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Oral health is imperative to your child’s overall wellbeing, as a healthy mouth goes hand-in-hand with a healthy child. Unfortunately, cavities are one of the most common issues that negatively affect our children’s oral health. In fact, cavities are five times more likely to be found in our nation’s children than asthma.

Cavities occur when bacteria and food are not properly brushed away, causing acid to form on the tooth. The acid begins to soften the tooth’s enamel until a hole — or cavity — develops. Alarmingly, more than half of all children have cavities by the second grade! This is why here at Centra Dental, our kids dentists stress to parents the importance of maintaining a healthy mouth in their kids.

Tips For Preventing Cavities In Your Kids

Teach good oral hygiene habits early. Once your child is old enough to brush their teeth, make sure they brush at least twice a day with a fluoride toothpast. Consistent use of fluoride strengthens enamel, which in turn makes it difficult for acid to penetrate. Although most toothpastes contain fluoride, toothpaste alone cannot fully protect your kid’s teeth from cavities. Therefore, it’s important for you to remind your child to floss regularly as well.

While some towns fluoridate their tap water, some do not. If your town’s tap water is not fluoridated or if your family uses purified water, ask our kids dentists for fluoride supplements. Also, keep in mind that too much fluoride can cause teeth to discolor. Therefore, check with our Houston dental office before supplementing.

Limit or avoid certain foods. Sugary foods, such as cookies and candy (especially sticky gummies and taffies) can erode enamel and cause cavities. In addition, sugary drinks are just as bad for your child’s enamel. Therefore, if your kid eats and drinks any of these things, make sure they brush their teeth or at the very least, rinse their mouth to wash away the sugar. Have them do the same if they take a syrupy medicine, as these are often sweetened with sugar to make them more palatable to kids.

See Our Kids Dentists Regularly

In addition to the aforementioned tips, bringing your child into our Houston dental office to see our kids dentists for regular teeth cleanings and checkups are a big part of avoiding cavities. During these visits to our Southwest Houston dental office, our Houston dentists will help with teaching your kid the importance of good oral hygiene, while answering any questions your may have. We are committed to the health and wellness of your child, so contact us today to set up an appointment.

You may be surprised to learn that good oral hygiene in your baby begins before their first tooth appears. Just because you don’t see any teeth in your baby’s mouth, it doesn’t mean they aren’t there. Teeth begin to form in your baby’s mouth during the second trimester of pregnancy. In fact, your baby already has 20 primary teeth at birth, with some teeth fully developed in the jaw.</>

Here are a few tips from our Houston dentists on how to care for your young child or baby’s teeth:

• Before your baby starts teething, clear away any harmful bacteria in their mouth by wiping their gums with a clean, moist washcloth.

• When your baby begins to have teeth, use an infant toothbrush with a small amount of fluoride toothpaste (about the size of a grain of rice) to brush them. You want to use such a small amount of toothpaste in order to minimize the amount your baby may swallow. Remember to use fluoride toothpaste that carries the American Dental Association's (ADA) seal of acceptance.

• At about age 2, teach your kid to spit while brushing. Do not give your child water to rinse out their mouth, as this increases the chances of them swallowing toothpaste.

• Once your child reaches 3 years old, increase the amount of fluoride toothpaste to about the size of a pea. Again, you want to minimize their chances of swallowing too much toothpaste.

• Before they are at least 8 years old, make sure to always supervise your kid when they brush, as before this age they are more likely to swallow toothpaste.

Reminder From Our Houston Kids Dentists: Practice Good Feeding Habits!

If good feeding habits are not practiced, even babies can develop tooth decay. For instance, putting a baby to sleep with a bottle can harm the baby's teeth, as sugars from juice or milk can remain on a baby's teeth for long periods of time. These sugars can eat away at the enamel, thus creating a condition known as bottle mouth. Babies with bottle mouth often have pocked, pitted, or discolored front teeth. Severe cases of bottle mouth can develop cavities that require extraction of their front baby teeth.

