Dr. Lauren Francis is a family dentist who provides general dental care in Hampstead, NC. At her dental office, Seaside Family and Cosmetic Dentistry, Dr. Francis and her team help younger patients and their parents learn more about pediatric care. There are several things you can do to make your child feel more comfortable and excited for their first visit.
You can read books with them about going to the dentist, review what the dentist will do on their first visit, and speak positively about your own dental experiences.
Our dental office also helps older patients treat unique problems that develop as they age. Worn, broken, discolored, or lost teeth can impact not only the appearance of the smile but oral health as well. We care for the smiles of adult patients to help them continue to maintain their health and the function and aesthetics of their teeth and gums.
Your Child’s First Dental Visit
We recommend that parents bring their children to the dentist after they turn 3. During their first appointment, we will examine your child’s teeth and gums and take x-rays to check on the progress of your child’s permanent teeth. We may clean your child’s teeth and apply topical fluoride to help protect the teeth against decay. Our team will also review how to clean and care for your child’s teeth.
During your first visit, Dr. Francis or another member of her team will:
- Examine your child’s mouth, teeth, and gums
- Evaluate oral health habits like thumb sucking
- Provide a fluoride treatment and dental sealants
- Teach you about cleaning your teeth and gums
- Help parents schedule regular dental visits
Please let our team know if you have any questions about caring for your child’s smile. Our team is here to help you better understand the oral health needs of your child.
Dental sealants are typically used on younger patients to combat tooth decay on the biting surfaces of the teeth. Sealants are made of tooth-colored acrylic coatings painted onto the teeth. They seal the grooves of the tooth and act as a barrier from bacteria, plaque, and tartar buildup. The treatment can last several years as it is durable and can withstand normal biting forces.
Geriatric Dental Care
As we age, there are several oral health problems that commonly develop. These problems often include discolored or stained teeth, damaged teeth, and even missing teeth. At Seaside Family and Cosmetic Dentistry, our restorative and cosmetic dental services can help patients get back to smiling with confidence.
Patients with a single missing tooth or even full arches of lost teeth benefit from receiving dental bridges or dentures. Tooth crowns, porcelain veneers, or dental bonding can cover and protect weakened, stained, or damaged teeth. Finally, our professional teeth whitening treatment can erase years of stains from the tooth enamel.
Family Dentistry FAQs
What’s the difference between a pediatric dentist and a family dentist?
A pediatric dentist is focused solely on dentistry for children. Family dentists are trained to provide care to patients of all ages. They’re able to treat all patients, whether they’re children or seniors.
How often should I visit the dentist?
We recommend that you visit the dentist at least once every six months, regardless of age. If you have more extensive oral health issues, we may advise you to visit the office more frequently.
How should I prepare for my dental appointment?
Before your dentist appointment, it’s recommended that you avoid eating for a bit before the appointment. If there are food particles in your mouth, it’s harder to clean, and those particles can irritate your gums and the rest of your mouth. If you do eat, be sure to rinse out your mouth with water or mouthwash before your appointment.
Why do primary teeth need care if they’re temporary?
Your primary teeth establish the state of your smile for the future. They’re placeholders for your permanent teeth, in addition to helping children speak and chew properly. If primary teeth are lost too early, permanent teeth shift and may become crooked or cramped.
Taking good care of primary teeth is what puts you on track for a healthy smile in the future.
Is fluoride safe?
There’s been a lot of talk on the internet about fluoride being dangerous. But the claim is overblown. In very large amounts, fluoride should be toxic. But the amount of water and toothpaste is beneficial for your teeth. Fluoride integrates with the dental enamel and helps to make it stronger and less susceptible to tooth decay.
Why is regular dental care so important?
Preventative care is the basis for our office. If you’re taking good care of your teeth, it means you’re less likely to have more extensive dental problems in the future. Without regular cleaning, you’re more likely to suffer from tooth decay or gum disease. Regular exams also help us catch potential problems earlier rather than later. All of these things help you to avoid the cost and time that extensive dental procedures can take.
Can I attend the dentist at the same time as my child?
Yes, we offer scheduling that’s convenient for families so that everyone can get their teeth taken care of in one visit. It’s also beneficial to help your child feel more comfortable. They can watch you get the care and realize that it’s not something bad. Having a parent sit with their child as they get care also helps them to relax because they know you’re there.
How should I take care of my child’s teeth?
At your child’s dental visit, we can show you the best methods to help your child brush and floss properly. Baby teeth are smaller and can be difficult to clean. We want to ensure you and your child know how to clean them well. We can also talk to you about your child’s diet and the best ways to ensure a healthy smile.
Call Our Dental Office
Are you looking for a Hampstead, North Carolina, family dentist? Contact Dr. Francis and her team for care at 910-335-4392 or schedule a dental consultation online.