San Francisco, Marin, and Oakland, CA
Lots of people associate going to the dentist with getting their teeth cleaned, or for the occasional filling or dental crown. But, there are other interesting facts about the Bay Area family dentists at Glen Park Dental. Our dentists provide care for patients of all ages, even children. Today on the blog, we are sharing four facts about our dental office in San Francisco.
We Offer Comprehensive Kids Care
Many (although not all) adults see the dentist for regular checkups and cleanings. But, did you know that kids should also have twice-yearly dental visits too? At Glen Park Dental, our preventive services for children’s dentistry include sealants, fluoride applications, x-rays for emergency visits, and dental cleanings and checkups for various ages. These appointments are crucial to a child’s growth and development, as well as their health. Beginning the journey of good oral health is most beneficial when started early in life. Children should start seeing the dentist by their first birthday or when their first tooth erupts.
Traditionally, getting braces isn’t even discussed until a child is at least 10 or so years of age. Most often is the case that children don’t get braces until they are a teenager. By this time, their bones have become settled, negative oral habits like tongue thrust or open-mouth breathing have long since occurred. Unfortunately, orthodontics only improves the effects of these habits. Braces don’t correct the bad habits that caused the malocclusion (crooked teeth) to begin with. This usually results in orthodontic relapse and the negative habits that caused the malocclusion to go unaddressed.
At Glen Park Dental, we offer pre-orthodontic screenings for children as young as four years old. The purpose of this screening is to identify negative oral habits early, and seek to resolve them, retraining the tongue and mouth muscles to properly function when breathing, swallowing, and when the mouth is at rest. These efforts sometimes avoid the need for orthodontics later in life, or at the very least, shorten the length of treatment should a child eventually need braces. This noninvasive approach actually addresses the underlying cause of crooked teeth and poor facial structure by correcting the source of the problem. Pre-orthodontic treatment for children may include Orthotropics®, Crozat & ALF Oral Appliances, or the Controlled Arch® Treatment System.
No Orthodontic Extractions
If your child is a bit older or already a teen that needs braces, we do not pull teeth to make room to straighten teeth. This approach is often recommended among traditional orthodontists. Still, research shows that extracting premolars for orthodontic purposes results in a narrow palate and underdeveloped jaw. This may lead to negative health consequences such as sleep-breathing disorders or temporomandibular joint disorder. Instead, we prefer to focus on forward face development and palatal expansion using noninvasive methods. This approach encourages an open airway so that your child is less likely to develop sleep apnea or TMJ disorder.
Sleep Apnea Screenings
Sleep apnea can inflict anyone of any age, even child as young as two years old. Unfortunately, most parents are unaware of their child’s irregular breathing patterns while sleeping, or the risk of untreated sleep apnea. At Glen Park Dental, we provide sleep apnea screenings for kids at our Oakland dental office. This quick and painless screening could protect your child from the risks associated with untreated sleep apnea, which only gets worse as they get older. Signs of sleep apnea in children include ADHD-like behavior, bedwetting, a loss of interest in once-loved activities, mouth breathing, and snoring. If your child has sleep apnea, it’s essential to get it diagnosed right away and work with your practitioner on effective solutions to manage your child’s sleep-breathing disorder.
Holistic Dentists in San Francisco
If you would like to learn more about our services or schedule a consultation, contact Glen Park Dental by calling (415) 585-1500. We welcome patients of all ages. Not every dental office in San Francisco offers these unique services, which is what makes Glen Park Dental the right choice for you and your family.