr. Fuller. A habit takes twenty-one days to establish. We have to start when our children our young and their first teeth are coming in. Make it fun for both of you and find floss that fits your needs and theirs, you’ll be more likely to remember to floss your own teeth and your child’s if you do. It is also important when first starting a new routine to complete it at the same time of day for twenty-one days, this will he

Cavities & Baby Teeth

 A cavity on a baby tooth may seem like an insignificant item that can wait for treatment. But that’s not  true. “Did you know decay can spread from baby teeth to your child’s permanent teeth?” asks pediatric dentist Dr. Cameron Fuller .   He finds a significant number of parents that have never been educated on the importance of taking care of cavities in baby teeth. “Even though baby teeth are going to fall out, they are setting the stage for your daughter or son’s permanent teeth, and severe decay can impact their overall health,” says Dr. Fuller. For example, your child’s cavity, if not taken care of, can develop into an abscess. An abscess is a collection of pus that pools in the tooth. It can cause severe swelling and infection. An infection that is not treated can end up spreading throughout the body and can cause severe pain. The unfortunate consequences are missed work for you and missed school days for them. A child’s smile also impacts their self-e

Smoking & Your Teen

Has your teenager come home recently smelling like a new odor that is not appropriate for their age? Have you shown them pictures of oral cancer and discussed with them the cost of cigarettes? It can be difficult as a parent to watch your teenager make unhealthy decisions that will impact their life forever. However, with these few ideas you may be able to help support them to make better decisions. The CDC reports “Thirty-two hundred people under the age of eighteen smoke their first cigarette every day,” (   Dr. Fuller of Pediatric Dentistry of Redlands believes that the best role models are parents. If you smoke, your teen is watching. Find out more about programs to help you quit from your general dentist.   Further research suggests you should begin to talk to your kids about the impact of smoking when they are young. Start the dialog when they are five or six and continue talking to them about the consequences all through High School. While you

Don't Sell Your Kids Short!

We come home from a long day at work and go through the motions of getting the kids to bed. We run the rat race of parenthood only briefly stopping for special memories every once in awhile. However in all of the day to day activities, it is important to stop and focus on the oral health habits you are teaching your children. Afterall, they watch what you do. If you go to bed without brushing your teeth, they’ll notice. However, if you implement a shared expectation that both of you will brush at the same time, for the same length of time, children will rise to the occasion. Dr. Fuller suggests, “Make it fun while brushing your teeth in order to increase their motivation to complete the task. Play their favorite song, read a story or put on a puppet show.” If you find that you are nagging them to complete the simple tasks of taking care of their teeth, especially after a long day, try changing the strategy. For example, if they brush their teeth without asking, read

Alternatives During This Holiday Season

           The holiday season is almost upon us, and while it is easy to make one more batch of cookies or one more pie this season we challenge you to incorporate fresh fruit into your holiday platters instead.   The increase in the sugar craze not only increases the risk of diabetes and obesity in your children, but it also increases their risk of decay. Dr. Fuller suggests, “More decay means more cavities, which can lead to increase in dental visits, pain and missed school.”               Instead of cupcakes, cut up some strawberries, melons and add some blueberries. They are easy to grab and enjoy without the calories.   “Or dress up some celery with your favorite raisons during this holiday season,” says pediatric dentist Dr. Fuller. While your children will burn more calories eating it, it also has a high concentration of water that increases saliva production. More saliva means that bacteria is not able to stick to your child’s teeth, while sticky foods l

Holiday Season

The holiday season is coming up and the store shelves are stocked with eggnog and holiday cookies. Are you concerned about your children’s habits? This holiday season try scaling back on the sugar treats and incorporate some healthy holiday alternatives. While eating during the holidays is a tradition you may also want to think about adding some physical activity to your list of family traditions.             “For example: a family holiday scavenger hunt around the neighborhood, a friendly football game or a potato sack team race can make this holiday season an unforgettable one,” says Dr. Cameron Fuller . “Or take a walk around the block with your dogs and children. No matter what activity you chose incorporating just thirty minutes of activity this holiday season with a few healthy options could reduce your weight gain while teaching your children healthy holiday habits.”             Often after eating, families will sit around and talk while children pl

