Please Wait...
The Pediatric Dental Center



Frequently Asked QuestionsFrequently Asked Questions



What is a Pediatric Dentist?


Why are Dental X-rays Necessary?


What are Sealants?


What is Nitrous Oxide / Oxygen (Laughing Gas)?


When Will My Baby Start Getting Teeth?


What is Baby Bottle Tooth Decay?


How Should I Care For My Child's Teeth?


What are Good Snacks For My Child?


Why is it Important to Care For Primary Teeth?




What is a Pediatric Dentist?

Pediatric dentistry is one of nine dental specialties recognized by the American Dental Association, and are considered the pediatricians of dentistry. A pediatric dentist has two to three years of specialty training following dental school. The pediatric dental practice is limited to treating children from the age of infancy through adolescence. The Pediatric dentist is also specially trained to treat children with special health needs.



Why are Dental X-rays Necessary?
Radiographs (X-Rays) are a vital and necessary part of your child's dental diagnostic process. Without X-rays, certain dental conditions can and will be missed. At Pediatric Dental Center, we use only digital x-rays which greatly reduces the amount of radiation to which your child is exposed.


In addition to detecting cavities, X-Rays survey erupting teeth, diagnose bone diseases, evaluate the results of an injury or plan orthodontic treatment. X-Rays also allow dentists to diagnose and treat health conditions that cannot be detected during a clinical examination. When dental problems are found and treated early, dental care is more comfortable for your child and more affordable for you.


The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends X-Rays and examinations every six months for children with a high risk of tooth decay. On average, most pediatric dentists request radiographs approximately once a year. Approximately every 3 years it is a good idea to obtain a complete set of radiographs, either a panoramic and bitewings or periapicals and bitewings.


Pediatric dentists are particularly careful to minimize the exposure of their patients to radiation. With contemporary safeguards, the amount of radiation received in a dental X-Rays examination is extremely small. The risk is negligible. In fact, the dental X-rays represent a far smaller risk than an undetected and untreated dental problem. Lead body aprons and shields will protect your child. Today's equipment filters out unnecessary X-rays and restricts the x-rays and restricts the x-ray beam to the area of interest. High speed film and proper shielding assure that your child receives a minimal amount of radiation.



What are Sealants?
A sealant is a clear or shaded plastic material that is applied to the chewing surfaces (grooves) of the molars. This is the highest risk area for decay in permanent teeth. The sealant acts as a barrier to food, plaque and acid, consequently protecting the decay-prone areas of the teeth. Although this does not eliminate the chance of your child getting a cavity, it does greatly reduces their risk.



What is Nitrous Oxide / Oxygen (Laughing Gas)?
It is a blend of two gases: nitrous oxide and oxygen. When absorbed by the body, nitrous oxide/oxygen has a calming effect. It is very safe and your child remains fully conscious and maintains all natural reflexes. Normal breathing eliminates the nitrous oxide/oxygen from the body.

  • How will my child feel while breathing the gas?
    • Your child will smell a sweet, pleasant aroma and experience a sense of relaxation. Anyone with anxiety about the sights, sounds, or sensations of dental treatment will usually respond more positively while using "laughing gas.”
  • Are there special instructions for "laughing gas"?
    • Your child should have little or no food prior to the appointment. (Occasionally, nausea or vomiting occurs when a child has a full stomach.) Inform the pediatric dentist of any respiratory condition or medications your child is taking. 
  • Are there any contraindications?
    • If your child has a middle ear infection he/she should not be exposed to nitrous oxide/oxygen. The gases could build up in the body causing further problems.


When Will My Baby Start Getting Teeth?
Children's teeth begin forming before birth. As early as four months, the first primary teeth may begin to erupt. These are usually the lower central incisors, followed closely by the upper central incisors. We will closely monitor the eruption pattern of the primary teeth.

Although all 20 primary teeth usually appear by age three, the pace and order of their eruption can vary. Permanent teeth begin appearing around age six. Around this time your child will get their first molars along with the lower central incisors.


What is Early Childhood Caries (Bottle Tooth Decay)?
Baby bottle decay is a serious form of decay among young children. This condition is caused by frequent and long exposures of an infant's teeth to liquids that contain carbohydrates. Among these liquids are milk (including breast milk), formula, fruit juice, even watered down fruit juice, and other sweetened drinks.

Putting a baby to bed for a nap or at night with a bottle filled with something other than water can cause serious and rapid tooth decay. Sweet liquid pools around the child's teeth giving plaque an opportunity to produce acids that attack tooth enamel. If you must give the baby a bottle as comforter at bedtime, it should contain only water. When you offer water at bedtime some children will cry for the beverage of choice. This may last for about two weeks, but eventually they will understand that they are only getting water and they will be content.


After each feeding, wipe the baby's gums with a damp cloth (if no erupted teeth) or brush teeth to remove plaque. The easiest way to do this is to sit down, place the child's head in your lap or lay the child on the edge of a bed. Whatever position you use, be sure you can see into the child's mouth easily. The Pediatric Dental Center team will further instruct you on ways to brush your child's teeth as they come in.



How Should I Care For My Child's Teeth?
Begin daily brushing as soon as the child's first tooth erupts. A pea-size amount of fluoride toothpaste can be used after the age of three. By age four or five, children should be able to brush their own teeth twice a day with a parent helping them one time a day. Most children will need help brushing until about age eight to make sure that they are doing a thorough job.


Proper brushing removes plaque from the inner, outer and chewing surfaces. When teaching children to brush, place the toothbrush at a 45-degree angle, start along the gum line with a soft bristle brush in a gentle circular motion. Brush the outer surfaces of each tooth, upper and lower. Repeat the same method on the inside surfaces and chewing surfaces of all the teeth. Finish by brushing the tongue to help freshen breath and remove bacteria.

Flossing removes plaque between the teeth where a toothbrush cannot reach. Flossing should begin when any two teeth touch. Floss picks or holders can be very beneficial to use with children.

What are Good Snacks For My Child?
Healthy eating habits lead to healthy teeth. Like the rest of the body, the teeth and soft tissue of the mouth need a well-balanced diet. Children should eat a variety of foods from the five major food groups. Most snacks that children eat can lead to cavity formation. The more frequently a child snacks, the greater the risks of tooth decay. The length of time food remains in the mouth also plays a role. For example, hard candy and breath mints stay in the mouth a long time, which cause longer acid attacks on tooth enamel. If your child must snack, choose nutritious foods such as vegetables, low-fat yogurt, and low-fat cheese which are healthier and better for children's teeth.



Why is it Important to Care For Primary Teeth?
It is very important to maintain the health of the primary teeth. Neglected cavities can and frequently do lead to problems which affect developing permanent teeth. There is about a seven year period in which children are transitioning from primary teeth to permanent. Any decay present during this time can affect both the primary and permanent teeth. In addition, when children experience tooth pain, they do not eat or sleep properly and may even miss days of school. Worst case scenario, an untreated abscess from a cavity can cause serious or even life-threatening infections.



Burlington Location


5495 North Bend Road, Suite 102

Burlington, KY 41005

(859) 534-5640



Crestview Hills Location


220 Thomas More Pkwy.
Crestview Hills, KY 41017

(859) 341-3012



Office Hours


Monday - Thursday

8:00 am - 5:00pm


 Please call to schedule

your child's appointment


Contact Us



Phone: (859) 534-5640

Fax: (859) 534-5922


Crestview Hills

Phone: (859) 341-3012

Fax: (859) 818-0505