Doc Kelly and the Kelly Jorn Cook DDS team provide routine and specialized oral care in a child-friendly and comfortable environment.
Pediatric dentistry is appropriate from infancy through adolescence. Pediatric dentistry is primarily preventative dentistry and is considered the first level of defense against dental abnormalities.
Doc Kelly places special emphasis on preventative education for young and teenage patients and on establishing positive relationships. Our services are focused on age-appropriate dental needs. Your child's initial dental experience should be a positive psychological experience that sets a good foundation for life-long dental health.
Early Pediatric dentistry
Tooth Eruption-Baby's First Teeth
A baby's first tooth is a milestone for parents. The buds for all of your baby's teeth are formed before birth and usually begin to erupt by 7-8 months, although it can happen earlier. The rate and order of tooth eruption differ from child to child. Usually, the lower middle incisors emerge first, followed by the upper middle incisors. By the time a child is three, they will have most of their 20 baby teeth. The permanent teeth begin to erupt at around age 6, beginning with the molars and incisors. Teeth continue to erupt from this time until about age 21. The third molars (wisdom teeth) typically emerge at this age. Adults have a total of 32 teeth.
We provide age-appropriate Children's Dentistry, including:
- Emergency treatment
- Diagnosis and treatment of oral health problems
- Sealants – protective coatings that help prevent tooth decay
- Instruction & encouragement for proper brushing and flossing
- Prevention and education about dental decay and gum disease
- Creating beautiful smiles
- Sports guards – to protect teeth against injury and loss!
The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that children see a dentist by their first birthday.
The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends visiting your family dentist at least twice a year for a dental checkup. Routine dental checkups and cleanings eliminate plaque buildup and prevent tooth decay. When necessary, we provide fluoride treatments to help coat the teeth to prevent tooth decay. Routine checkups help detect oral health problems before the onset of symptoms.
Establishing good oral hygiene and healthy eating habits are critical in the early years. With routine dental care, a commitment to good practices, dedication to good hygiene, and a sensible diet, your child should reach adulthood without ever experiencing dental decay. America's diets of processed foods and sweets caused cavity rates to soar! The Surgeon General and the Center for Disease Control have announced an epidemic of dental decay not seen before fluoridation.
Baby bottle tooth decay, sometimes called nursing bottle syndrome, is when your baby's teeth begin to decay or form cavities. This problem happens when well-meaning moms and dads put their children to bed with a bottle of formula, milk, or juice to help soothe them to sleep. The sugars from these liquids remain on the teeth and combine with bacteria which are normally found on the teeth. These well-fed bacteria produce acids, which cause tooth decay. Not only is this unsightly, but it also affects your child's current and future dental health.
Here are some tips to prevent baby bottle tooth decay:
- Start early to help your child fall asleep without a bottle.
- After the final feeding, use a soft piece of sterile gauze or a soft baby fingertip toothbrush to wipe their teeth and gums. Since most babies like putting things in their mouths anyway, this is usually easy and helps introduce tooth brushing at an early age. If you must give them a bottle to get your child to sleep, make it plain water rather than formula, milk, or juice.
- If the baby falls asleep while drinking, remove the bottle or breast, and gently wipe their teeth and gums as described above.
- Never dip a pacifier in honey or sugar.
- Start offering your child a sippy cup at six months of age. Plan to have your child off of the bottle by twelve to fourteen months old. By this time, you can brush your child's teeth with water at bedtime.
Thumb/finger-sucking problems - Babies are born with a natural reflex to suck, nature's way of ensuring food intake. Sucking is also soothing and tends to induce sleep. Vigorous sucking can push teeth out of their natural alignment, although this is more likely to occur with a thumb. Orthodontists design most pacifiers to try and avoid the misalignment of newly developing teeth.
Most toddlers stop on their own between two and four, and up until this age, it is not recommended to make an issue of it. By the age of four, however, parents should begin to work with the child to break the habit. Children who are still sucking their thumbs when their permanent teeth come in can cause lasting damage to their teeth.
It is easier to break a pacifier habit than thumb-sucking because the thumb is always handy, while the parent can remove the pacifier. The easiest way to break a pacifier habit is in small steps. Keep it out of sight; remind your child they are big kids. Use it only when sleeping, then remove it at nap time, and use it only at night, then never. To break the thumb-sucking habit, the parent needs to monitor the child, using encouragement and praise. Help your child to overcome insecurity by making sure they know you are on their side and you are doing this together, not being demanding or impatient.