Interlachen Dental Associates
Find Us On:
5101 Vernon Ave, Edina, MN 55436
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Infant and Child Dental Need

When will my baby get their first teeth?
Usually the first two baby (primary) teeth come into the mouth are the two bottom front teeth. They will appear when your baby is about 6 to 8 months old.

What do I do when my baby is teething?
Babies are usually teething between the ages of 4 month through 2 years old. Their sore gums can often be soothed by gently rubbing the baby's gums with a clean finger, a small cool spoon, a wet cloth or a clean cool teething ring.

Are pacifiers and thumb sucking harmful for my child?
It is natural for babies to want to suck on something. If you notice that your baby wants to suck on something it is better if they suck on a pacifier rather than their fingers, thumb or a toy. Pacifiers are less likely to cause malocclusion and are easier to discontinue than thumb sucking. Make sure that you purchase pacifiers that have the ADA Seal of Acceptance. Do not let your baby use the pacifier all the time, only when necessary.

Is it true that drinking from a baby bottle causes tooth decay?

It is called Baby Bottle Tooth Decay or Baby Bottle Syndrome, which causes a dental condition which involves the rapid decay of the baby (primary) teeth. This condition is cause by frequent exposure of a child's teeth for long periods of time to liquids containing sugars (formula, milk or juice). Especially if your baby falls asleep with a bottle. Parents may not know that there is a problem until serious damage has already been done. Some suggestions to help protect your child from this condition are never allow you child to fall asleep with a bottle with anything but water in it, clean your child's teeth daily, don't let your baby use a bottle for more than one year and give your child water when they are thirsty.

How often should my child brush their teeth?

As soon as their first tooth appears, you brush their teeth after they eat or drink something other than water. Teach them good habits at an early age.

Is it necessary for my child to floss?
Yes. As soon as your child has multiple teeth that are side by side. It's a good habit to start for your child.

How old should my child be for their first dental visit?
We usually recommend a child come in for their first examination appointment around age three. However, you as a parent, should examine your child's mouth regularly. Dr. Gitzen's rule of thumb is, "if you look in their mouth and see anything that is not white (teeth) or pink (tissue), you should call our office or bring your child in for an exam."

What are good snacks to give my children?
Healthy snacks. Limit sugar and starchy foods. Offer your child foods that don't promote tooth decay such as vegetables, cheese or pretzels.

How do I help prevent my children from having dental decay/cavities?
Make sure your child develops good habits by eating a well balanced diet (limit sugars and starches) and maintaining good oral hygiene. Teach them by example is the best training you can give your impressionable child.

What is fluoride and how important is it?
Fluoride helps harden the tooth enamel and makes it more resistant to tooth decay. Fluoride can be delivered to the teeth through fluoridated water, using toothpaste and mouth rinses containing fluoride and professional fluoride gels that can be applied in the dental office or at home. For more information, talk with Dr. Gitzen or Dr. Nelson or visit the American Dental Association's website at

What should I do to teach my child good oral hygiene?

Help your child to develop good daily habits of eating a well balance diet, including limiting sugars and starches. Also, promote good oral hygiene by helping your child brush and floss everyday and to visit their dentist regularly. Remember, teaching by example is the best training you can give your impressionable child.

What are sealants?
Sealants are made of a liquid plastic filling material we place on the chewing surface of your tooth to keep out harmful germs and bacteria. They can prevent future cavities from developing. Sealants are routinely placed on children's permanent molars and bicuspids as early as age six.

What should I do if my child has a toothache?

Rinse the irritated area with warm salt water. Gently floss between the teeth to ensure there is no food or other debris caught between the teeth. Place a cold compress on the child's cheek if there is swelling. Call our office if pain persists or if you have any questions.