Start Off Right With A Visit To Our Southwest Houston Dental Clinic

We recommend that you bring your child into our dental clinic in southwest Houston once they turn 1-year old. At this first visit, our kids dentist will conduct a mouth exam designed for babies and explain proper brushing and flossing techniques.

Visits to our Houston dental office allows our kids dentists to detect any problems early, while helping your kid get used to seeing the dentist. Our kids dentists are trained professionals in kids' oral health. Therefore, you can be sure your kid is in good hands. Contact our southwest Houston dental office today to set up an appointment.

For many, fear of going to the dentist is a real thing. In fact, approximately 10 to 20 percent of U.S. adults have dental anxiety. This fear can impact not just the condition of a person’s teeth and gums, but their overall health as well. That’s why it’s so important for parents to alleviate any fears of going to the dentist in their kids at a young age. The following tips will help ease your child’s anxieties and pave the way for stress-free visits to our southwest Houston dental office:

Bring Them To Our Kids Dentist Early In Life

Children should see a kids dentist as soon as their first tooth appears and no later than their first birthday. Bringing in your kids while they are still babies gets them familiar with the environment and procedures of our Houston dental clinic. In addition, starting dental visits at a young age not only benefits their oral health, but builds trust with our kids dentist as well.

Prepare Them For Their Visit To Our Houston Dental Office Ahead of Time

A great game to play with your child to help them get ready for their dental visit is “dentist”. Role-play with your child, and let them examine your teeth and pretend to clean them and vice versa. By playing “dentist" at home with your child, you can help them better understand what will happen when they arrive at our dental office.

Motivate Them By Offering Small Rewards For Listening To Our Kids Dentist

As a parent, you are aware that rewarding good behavior motivates kids to be cooperative. Offering a small reward such as: a new small toy, their favorite healthy snack, or extra playtime can go a long way in making sure your child behaves in the dental chair and listens to our kids dentist. Also, making their dental visit an excursion by going to the park or movie before or after seeing us can help get them excited about their dental visits.

Here at Centra Dental in southwest Houston, our Houston dentists are ready to work with you to help alleviate any anxieties your child may have about seeing the dentist. Call us today to set up an appointment.

Getting kids to take care of their teeth can sometimes be like, well, “pulling teeth”. When it comes to oral heath, some of the biggest challenges parents often face involve getting their kids to brush properly (if at all), floss daily, or to stay away from sugary drinks and snacks. Here are some pediatric dentistry tips from our southwest Houston dental office that encourage your kids to take better care of their teeth.

Encourage Your Kid to Choose Healthier Food Options

Food items such as fruit, vegetables, nuts, cheese, and lean meats are better for your child’s teeth than cookies, candy, or chips. Unfortunately, kids often need a lot of persuasion to choose from the healthier options. Young children are also hesitant when it comes to eating food that is unfamiliar to them. Here are some suggestions from our kids dentists on how to make eating healthy fun:

• Include your kid in purchasing your food, and have them help in the preparation of it.

• Allow your child to bring their favorite stuffed animal or doll to the dinner table on certain occasions. Young children often become more willing to try unfamiliar food when they first “feed” it to their furry friend.

• Have healthy food options such as carrot sticks, apple slices, or cheese cubes ready to eat whenever they need a snack. When children are hungry, the last thing they want to do is have to wait for you to prepare their snacks. Having healthy options immediately ready to satiate their hunger goes a long way in creating healthy eating habits.

Get Them To Look Forward To Seeing Our Houston Dentists

Getting your child into the habit of visiting our dental clinic in southwest Houston contributes greatly to their oral health, as our kids dentists can help educate your child on the importance of taking care of their teeth, while encouraging them to practice good oral hygiene habits. Here are some tips to help make them look forward to seeing us each time:

• Start early, so your child sees visits to our southwest Houston dental clinic as a normal part of life. Our Houston dentists recommend that you bring your child into our dental office as soon as their first tooth appears, or no later than their first birthday.

