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Early Dental Visits Mean Healthier Teeth for Life

A recent survey from the C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital in Michigan shows that one in six parents who have received no advice from doctors are likely to wait until age 4 or older to seek dental care for their children, even though the recommendation from the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Dental Association suggest dental care should begin no later than age 1 or when the first teeth appear.

Early dental visits are extremely important in promoting a lifetime of healthy teeth and oral health habits, said Dr. David Buck, founder of Balance Epigenetic Orthodontics in Lynnwood, Washington.

"Not only is it vital to form healthy habits and observe the growth of the teeth, but it’s also important for parents to learn proper brushing techniques and other oral health education," he said.

First visits to the dentist are often more about forming healthy habits for the parent and child than they are about actually cleaning the teeth. If a child has been to the dentist several times before they turn 5, they’re more likely to be comfortable with the experience and the chances of developing dental anxiety are lowered. It also helps reinforce the belief that dental care is an important part of their life that should be a regularly scheduled and prioritized habit.

"Most first visits only last 20 to 30 minutes," said Buck. "They get to see the chair and sit in it, look at the tools and learn how each one works, and just become comfortable with the experience in general."

Dental Caries Is the Most Common Childhood Chronic Disease

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control reports that 40 percent of American children experience tooth decay by kindergarten, an alarming statistic given that cavities and decay are preventable. Early childhood caries is the presence of one or more decayed, missing or filled tooth surfaces in a child up to age 6. The American Dental Association says in its statement about early childhood caries that it is a public health problem in both the general population and among specific population groups.

Public health programs such as Women, Infants and Children (WIC) and Head Start have integrated dental wellness and education support to help bridge the gap between lower-income families and their access and knowledge of dental health.

"One of the most common causes of early childhood caries is bottles, cups and nursing throughout the night causing milk, and in turn the sugars found in milk, to sit on the teeth or gums," said Buck. "Many parents don’t know this information, which is why these early visits can be pivotal in helping them understand how to keep their children’s teeth healthy."

It’s not just about the cost or inconvenience of caring for a cavity after it has formed, either. Children with poor oral health suffer in many ways. The impact poor oral health has on their education is more profound than most realize. Research published in the American Journal of Public Health found that children with poor oral health were three times more likely to miss school than their healthier peers as a result of dental pain. Improving the oral health of America’s children could in turn help them live healthier, happy and more fulfilled lives.


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Epigenetic Orthodontics can open and protect the airway enhancing breathing both during sleep and awake activities.

Dr. Buck practices a philosophy that integrates airway into all diagnosis and treatments. Dentistry has traditionally not considered the airway when planning dental treatments. Fortunately, today there is a rapidly growing movement that now recognizes how dentistry can have an impact on the airway which affects breathing during sleep. If dental treatments, including TMJ, orthopedic and orthodontics are well planned the result can be that the airway is protected or even enhanced. There is a clear link between underdeveloped and retruded jaws together with narrow dental arches that puts a patient at risk for sleep breathing disorders.

Please visit this site for more information; Airway Health

WOW! A 54% decrease in forward head posture; 164% increase in the antero-posterior size of the airway; 176% increase in the lateral size of the airway all from epigenetically centered jaw development orthopedics. This is the future of orthodontics!​