How to Keep Your Child’s Teeth Healthy | Northridge Dentist

It may sound like quite the chore, teaching proper dental hygiene to your little one, but it’s really easy to do. After all, the earlier you initiate a daily routine, the more likely your child will continue to have great check-ups.

As soon as the first teeth come in, begin brushing them with a small, soft-bristled toothbrush and water.  If you are considering using toothpaste before your child’s second birthday, ask your dentist first.

To avoid baby bottle tooth decay and teeth misalignment due to sucking, try to wean your child off the breast and bottle by their first year and monitor excessive sucking of pacifiers and thumbs. Never give your child a bottle of milk, juice or sweetened liquid as a pacifier at naptime or bedtime. The sugars in the drink will sit in their mouths as your child sleeps, slowly causing dental issues.

Brushing at night is a great idea to start teaching good dental habits due to lower salivary flow and higher susceptibility to cavities. Perhaps let the child brush their teeth first to build self-confidence, then follow up to ensure that all plaque is removed. By about age five, your child should be able to brush his or her own teeth with proper parental instruction.

As a parent, the best way to teach a child how to brush is to lead by good example. Allowing your child to watch you brush your teeth teaches the importance of good oral hygiene. In addition, preventative routine dental checkups ensure your child has healthy teeth and gums.

Schedule an appointment today with Dr. David Lunt, DDS by calling 818-885-7230. Visit the website for more information at www.davidluntdds.com.

 Dr. Lunt gladly accepts patients from Cal State Northridge, Burbank, San Fernando, Topanga Canyon, Valley Glen, Agoura and all surrounding areas.

Pediatric Dental Care Starts from Birth | Northridge Dentist

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Halloween is a sweet time of year for your child. Sometimes it is difficult to be a parent when there is sweet treats everywhere your little one turns. But protecting their dental health at home is easy to do. Here are just a few little tips to keep in mind when it seems like keeping their smile bright is an impossible feat, and it starts from infancy. Yes, even little ones without teeth can start becoming accustomed to dental health care. The sooner you get them into a good routine, the easier it will be when this holiday rolls around every year.

Clean your infant’s gums with a clean, damp cloth after each feeding. As soon as the first teeth come in, begin brushing them with a small, soft-bristled toothbrush and water.  If you are considering using toothpaste before your child’s second birthday, ask your dentist first.

To avoid baby bottle tooth decay and teeth misalignment due to sucking, try to wean your child off of the breast and bottle by one year of age, and monitor excessive sucking of pacifiers, fingers and thumbs. Never give your child a bottle of milk, juice or sweetened liquid as a pacifier at naptime or bedtime.

Help a young child brush at night, the most important time to brush, due to lower salivary flow and higher susceptibility to cavities. Perhaps let the child brush their teeth first to build self-confidence, then the parent can follow up to ensure that all plaque is removed. Usually by age 5 or so, the child can learn to brush his or her own teeth with proper parental instruction.

The best way to teach a child how to brush is to lead by good example. Allowing your child to watch you brush your teeth teaches the importance of good oral hygiene. Have them pick out their own toothbrush and toothpaste. Children love to feel like they’re doing adult things and it will help them feel responsible for their teeth.

In addition, preventative routine dental checkups ensure your child has healthy teeth and gums. Don’t wait. Schedule your child’s next pediatric dental visit with Dr. David Lunt at (818) 885-7230 or online at davidluntdds.com.

Dr. David Lunt also proudly serves Northridge, Granada Hills, Reseda, Chatsworth, Porter Ranch, Winnetka and surrounding areas.

Halloween and Braces: Trick or Treat? | Northridge Dentist

thinkstockphotos-178564205October is National Orthodontic Health Month, and coincidentally, Halloween. (I know…How did that happen?) So in honor of these two fantastic occasions, let’s do a quick run-down of what is going to happen if you throw caution to the wind and celebrate Halloween like all of your friends without braces. Because if you do decide to not look after your braces, the consequences will be more frightening than the holiday itself.

When we get our braces put on, we are warned that there are certain foods we will have to forgo while our braces are fixing our smile. And when it comes to Halloween, these foods are in full force. Popcorn, nuts, gum and all hard, sticky or chewy candies are pure evil on your mouth’s delicate appliances. As a matter of fact, while everything is fine in moderation, candy is the worst on your teeth. They come in lots of different variations.