• Turn visits to our Houston dental office into fun excursions by going to the movies, the park, children’s museum, or some other fun place before of after their appointment.

• Before their appointment, read children’s books to your kid that talk about how going to the dentist is not only important, but fun as well.

Although encouraging kids to take better care of their oral health can often be challenging, our Houston dentists are here to help. Our priority is helping your child maintain a healthy mouth through good dental habits, while enjoying the process. Contact Centra Dental in southwest Houston today to set up an appointment.

Most two-year-old toddlers have never visited a dentist. In fact, only 25% of children have seen a kids dentist by the age of five. This fact is both surprising and disturbing, and it’s no wonder that the most common chronic childhood disease in the country is tooth decay.

We here at Centra Dental in southwest Houston strongly urge parents to stay on top of their child’s oral health. Pediatric dentistry is an important aspect of your child's health, as it has been proven that better oral health contributes to better overall health in a child.

Why Your Child Needs To See Our Kids Dentists ASAP

Beginning from when your child is just a baby, they are often exposed to food and liquids that can damage their oral health. Baby formula, certain foods, milk, and juice are all full of sugars that can promote tooth decay.

In addition, when young kids drink from baby bottles and sippy cups, chances of decay are increased, as drinking from these containers constantly expose sugar to the child’s teeth, especially the front teeth.

Tooth decay can lead to severe pain and even infection when left untreated. In fact, the decay can become so severe that the only treatment option is tooth extraction.

At our southwest Houston dental clinic, our dentists recommend that you reduce your kid’s exposure to sugary liquids, while keeping up with their dental maintenance. Bringing them into our dental office for regular checkups and cleanings will ensure that they have a healthy mouth and better overall health.

When to Bring Your Child to See Our Kids Dentists

Our Houston dentists recommend that you bring your child in for their first dental visit as soon as their first tooth begins to show, or no later than their first birthday.

When you bring your child into our Houston dental office, we will thoroughly examine your child’s mouth and look for any issues that may cause problems with their dental development. Our dental experts will also advise you on tooth decay protection and prepare a regular dental maintenance program.

Centra Dental is committed to giving your child a healthy mouth, as we understand a healthy mouth = a healthier child. Therefore, if you live in southwest Houston or the surrounding areas, contact our dental office today to set up an appointment for your kid.

Dental braces are often associated with children or teenagers. But what about adults? Can adults wear braces too? Simply put, of course! Braces are not just for kids, as more adults are choosing to have their teeth straightened than ever before. If you are an adult looking to straighten your teeth, you’ll be happy to know that Centra Dental is ready to meet your needs.

Why Would An Adult Need Dental Braces?

People often think of dental braces as purely a cosmetic dentistry tool. However, the function of braces goes beyond aesthetics. If you did not have orthodontic treatment as a child, you may suffer from an overbite or underbite, crooked or gapped teeth, or a misaligned jaw. As a result, health problems such as headaches, tooth decay, gum disease, or chewing and digestive issues can occur. Dental braces not only alleviate these health issues, but they leave you with a great smile as well.

Adult Dental Braces Options At Our Houston Dental Office

Here at Centra Dental in southwest Houston, we offer traditional braces and Invisalign clear braces.

With traditional braces, our Houston dentists glue 3M metal brackets to your teeth and tie them together with wires and small rubber bands. The braces are permanently attached to your teeth for the duration of your treatment plan and cannot be removed. Metal braces are preferred when complex procedures are required such as: aligning a tooth that is higher than others, rotating teeth, or moving teeth vertically. Because traditional braces are not removeable, you can be sure they are working 24/7 to correct all of your orthodontic issues.

Invisalign braces are clear plastic trays that are specifically fitted for your teeth. Adults are often reluctant to wear metal braces because they “don’t want to look like a kid.”. While it’s practically impossible to hide the sight of metal braces, Invisalign clear plastic trays are virtually unnoticeable, thus allowing adults to smile confidently without looking like a kid. In addition, Invisalign clear plastic trays are removeable, resulting in easier eating, drinking, and teeth cleaning.

