Dr. Cima Mazar-Atabaki believes prevention is more important than treatment. That’s why we emphasize routine thorough examinations, professional cleanings, fluoride, sealants, x-rays (when necessary) and home care to prevent dental disease. Prevention helps to avoid serious and costly dental problems and is the key to a healthy, attractive smile.
Dr. Cima Mazar-Atabaki will do a comprehensive dental examination at your child’s first dental visit and a thorough dental examination at routine check-up exams.
Your dental exam will include the following:
- Examination of visual tooth decay
- Examination of x-rays to detect tooth decay unseen by the naked eye, cysts, tumors, and growth and development of teeth and bone
- Examination of dental abnormalities
- Evaluation of gum disease
- Examination of existing restoration (fillings and other previous work)
- Oral cancer screening
- Assessment of orthodontic needs
Professional cleanings (dental prophylaxis) is essential for healthy gums and teeth. Dr. Cima Mazar-Atabaki and her dental team will perform the following in your child’s dental cleaning:
- Remove plaque– Plaque is a sticky film that forms on the teeth from saliva, food debris and bacteria. Plaque, if not removed causes tooth decay and gum inflammation.
- Remove calculus (tarter) – Calculus is plaque that has mineralized (hardened) on the tooth surface, and is hard to remove with the regular tooth brush. A special instrument is needed to remove it.
- Polish and remove stains on the tooth surface.
Dental x-rays (radiographs) are essential for diagnosing dental abnormalities; some dental problems may go undetected if only visual exam is performed. Dental abnormalities including: cysts, cancerous and noncancerous tumors, decay between teeth, congenital missing teeth (born with missing teeth) and growth and development of teeth and bone.
Are dental x-rays safe?
In Dr. Cima Mazar-Atabaki’s office we use state of the art, low radiation, modern digital x-rays that emit 90% less radiation. Compare this minimal exposure to the risk of not finding a dental disease. Dr. Cima Mazar-Atabaki needs to prescribe diagnostic x-rays only when necessary.
Your child’s home care is equally important as professional care. Personal home care includes:
Eat balanced meals. Try and limit snacks, especially those cavity-causing carbohydrates and sticky candies. Try to eat healthy snacks like fruits, vegetables, yogurt, cheese, etc…
Ideally you want to brush your teeth after every meal. If you are unable to brush after every meal, then brush at least twice a day; after breakfast and before going to bed. Use a soft bristled correct size toothbrush approved by the ADA. There are a variety of techniques for brushing teeth, but one of the most popular ones is described here:
Hold the brush at a 45 degree angle toward the teeth and gums and gently press against the gums so the tip of the bristles goes in between the gum and the teeth. Then apply a few lateral strokes and roll down the brush to sweep the plaque away from the teeth at the gum. Repeat this motion a few times and move on to the next area of 2 to 3 teeth. Your brushing is complete when you have brushed all the surfaces of your teeth. Short strokes work best to get the plaque out of the grooves and pits of the teeth. When brushing the back side of your front teeth, hold your brush vertically to be able to reach the teeth better.
Your child should floss daily to remove plaque from between teeth and clean areas that a toothbrush can’t reach. Get 12-16 inches of dental floss and wrap it around your middle fingers on each hand, leaving about 2 inches of floss to work with. Then use your thumb and pointer finger to hold and slowly saw the floss in between your teeth. Curve the floss against each tooth surface and move the floss up and down then gently under the gum line. Make sure you move to a fresh section of floss for each tooth. For young children, who haven’t developed their manual dexterity, floss sticks are recommended.
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