Taking Your Child To The Dentist Will Build Healthy Habits

While it can seem daunting to take a testy toddler to a dentist appointment, it’s essential that children as young as one have their teeth assessed to catch any early concerns.  Typically, these visits are usually short and involve little treatment.  But getting a jump start now can save you time and the expense of having to be referred to a pediatric specialist or surgeon if specific issues go undetected.

Preparing for the First Dentist Visit

It is best that kids see a dentist by the time they turn one. Then twice-yearly after that. Regular visits combined with the right home care will keep their teeth pearly white all through childhood.


Remember, for toddlers; their first visit can be a scary adventure. Weird instruments, lots of loud noises, and new people can rattle even the most laid-back 2-year-old. However, with careful preparation maybe some bribery, a first trip to the dentist can be fun.


The first exam will consist of checking your child’s teeth for decay, look at their bite and check any other potential issues with the gums, jaw and oral tissues.  Then any teeth will be cleaned and determine the need for fluoride. Some  first visit topics for discussing include:

  • Proper teeth brushing practices for your child’s teeth and gums
  • Fluoride needs
  • Cavity prevention
  • Developmental milestones
  • Oral habit such as thumb sucking. Tongue thrusting and lip sucking
  • Teething
  • Proper Nutrition


The Importance of the First Dentist Visit

Besides checking your child’s teeth for any concerns and discussing the proper cleaning methods, it’s important to get your child used to healthy oral hygiene habits. Getting them started now with the proper dental care routine, will ensure they continue taking exceptional care of their teeth well into adulthood.


Your child my only have a gummy grin studded with just a couple of freshly sprouted teeth or showing off a mouthful of pearly whites, regular dental care with a dentist they are comfortable with will help build their confidence with their dental visits.


We recommend seeing children every six months to help them get used to going to the dentist.


Healthy Dental Practices at Home

Try these healthy at home tips to keep your child on the path to a bright smile.


  • Curb sucking habits early. They lead to crooked or mis-aligned teeth and possible overbite.
  • It’s best to help your toddler brush after breakfast and before bed and recommended by the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry children under eight brush with guidance from parents.
  • Pick a soft, kid-size brush. Swap with a new brush every three months. A pea-size amount of toothpaste on your child’s brush is plenty. This amount is adequate fluoride and will prevent fluorosis, a possibly damaging oral condition caused by over-ingestion of fluoride.
  • Avoid starchy and sugary snacks. They will stick to teeth and increase the risk of decay.
  • Contact your local water department to see if your water is fluoridated and talk to your dentist about the best fluoride treatment
  • If your child is not able to brush, rinse their mouth with water to wash away food particles and sugar.


To learn more about children’s dentistry, visit our website or call us today.

5 Reasons Why You Should Maintain Healthy Gums

The foundation for a healthy mouth is your gums. Neglecting them can lead to issues such as Gingivitis, a common mild form of gum disease. Gingivitis can occur causing irritation, redness, and swelling (inflammation) of the area surrounding the gum  at the base of your tooth called the gingiva.  Gingivitis left untreated can lead to a much more severe gum disease called periodontitis as well as tooth loss.


While losing teeth is very concerning,  gum disease can result in other significant health issues as well.

Major Health Issues Associated with Periodontal Disease


Diabetes — Patients who suffer from diabetes along with periodontal disease may have increased trouble regulating their blood sugar than diabetic patients with healthy gums.


Stroke — Gum disease raises the risk of the kind of stroke that is created by blocked arteries.


Premature births — A woman with gum disease during pregnancy may be more likely to deliver her baby too early. The infant may have a higher chance of low birth weight.


Atherosclerosis and heart disease — Gum disease increases the chance of obstructed arteries, heart disease, and is believed to worsen existing heart disease.


Respiratory disease — Bacteria related to gum disease may worsen existing lung conditions or lead to new lung infections. It is imperative for senior adults in assisted living facilities such as nursing homes maintain good dental hygiene. They are at a higher risk for bacteria from the mouth traveling to the lungs resulting in severe pneumonia.

Gum Disease Warnings You Should Not Ignore

Healthy gums are firm and pale pink fitting tightly around the teeth, indications of gingivitis might include the below:

  • Swollen or puffy gums
  • Your gums bleed when brushing or flossing
  • Dusky red or dark red gums
  • Tender Gums
  • Receding Gums
  • Bad breath


If you have any of notice any of the above symptoms, you should contact us immediately to schedule an appointment. The sooner you schedule a gum examination, the better the chances are the damage caused by gingivitis can be reversed and prevent its progression to periodontitis.

Is Invisalign Right For Me ?

Invisalign® is the clear alternative to braces by treating crooked and crowded teeth in adults in teens. Customized to each patient’s needs, Invisalign®  uses a method to efficiently and comfortably move to teeth to make them straighter can healthier.


Reasons to Straighten Your Teeth

Ever notice how someone with a nice smile, makes you want to smile? A beautiful, healthy smile will make a hugely positive impression on your life and those that you come in contact with. A beaming straight smile will improve not only how others perceive you but how you see yourself. People donning bright, perfectly aligned healthy teeth show higher self-esteem and radiate confidence. Many adults, in addition to teens, and children have improved their lives and their health by getting their teeth and their bites corrected.


Believe it or not, straight teeth are actually healthier teeth. The reason being straight teeth are likely to get fewer cavities, have a lower risk factor for discoloration, uneven wear and fractures. Your gums are healthier too and reducing your chances of developing periodontal (gum) disease. Another bonus is you can chew anything you want when your teeth are straight and your gums are healthy. People with corrected teeth have less sensitivity to heat or cold and you reduce the risk of other painful and expensive dental problems.


Ideal Candidates for Invisalign Treatment

Invisalign® is an appropriate solution for those that are embarrassed by crooked or crowded teeth or do not have optimal oral health. Those with careers in fields where they meet new people such as sales may choose this method of treatment over traditional braces for aesthetic reasons. Dr.  Mothana Al-Taee will let you know if this solution will fit your needs.  Invisalign®  uses a series of custom-shaped, plastic aligners to correct the position of teeth and are so discreet most people will not ever notice them. While the detailed number of Invisalign® aligners needed to achieve optimal results will depend on your unique orthodontic needs, each consecutive aligner will be created to apply the necessary pressure to guide your teeth to their ideal position. Each retainer will be worn for about two weeks before it needs to be replaced. Overall, the course of treatment should require about the same amount of time as treatment with traditional braces. Aligners should be worn 24 hours a day, except during meals and while brushing and flossing.


If moving your teeth without the whole world knowing you are undergoing treatment sounds ideal, Invisalign may be your answer. Once treatment is complete, your trays are no longer necessary. A retainer will be required to be worn each day to protect your new smile. As always it is important to maintain routine dental check-ups and twice-yearly cleaning.


Why Choose Heron Park Dental?

Looking for an expertly trained and friendly dentist in the Nepean, Ottawa, Canada? Look no further than Heron Park Dental.

Dr.  Mothana Al-Taee and his team at Heron Park Dental genuinely love to see you smile.  They take great pride in practicing the most up-to-date cosmetic dental procedures in a comfortable, welcoming atmosphere, practiced by the most knowledgeable and experienced cosmetic dentists in the field. They know when they see you smile that is the sign that they have done their job, giving you the highest level of care in the industry.


If you or a loved one are looking straighten crooked, misaligned teeth without the look of traditional braces, please call Heron Park Dental for an initial appointment and consultation!