They can be a hard candy, like a lollypop or a Jolly Rancher, which are a favorite because they last a while if we suck on them. Having the sugar linger around in your mouth as the candy dissolves makes it easier for cavities to form. And if you chomp on them, you can run the risk of breaking off one of your brackets or chipping an actual tooth. Chewy candies, like a gummy bear or a jelly bean, have similar results but have a tendency to get stuck in the crevices of your molars, making a perfect hideout for cavities. Sticky candy, like caramels or chewing gum, are some of the worst treats of all. Not only can they pull off a bracket from your tooth, but they can burrow within your molars as well, making them basically a sweet combination of the two others. There are also candies on the market that are sour than they are sweet and are an absolute favorite with all kids today. The sourness is actually acidic and can break down your tooth’s enamel, making them more prone to decay, so try to limit these candies the most.

There are some alternatives to these candies that will not only be safe on your braces, but won’t make you feel like you’re being left out of the scariest of holidays. Chocolate, soft treats and ice cream are all braces-friendly treats that are quite enjoyable.

So, what do you do to prevent anything from happening to your braces during this spooky time? Try to limit your candy intake. The more you indulge in these sweets, the higher the risk of damaging your appliances. When eating the candy, make them quick snacks, not an all-day treat. The longer you let the sugar linger in your mouth, the easier it is for the sugars to stake inside your mouth. After you have your sweet treat, rinse you mouth out with water. Saliva is your mouth’s natural fighter against cavity-causing bacteria. And lastly, brush and floss at least two times a day. Cavities are no match for good oral hygiene. Happy Halloween!

For more information on oral health care, contact Dr. David Lunt at (818) 885-7230 or visit our website davidluntdds.com.

Dr. David Lunt also proudly serves Northridge, Burbank, San Fernando, Topanga Canyon, Valley Glen, Agoura, CSUN, Cal State Northridge, and all surrounding areas.

Making Family Dental Care A Priority | Family Dentistry | Northridge, CA

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Children learn dental hygiene from their parents and family members. Keeping your teeth and gums healthy is something everyone in your family should be involved in. Taking proper care of your teeth and gums now prevents problems when you get older, for children and parents. Dr. David Lunt DDS is proud to offer family dentistry and offers a general routine that each member of the family should follow:

Babies and Children

  1. Clean each new tooth gently with a clean wet washcloth. As your baby grows you can switch to a child’s toothbrush.
  2. Do not use toothpaste on a child younger than 2 years old.
  3. Do not let your baby fall asleep with a bottle. This leads to what is called “baby bottle tooth decay.”
  4. Take your child to the dentist regularly starting at 1 year of age.

Teenagers

  1. Brush twice a day with fluoride toothpaste.
  2. Floss at least once a day.
  3. Don’t smoke or chew tobacco.
  4. If your teenager plays sports be sure they wear a protective mouth guard.
  5. Make sure they see the dentist for all regular checkups.

Adults

  1. Brush teeth at least twice a day with fluoride toothpaste.
  2. Floss at least once a day.
  3. Don’t smoke or chew tobacco.
  4. Check with your doctor to make sure any medications you are taking might damage your teeth.
  5. Check your mouth regularly for sores, red swollen gums or anything out of the ordinary.
  6. See your dentist every six months for regular checkups and cleanings.

Family dental care is a priority. Make dental appointments for your family with Dr. David Lunt DDS in Northridge, CA. Dr. Lunt offers the best in family dentistry and will help keep your family’s teeth and gums healthy. Call today at 818-885-7230. Visit his website at www.davidluntdds.com.

Also accepting patients from Burbank, San Fernando, Topanga Canyon, Valley Glen, Agoura and all surrounding areas.

Finding a Family Dentist That The Entire Family Can Love | Northridge, CA

iStock_000007889488XSmallFinding the right family dentist for the entire family is a key part of ensuring great oral care for everyone. You want a dentist that can meet your specific needs and offers excellent pediatric dental care. A great dentist can make every trip to the office a positive experience. This can make you into well-informed parents that have kids who are motivated to take care of their teeth. What are the most important things you should look for in a good dentist for the entire family?

Parents Needs

When looking for a dentist to care for your family’s teeth, you want a skilled dentist that you have great rapport with. There is no substitute for an experienced family dentist! This is someone that can recognize possible problems and educate you on the best treatment options. The best dentist to find is one that has worked with adults and kids.  This is especially true if you have very young children.  A family dentist can understand and take action on the diverse needs of you and your children may face.  These can include: losing those first teeth, fluoride needs for the entire family and even tooth whitening options.

Having a family dentist that you feel comfortable talking to is also important. You may have questions and concerns about everything from healthy snacks to flossing skills. Every trip to the dentist is an opportunity to have a professional evaluate and care for your family’s teeth, but it also is an opportunity to gain valuable information about oral health and preventative care.