Bottle Tooth Decay Do’s And Don’ts

 Bottle rot can impact your child’s baby teeth and have critical long-term effects on their adult teeth as well. When putting your child down for a nap,” Dr. Cameron Fuller suggests, “never putting them down with a bottle.” The milk they drink sits on their teeth and stays. The longer milk is on the teeth the better chance is has of producing bacteria that turn into acid, which then attacks the enamel of your son’s or daughter’s sensitive baby teeth.   Also, saliva amount decreases when your child is sleeping and therefore, there is a decrease in the amount of liquid that can help rinse the milk off their teeth.   Never dip the tip of the bottle in sugar or syrup. While, this may seem like a great idea if your baby is fussy and refusing a bottle, it actually increases the amount of bacteria producing acid.   Dr. Fuller of Pediatric Dentistry of Redlands and Associates recommends that parents not fill the bottle with sugary drinks or juice.   When your child is drinki

The Facts About Bottle Tooth Decay

“Bottle rot or baby bottle tooth decay is caused when milk sits on your baby’s teeth for an extensive amount of time,” says pediatric dentist, Dr. Cameron Fuller. Milk and other sweet liquids have sugar in them.   The sugar turns to bacteria, which then convert to acid, and the acid attacks the enamel. Although, your child’s teeth may be below the gum line, they can still be impacted by early habits     Bottle tooth decay occurs more often on the top front teeth, however decay can impact any teeth if not taken care of or if good bottle habits are not developed from an early age. If your child has decay from bottle rot it is important to take care of the problem right away, as leaving the decay in their mouth can impact them in multiple ways including creating pain, a decrease in overall health and it could even result in tooth extractions. While baby teeth may not seem important, if your child does not have a healthy mouth it can cause problems for them when you

When Should I Use Toothpaste With My Kids

As your baby grows and matures you may not think of teeth brushing as a natural process that has specific milestones, however there are.   You will want to brush your baby’s gums with a small washcloth until their first tooth erupts.   At that point it is time to find an appropriate sized and shaped brush to use. It is not necessary to use toothpaste, and in fact you should not use paste until they are at an age where they are able to spit.   Once your child has the ability to spit toothpaste out, find a brand and flavor that works for you and your child. Using a small amount of toothpaste is best – think pearl sized. You do not want too much on the toothbrush or their teeth as it will make it more difficult for them to get all of it out of their mouth and they run the risk of swallowing more of it. It is not good for your child to ingest fluoride, but flouride in your child’s toothpast can help strengthen your child’s teeth by helping to protect them

What Type Of Toothbrush Is Appropriate For My Kids

  When you stand in the aisle at the grocery store, you are bombarded with multiple toothbrush choices. There are ones that sing, and some that rotate. Others may vibrate and still others may seem boring – those in one color and with soft bristles. Toothbrush choices to some extent are a personal preference. You don’t want it to be too big or too small. Dr. Fuller recommends, "making sure the handle fits well in their hand and that the head of the toothbrush can go comfortably in their mouth,".   The bristles should be soft. Hard or stiff bristles can damage the gums and teeth if too much pressure is applied.   The age of your child makes a difference on the appropriate type of toothbrush you should purchase. Children under the age of twelve can have a difficult time with dexterity and reaching all of the surface locations of their teeth. An automatic toothbrush does make getting to all the surfaces easier. Depending on the size of the automatic

Types of Fillings

 There are different types of substances that can be used in order to fill a cavity. Dr. Fuller will provide the substance that best fits the needs of your child and your family.    The purpose of a filling is to protect against further decay that can impact the root. Amalgam fillings are made up of mercury, copper, tin and silver. They have been around for a long time.   The other type of material that is often used is called a composite filling. Composite fillings are white in color and they require less preparation.   One of the main advantages of composite fillings is that they can be matched to your child’s other teeth color.   The material is less controversial in children.    Composite fillings are strong and can protect your children’s teeth from further decay. When you find out your child has a cavity and is in need of a filling the first time, it can be scary, but it does not have to be. There are a variety of options for numbing and Dr. Cam

