Home|Preventative & Comprehensive Dental Care
At Ashburn Children’s Dentistry our pediatric dentists believe that prevention is always better than treatment. By actively preventing disease and decay through regular at-home care, professional dental cleanings, and regular exams, your child can maintain a healthy, beautiful smile. Effective prevention efforts can also help you avoid paying costly treatments in the future to remove decay, restore teeth, and treat gum disease. Regular prevention is truly your best investment for a long-lasting, beautiful smile and optimal oral health.
The best way to learn about our effective approach to preventive pediatric dental care is to schedule a discovery session at our practice. During this session, you’ll have the opportunity to get information about our unique philosophy and how it can specifically benefit your child’s smile at all phases of development.
Please click on a treatment option for more detailed information:
Dental examinations help to diagnose disease before it becomes hazardous to your child’s health. In addition, regular examinations can save money on costly treatments by preventing or alleviating problems while they are small and manageable to address. Without timely diagnosis and care, children’s dental issues can become expensive to repair, or in some extreme cases, impossible to repair.
Dental examinations performed at our office generally include the following:
At Ashburn Children’s Dentistry we want to set your child up for long-term dental success, and we cannot express enough how important it is to see our dentists regularly. Remember, preventing disease is always better than treating disease.
Professional teeth cleanings are a vital step in maintaining healthy teeth and gums. Cleanings at our office focus on removing plaque and tartar buildup, which harbors harmful bacteria that can damage the teeth and gums. Kids are also coached on proper brushing and flossing technique so that they can continue to perform good home care in between cleanings. Our team always keeps visits fun and the cleaning process gentle so that our young patients enjoy coming to see us!
Our pediatric dentists and the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry generally recommend that children receive prophylactic professional cleanings every six months. Due to the unique dental hygiene challenges posed by orthodontic treatment (braces), children and adolescents with braces should receive professional cleanings every three months.
Our practice welcomes and enjoys treating children and young adults with a variety of special healthcare needs. Our dentists and team provide sensitive, compassionate, gentle care and are mindful of the unique dental needs these patients may present. We strive to provide the personalized support each child requires to create a great experience during each and every visit. Our goal is always to help patients feel comfortable and relaxed so that they can achieve healthy, beautiful smiles. For patients who are good candidates, we offer sedation techniques which can alleviate fears and anxiety associated with visiting the dentist and undergoing dental treatment.
We understand that trusting us with the care of your child is a big decision that is not made lightly. If you are considering our practice for dental care, we encourage you to schedule a discovery session with us. This session will give us all the opportunity to get to know one and other and discuss how our practice can support your child in achieving optimal dental health.
Our ability to take digital X-rays is another effective method of prevention. Digital X-rays provide us with high-definition images of our patients’ teeth and the supportive bone, so that we can identify all areas in need of special attention and/or treatment. With children, not all tooth decay is visible, and X-rays allow us to see areas in between the teeth that cannot be seen or felt clinically. You will be happy to know that by using digital X-rays we help reduce the radiation dosage to our patients by 80%-90% (when compared with traditional film X-ray techniques).
We are the first pediatric dental office in the area to offer i-CAT™ 3D Scan technology. This cone beam computed tomography (CBCT) system allows us to capture clear three-dimensional images of our patients’ mouths, jaws, and airways for diagnoses and treatment planning. Read more about how we use our CBCT system on our technology page.
Fluoride treatment and fluoridated water can help children’s teeth become stronger and healthier. We offer fluoride treatment as a part of every continuing care appointment. If you reside in a community that does not have water fluoridation, we also provide age-appropriate recommendations for incorporating fluoride into your child’s diet. In some cases, we may provide prescriptions for fluoride supplements to ensure the health of your child’s permanent teeth in the future.
Icon® is an exciting new non-invasive treatment for preventing cavities and treating visible lesions in the enamel called “cariogenic” white spots. Icon eliminates the need for needles and drills, which can make treatment uncomfortable and anxiety producing. This exciting treatment involves resin infiltration (performed during a single session) to preserve healthy tooth structure and reinforce weak areas of a tooth to both prevent the need for fillings and extend its life expectancy. Icon has been studied internationally and has yielded incredibly positive results. We utilize Icon treatments to address early cavities between teeth, in addition to early cavities and cariogenic white spots on the tooth’s “smooth surface”.
Natural pits and grooves on the chewing surfaces of back teeth can trap food that cannot be removed by brushing or washed out by water or saliva. To prevent harmful bacteria from exploiting the natural topography of chewing surfaces and creating cavities, our dentists can place protective sealants over vulnerable areas identified during exams. A sealant is a tough, plastic material designed to bond (stick) to tooth enamel and protect against the formation of decay. For the safety of our patients we only use BPA-free sealants.
At Ashburn Children’s Dentistry we use state-of-the-art dental lasers to provide a wide range of effective dental treatments. These laser techniques are more efficient, conservative, and comfortable than traditional techniques and typically facilitate faster healing. Dental lasers can be used for treatment of cavities, soft tissue procedures, canker sore treatment, gum disease treatment, and more. We invite you to learn more about how we use our dental lasers by visiting our comprehensive laser dentistry page.
At Ashburn Children’s Dentistry we know how to put kids at ease. Our kid-friendly environment and use of child-friendly language help our young patients relax and enjoy going to the dentist. We also provide pillows and blankets that kids can cozy up with during treatment. For our more anxious patients, we offer effective pediatric sedation dentistry techniques which can help them relax comfortably. We even have an anesthesiologist for extremely fearful patients and those who require extensive dental work under IV sedation.