Also look for a family dental office that is practical. Is the office close to where you live? What about the availability of making a next-day appointment for your unforeseen accidents?

What Kids Want

Children want, and need, in a dentist and dental hygienist is very important.  They need someone that is gentle, patient and work with kids on a daily basis. A child friendly waiting room is great, but kindness of the dentist and staff is what will help your child feel comfortable and encouraged. Help your kids gain a positive attitude toward dental visits by finding a professional office that makes them feel good about taking care of their teeth.

For more information on Family Dentistry, contact Dr. David Lunt at (818) 885-7230 or visit our website.

Dr. David Lunt also proudly serves Burbank, San Fernando, Topanga Canyon, Valley Glen, Agoura, CSUN, Cal State Northridge, and surrounding areas.

Avoid Baby Tooth Decay | Pediatrics | Northridge, CA

Parents usually provide oral hygiene care until their child is old enough to take responsibility for their daily dental health routine of brushing and flossing. A proper routine of preventive home care is important from the day your child is born.

  • Clean your infant’s gums with a clean, damp cloth after each feeding.
  • As soon as the first teeth come in, begin brushing them with a small, soft-bristled toothbrush and water.  If you are considering using toothpaste before your child’s second birthday, ask your dentist first.
  • To avoid baby bottle tooth decay and teeth misalignment due to sucking, try to wean your child off of the breast and bottle by one year of age, and monitor excessive sucking of pacifiers, fingers and thumbs. Never give your child a bottle of milk, juice or sweetened liquid as a pacifier at nap time or bedtime.
  • Help a young child brush at night, the most important time to brush, due to lower salivary flow and higher susceptibility to cavities. Perhaps let the child brush their teeth first to build self-confidence, then the parent can follow up to ensure that all plaque is removed. Usually by age 5 or so, the child can learn to brush his or her own teeth with proper parental instruction.
  • The best way to teach a child how to brush is to lead by good example. Allowing your child to watch you brush your teeth teaches the importance of good oral hygiene.

In addition, preventative routine dental checkups ensure your child has healthy teeth and gums. Don’t wait. Schedule your child’s next pediatric dental visit with Dr. David Lunt DDS in Northridge, CA 818-885-7230 or www.davidluntdds.com.

When should I start taking my child to the dentist? | Northridge, CA

 

You should take your child to the dentist after the first tooth makes an appearance. Dr. David Lunt DDS of Northridge, CA recommends taking them to the dentist at this stage of their life helps to prevent future problems of tooth decay. It also aids the parents in learning how to properly clean their child’s teeth. Your child will get an early start getting acclimated to going to the dentist which reduces anxiety and fear in the future.

What will happen on the first visit?

Most first visits are ways to get acquainted with your child and get your child use to going to the dentist. This is due to some children needing time to get acclimated. If the child is compliant, the first session often lasts between 15 and 30 minutes and may include the following, depending on age:

  • A gentle but thorough examination of the teeth, jaw, bite, gums and oral tissues to monitor growth and development and observe any problem areas
  • If indicated, a gentle cleaning, which includes polishing teeth and removing any plaque, tartar buildup or stains
  • X-rays
  • A demonstration on proper home cleaning
  • Assessment of the need for fluoride

The dentist should be able to answer any questions you have and try to make you and your child feel comfortable throughout the visit. Pediatric dentistry provides for a relaxed, non-threatening environment for your child. Your child will need to see the dentist every 6 months.

Contact Dr. Lunt to schedule your child’s first or next dental appointment. Office: 818-885-7230 or www.davidluntdds.com.

How can I protect my child’s oral health at home? | Pediatrics | Northridge, CA

 

Parents usually provide oral hygiene care until their child is old enough to take responsibility for their daily dental health routine of brushing and flossing. According to Dr. Lunt DDS of Northridge, CA a proper routine of preventive home care is important from the day your child is born.

  • Clean your infant’s gums with a clean, damp cloth after each feeding.
  • As soon as the first teeth come in, begin brushing them with a small, soft-bristled toothbrush and water.  If you are considering using toothpaste before your child’s second birthday, ask your dentist first.
  • To avoid baby bottle tooth decay and teeth misalignment due to sucking, try to wean your child off of the breast and bottle by one year of age, and monitor excessive sucking of pacifiers, fingers and thumbs. Never give your child a bottle of milk, juice or sweetened liquid as a pacifier at naptime or bedtime.
  • Help a young child brush at night, the most important time to brush, due to lower salivary flow and higher susceptibility to cavities. Perhaps let the child brush their teeth first to build self-confidence, then the parent can follow up to ensure that all plaque is removed. Usually by age 5 or so, the child can learn to brush his or her own teeth with proper parental instruction.
  • The best way to teach a child how to brush is to lead by good example. Allowing your child to watch you brush your teeth teaches the importance of good oral hygiene.