If you are an adult looking to straighten their teeth, our Houston dental office is ready help. Our expert dentists and orthodontists will thoroughly discuss a treatment plan with you, while helping you decide whether traditional braces or Invisalign is right for you. Contact us today to schedule a braces consultation.

Approximately 4 million Americans wear dental braces, with children making up roughly 80 percent of wearers. For many American children, getting dental braces is more a question of “when” rather than “if”, as getting one’s teeth straightened is just another common part of growing up.

Health Benefits of Braces

Straightening one’s teeth is not just a cosmetic issue. Misaligned or crooked teeth can lead to significant medical issues such as: chronic headaches, bad digestion, gum disease, and tooth loss. Failure to invest a relatively small amount of money in braces can easily lead to exponentially larger medical bills in the future.

Despite the many cosmetic and health benefits a child receives from having straight teeth, there are still some parents who hesitate at getting their kid fitted for braces. The following are two of the top reasons for their hesitation, and how we here at Centra Dental address them.

Price of Dental Braces

This is perhaps the most common reason parents hesitate to get their kid fitted for braces. They may feel their kid’s teeth aren’t that bad and can’t seem to justify the cost. They are also not aware of the health issues related to having crooked teeth or a misaligned jaw.

Our Houston dental office always educates parents on the many health benefits of braces. We help the parents understand that by getting their child braces, they are making an investment in their child’s health. In addition, we are constantly offering great deals on dental braces, which also help parents overcome their hesitancy.

Pain From Dental Braces

Many parents are afraid that their child will experience pain from braces. There might be slight pain in the teeth or jaw in the beginning, but this is because the wires and brackets are new to the mouth and actively moving the teeth. An over-the-counter pain reliever such as Ibuprofen will easily relieve such pain symptoms, and soon the child’s mouth will adjust to the braces and no longer feel pain.

Contact Centra Dental For A Dental Braces Consultation

Our Houston dentists understand that for many parents, deciding whether or not to get braces for their kid is a big decision. This is why our dental office in southwest Houston makes a point of helping parents feel comfortable through education and great pricing. We are dedicated to your child’s overall health, so contact us today to set up a braces consultation.

Orthodontic treatment from Centra Dental not only improves a person’s smile, but also corrects many problems, such as overbite, underbite, or jaw misalignment. Dental braces from our Houston dental office are often the best form of treatment in resolving these issues. However, many children and teenagers are reluctant to get braces because they are self-conscious about how they will look or that they will cause pain. If your kid needs braces but is against getting them, here are some tips to overcoming resistance.

Ask Your Kid Why They Are Against Dental Braces

First and foremost, find out from your child why they are against getting dental braces. The only way you can address your child’s concerns is by directly asking what they are. Listen attentively to your child’s responses without arguing. By creating a non-confrontational environment, this helps make them feel safe and more at ease to open up.

Ask Your Kid Who They Like or Admire That Wears Dental Braces

Children are often worried that they will look funny with braces and be made fun of by their peers. I’m sure we can all remember hearing the term, “Metal Mouth”, used in describing someone with braces at one time or another. As bullying is a serious issue in some schools, it is important to take your child’s concerns seriously. Ask your child if they have any close friends or people they respect who already have braces. Encourage your child to talk to these people about their experiences with braces, and what makes them think wearing braces is worthwhile. An additional tactic that may also help is to make a list of athletes or celebrities your child is a fan of who have worn braces before, and showing them the list.

Assure Your Child That Braces Do Not Cause Much Pain

Many kids are anxious about getting braces because they are afraid they will cause pain. Although there may be some initial discomfort, this can easily be treated with over-the-counter pain medication. In addition, our orthodontic patients here at Centra Dental have found that any feelings of pain or discomfort aren’t really that bad and fade quickly.