Halloween Candy

While the tradition of your child dressing up on Halloween night can be fun and a great memory, the candy they eat can create long lasting damage.   " In order to protect your child from tooth decay you should limit the amount of sugar they eat and how long it stays on their teeth," suggests pediatric dentist Dr. Cameron Fuller . Bacteria turns into acid and the acid then attacks tooth enamel on the teeth.   Soon after candy is consumed provide an opportunity to brush and floss in order to wash away the substances stuck on their teeth. While millions of children run around the neighborhood gathering as much candy as they can, you as the parent can help develop healthy habits by having them brush and floss right after they consume any candy. "You can also limit the amount of overall sugar they eat on Halloween night and each day after," Dr. Fuller. Certain types of candy are worse for teeth than others. For example, avoid

Halloween & The Impact On Your Child's Teeth

Billions of children will dress up this Halloween and participate in running around the neighborhoods gathering as much candy as can fill their bags. The next day you might find your little ones breaking into that candy stash early in the morning. On average, 2.08 billion dollars will be spent on candy, while the average kid consumes over seven thousand calories on this special day and three cups of sugar. "This excessive amount of sugar consumed can lead to unhealthy habits later on," says Dr. Cameron Fuller.   How can you trade your child’s treat-or-treat habits into something more positive? Some families have their children trade in their treats for something else. For example, a toy at the store they have been wanting or a trip to a local favorite restaurant for a healthy food alternative.   Take your child to less houses. You can hit the few on your block and stick to a small radius.  Provide a smaller bag or container for your child. It is

Exploring new procedure with the Laser.

Recently, we were referred a patient to have an unerupted tooth exposed to expedite the placement of the orthodontic brackets (braces).   In the past, I would have to use a scalpel blade to make an incision and expose the hidden tooth . Yes, there would be a little bleeding, and healing time involved and slight discomfort for the patient.  But now, we have a laser!  The laser replaces the scalpel blade, reducing bleeding to none and decreases healing time.  After the laser treatment to expose the unerupted tooth, the patient was able to return to the orthodontist and have the brackets placed immediately. Maxillary Anterior Labial Frenum Lingual Frenum (aka tongue tied) What other treatment procedures can be done with a laser?   Frenectomies (Labial and Lingual)

More Serious Causes of Bad Breath:

            While bad breath can impact our children on a regular basis some of the reasons are simple with a simple fix, mentioned in Monday’s blog. However, sometimes there are more serious causes that parents should be aware of. Your child may have an infection, more serious disease or other mouth or throat condition, or their bad breath may be due to a medication they are currently taking.   No matter the cause, if bad breath persists and does not go away with increased brushing and flossing, or if your child already has good brushing and flossing habits, Dr. Cameron Fuller recommends making an appointment with a pediatric dentist to have them evaluated.             Certain medications cause a dry mouth.   Saliva helps clean and remove particles in the mouth. If your son or daughter’s mouth is really dry due to a medication the food particles may stay on the teeth longer building up and causing bad breath to occur.                Cancer and other ch

What Causes Bad Breath In Kids

Bad breath or Halitosis as it is officially called, can impact children for a variety of reasons.   You may notice it when they first wake up in the morning or when they’ve been running around outside. There a numerous causes of bad breath and each one may need to be treated differently depending on the cause. However, one thing is for certain bad breath should not be ignored. A few of the reasons your child may have bad breath: Food is the number one contributor of bad breath. Onions, Doritos and other strong tasting food leave their smell behind because once the food is digested it enters your bloodstream and is carried to your lungs. “Food that is left in your mouth can increase the amount of bacteria that is in floating around stuck to your teeth and gums,” says Dr. Cameron Fuller. The increase of bacteria causes odor-smelling vapors to release when your child is talking. Don’t be discouraged there is an easy fix to this type of problem. Have your child brush