In addition, preventative routine dental check ups ensure your child has healthy teeth and gums. Don’t wait. Schedule your child’s next pediatric dental visit with Dr. Lunt at 818-885-7230 or www.davidluntddds.com.

Dental Hygiene is Important for Your Whole Body, Not Just Your Smile. Northridge, Ca

Dental cavities and tooth decay is one of the most common medical conditions experienced by Americans and the single most common disease of childhood. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than19 percent of children have untreated cavities and approximately 41 percent of children have decay in their “baby teeth.” This is a health statistic that has not improved since the 1970s and recent studies are indicting a new rise in cavities in children.

Cavities are the result of gradual tooth decay caused by the build-up of plaque and breakdown of protective enamel. Bacteria are normally present in the mouth; however, as they digest sugar and starches they produce acid, which weakens the enamel. Additionally, the bacteria and its acid mixes with food debris and saliva to form a sticky biofilm called plaque. Plaque that is not removed hardens into tarter, which can result in inflammation and gingivitis. The acid within the plaque can continue to dissolve the enamel and eventually cause pits and holes, called cavities. Initially cavities are painless, but they open the tooth up to infections, eventually exposure the nerve resulting in pain. The internal structures of the tooth can also be destroyed, ultimately causing the loss of the tooth. While this might not seem important in “baby teeth” as they are going to be lost anyway, infection can cause damage to the growing teeth and subsequent treatments can be painful and expensive.

Overall, oral hygiene is an essential component of one’s health. At a recent American Heart Association research meeting, researchers shared findings that professional dental care can reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke. The team tracked more than 100,000 people for an average of 7 years in Taiwan. They found that those who had their teeth professionally cleaned at least once every two years were 24 percent less likely to have a heart attack and 13 percent less likely to have a stroke. The authors argued that regular dentist visits and oral hygiene reduces the growth of inflammation-causing bacterial. Bacteria like Porphyromonas ginigivalis and Fusobacterium nucleatum proliferate on unclean teeth causing periodontal disease. However, these bacteria can also cause inflammation of the vessels, with studies showing that these bacteria are associated with elevation in C-reactive protein, a marker for blood vessel inflammation.

To reduce the rates of dental caries, the U.S. Public Health Service began adding fluoride to drinking water in the 1950s, with widespread adaptation by 1960s. Fluoride interferes with the demineralization of enamel, the tooth’s natural defense against cavities. The CDC considered fluoridation of water to be one of the top 10 greatest public health achievements of the 20th century with studies showing an 18-40 percent reduction in childhood cavities. This reduction was even seen in children who had access to regular dental care and fluorinated toothpaste. Today, we are seeing a resurgence of cavities in children. One proposed mechanism relates to the increased popularity of bottled water, which does not regularly contain fluoride. A study published in the Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine found that up to 24 percent of children are exclusively drinking bottle water. This study did not take into account the many more who consume filtered water as many home filtration systems remove all or some fluoride.

Dental health should begin in childhood as even babies are susceptible to cavities. Most children get their first tooth around 6 or 7 months of age and dental care should begin promptly thereafter with a visit to the dentist, as well as, regular tooth brushing. One major risk for early childhood cavities is prolong consumption of sugary liquids, particularly allowing your child to fall asleep with a bottle of juice or milk. The extended contact with sugar increases the rate of tooth decay, having the potential to destroy the child’s entire set of teeth.

Additionally, it is important to have your children drink tap water as this is an easy and free way to provide them with the appropriate amount of fluoride to protect their teeth. Avoiding sticky foods and frequent snacks are other strategies to ward off cavities. Instilling these routines in childhood promotes their continuation into adult life and with more studies showing broad health benefits from dental hygiene it is essential.

This article was written by Dr. David B. Samadi is the Vice Chairman of the Department of Urology and Chief of Robotics and Minimally Invasive Surgery at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City. This article was published on March 28, 2012 on FoxNews.com.

http://www.foxnews.com/health/2012/03/28/dental-hygiene-important-for-whole-body-not-just-your-smile/

Call us at Dr. David P. Lunt, DDS, inc. to schedule your next pediatric dental checkup and cleaning today!  (818)885-7230

Dr. Lunt also proudly serves Burbank, San Fernando, Topanga Canyon, Valley Glen, Agoura, and surrounding areas.