Contact Centra Dental For Your Houston Braces

It’s not surprising that getting braces is not something many kids usually look forward to. However, our Houston dentists are here to make the experience worthwhile for your kid, while alleviating any fears they may have. Not only will they end up with a better smile, but better overall oral health as well. Serving the southwest Houston area, we offer some of the best deals on braces in the city. Contact us today to set up a braces consultation.

Having straight teeth is a highly valued esthetic in American culture. So much so that for many kids, wearing dental braces is a question of “when” rather than “if. Still, there are also many adults who may not have worn braces when they were younger that now wish to straighten their teeth. However, many adults often do not want to have to deal with the permanence of metal braces, or are afraid braces will make them look like a kid. Thankfully, Centra Dental in southwest Houston offers Invisalign clear braces as a great alternative to metal braces.

Invisalign clear braces are practically unnoticeable, thus allowing patients to straighten their teeth without feeling self-conscious about looking like a child. In addition, as opposed to metal braces, Invisalign clear plastic trays are removable, thus allowing patients a greater degree of freedom when eating, drinking, or having romantic encounters. Such benefits have caused a boom in the Invisalign market in recent years. In fact, the number of Invisalign treatments has tripled over the last five years, with an expectation that the number of treatments will only continue to increase.

HOW INVISALIGN CLEAR PLASTIC TRAYS WORK

The process of getting fitted for Invisalign at our dental clinic begins with a consultation with one of our Houston dentists. Here, the dentist will learn about your needs, while answering any questions you may have regarding the process. Our dentist will then conduct a thorough examination of your teeth to determine the severity of misalignment or crookedness. If the dentist concludes Invisalign would be a good option for you, we will then take X-rays of your dental structure. This allows us to make custom braces that fit your teeth perfectly. After each session, you will be provided new clear plastic trays that will continue to adjust your teeth until they are completely straightened.

Book Your Invisalign Consultation with Centra Dental

It used to be that the only option to straighten your teeth was traditional dental braces. This deterred many adults and teens from getting their teeth straightened because they did not want to deal with the look and hassle of traditional braces. Now, with Invisalign, these are no longer issues. Therefore, if you or your loved one is looking to straighten their teeth sans metal braces, contact our southwest Houston dental office today.

Here in Houston, your child most likely is currently on spring break or about to start it. If you suspect your child may need braces, contact our southwest Houston dental office to schedule an appointment for a dental braces consultation. Our Houston dentists are ready to examine your child’s teeth and determine if braces are needed, and to prepare a comprehensive treatment plan.

Spring break is a great time to bring your child into our dental office because it provides an entire week they are not in school. This leaves more options available when it comes to setting an appointment. However, this is also one of our busiest times of the year thus, you should make the appointment as soon as possible.

SIGNS YOUR CHILD NEEDS BRACES

If your child has crooked, gapped, or misaligned teeth, chances are they need braces. Our Houston dental office offers 3M metal braces to our kid patients. These braces are not only high quality, but affordable as well. Therefore, you can be sure your kid is getting great orthodontic treatment without hurting your wallet.

Another great thing about getting braces at Centra Dental is that dental insurance will often pay for the braces. This is due to the fact that dental insurance benefits will pay when it is shown that the benefits your child receives from braces go beyond cosmetic. For instance, if your child suffers from malocclusion – severely crooked teeth, they can also suffer from poor digestion because the crooked teeth prevent food from being properly chewed. In addition, severely crooked teeth can lead to poor oral health because food particles often get stuck in the crevices of crooked teeth, thus leading to plaque buildup, cavities, gum disease, and other issues.

CALL TO SCHEDULE YOUR CHILD’S SPRING BREAK BRACES APPOINTMENT TODAY

Serving southwest Houston, Centra Dental is committed to your child’s oral health. This includes providing straight teeth at an affordable price. Take the first step to improving your child’s overall health by contacting our dental office today.

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