Nitrous oxide, more commonly known as “laughing gas”, is often used to provide conscious sedation during a dental visit. The gas is administered with a mixture of oxygen and has a calming effect that helps phobic or anxious patients relax during their dental treatment. Because it is a mild sedative, patients are still conscious and can talk to their dentist during their visit. After treatment, the nitrous is turned off and oxygen is administered for five to ten minutes to help flush any remaining nitrous oxide from the body. The effects wear off almost immediately. Nitrous oxide rarely has side effects, although some patients may experience minor nausea and constipation.
Intravenous sedation is typically recommended for extensive treatment, lack of cooperation due to young age, or sometimes children with special healthcare needs. A board-certified anesthesiologist (MD) provides IV sedation in our office and monitors your child from start to finish and during recovery. During IV sedation your child will be asleep and will not remember the procedures that have taken place—this ensures that they safely receive the treatment they need and helps prevent them from developing a fear of going to the dentist. The anesthesiologist will talk with you prior to the visit to provide the pre- and post-anesthesia instructions and answer any questions you may have.
If children are referred to our office by other pediatric dentists, they must be seen in our office for a discovery session so that we can develop a treatment plan, determine the amount of time needed in the operating room, and review instructions for the day of the surgery. Treatment is coordinated with the pediatric anesthesiologists at Children’s Hospital and is usually completed in one visit as an outpatient procedure.
In the past, if a child had a tooth where a cavity had infected the nerve, he or she would probably lose that tooth. Today, with a special dental procedure called a baby root canal, a child’s tooth may be saved.
Inside each tooth is the pulp or nerve. When a tooth is cracked or has a deep cavity, bacteria can enter the pulp and cause an infection inside the tooth. Without treatment the infection worsens and can build up in the jawbone, forming a “pus-pocket” called an abscess. An untreated abscess can create pain and swelling and cause the pulp tissue to die. Furthermore, certain byproducts of the infection can injure the jawbone tissue and negatively affect overall health. Without prompt root canal treatment, the tooth may have to be removed entirely.
For baby teeth, a partial root canal procedure called a pulpotomy can be performed. During treatment, our pediatric dentists remove the infected portion of the pulp and seal the remainder with a medication that restores the rest of the nerve.
When posterior teeth receive a root canal, a crown is placed over the treated tooth to strengthen its structure. Twice daily brushing and flossing, along with regular continuing care checkups, can keep the teeth and gums healthy and your child’s treated tooth will fall out naturally at the appropriate age.
A planned tooth extraction can present a great opportunity to bank your child’s stem cells for future therapeutic use. The StemSave™ system allows us to offer stem cell banking services using your child’s extracted teeth. With this approach, viable stem cells found in children’s teeth can be cryopreserved and used for personalized regenerative therapies at a later date. StemSave makes the process of securing, testing, and preserving stem cells easy and convenient for our patients. Prior to your child’s tooth extraction procedure, simply register at www.StemSave.com, and StemSave sends one of its patented transport kits to our office. The transport kit helps us to assure the highest probability of stem cell viability once the tooth has been removed.
At the time of the extraction, the teeth are deposited into the kit. The kit is then sealed and sent to StemSave’s laboratories where the teeth are processed and the cells are tested for viability. Upon positive viability, the cells are cryopreserved and available for utilization in future healthcare treatments.
For more information about the StemSave process and banking stem cells, please watch the video below:
Mouthguards mainly protect the teeth from sport injuries; however, they can help protect the lips, cheeks, tongue, and jawbone as well. Mouthguards can also aid in protecting against head and neck injuries, such as concussions. Most serious sports-related mouth and head injuries occur as the result of children not wearing mouthguards.
A mouthguard should be worn during any sports-based activity where there is a risk of head, face, or neck injury. Such sports include hockey, soccer, karate, basketball, baseball, skating, and skateboarding, as well as many other sports. Most oral injuries we see occur when children play basketball, baseball, and soccer.
Choose a mouthguard that is comfortable and offers the appropriate level of protection. If a mouthguard feels bulky or interferes with speech to a great degree, it is probably not appropriate for your child.
There are many options to choose from when looking for a mouthguard. While many mouthguards can be found in athletic stores, they vary in comfort, level of protection, and price. We have found that the least expensive tend to be the least effective in preventing oral injuries. At Ashburn Children’s Dentistry we offer high-quality customized mouthguards you can rely on to protect your child.
There are times when it is necessary to remove a child’s tooth. Sometimes a baby tooth has long or misshapen roots that prevent it from falling out as it should, and the tooth must be removed to make way for the permanent tooth to erupt. At other times, a tooth may have so much decay that it puts the surrounding teeth and jaw at risk of infection.
While tooth extraction procedures are typically very quick, it is important to discuss any concerns or preferences you have regarding the sedation of your child.
Once a tooth has been removed, the neighboring teeth may shift. Shifting teeth can cause problems with chewing or with jaw joint function. To avoid these complications, your dentist may recommend replacing the extracted tooth with a space maintainer to prevent loss of space and allow the permanent tooth to grow into its correct position.
Are you ready to start your child’s journey to optimal oral health and a beautiful smile? Please contact our practice to schedule a discovery session and learn all about the comprehensive preventative dentistry services and advanced treatments we provide.