Pediatric Dentistry

Dental Services in Alexandria, VA

Braces (Orthodontics)

Many children are ambivalent about getting braces. On the one hand, they like the idea of perfect teeth, but on the other hand they are nervous about whether the braces will cause pain and discomfort. The good news is that the placement of orthodontic braces is not at all painful, and the end result will be a beautiful straight smile. Although patients of any age can benefit from orthodontic braces, they tend to work much quicker on pre-teens and teenagers since they are still experiencing jaw growth. Please ask our doctors if your child can benefit from orthodontic braces.

Nitrous Oxide (Laughing Gas)

Nitrous oxide, or "laughing gas", is used as a mild sedative. It is delivered through a nose hood, and is administered throughout the entire procedure. Nitrous oxide elevates the general mood and can evoke a general sense of well-being. Most importantly, it relieves anxiety and reduces pain during the procedure. In addition, some tingling and numbness may be felt. There are few side effects associated with nitrous oxide, and it has been safely used in dentistry for many years.

Sealants

Tooth decay has become increasingly prevalent in preschoolers. Not only is tooth decay unpleasant and painful, it can also lead to more serious problems like premature tooth loss and childhood periodontal disease. Dental sealants are an important tool in preventing childhood caries (cavities) and tooth decay. Especially when used in combination with other preventative measures, like biannual checkups and an excellent daily home care routine, sealants can bolster the mouth's natural defenses, and keep smiles healthy.

Dental sealants do not enhance the health of the teeth directly, and should not be used as a substitute for fluoride supplements (if the dentist has recommended them) or general oral care. In general however, sealants are less costly, less uncomfortable, and more aesthetically pleasing than dental fillings.