Hi everyone! Dr. Mark Lantzy here from Lantzy Children’s Dentistry in Roanoke, Texas, and today I’m joined by our very own Sparkles the Tooth Fairy! Earlier this year, we launched a regular video series on our YouTube channel called Tooth Talk Tuesday where we answer actual questions from our patients and their families about teeth and dental health. Today, Sparkles and I thought we would share with you some of our favorite Tooth Talk questions.
1. What holds my teeth in my mouth?
The roots of your teeth help hold them securely in place in your mouth.
2. How many teeth do I have?
You have 20 baby teeth and that usually lasts until you’re about five or six. Over the next several years you will gradually lose your baby teeth to make way for your adult teeth. You will have 32 adult teeth. But four of those are wisdom teeth. They don’t actually make you any smarter, so we usually let them go away. That makes a total of 28 teeth.
3. What can I do to prevent getting cavities?
Most of it is pretty easy. Brushing twice a day is huge – brush after breakfast and right before bed. And be sure to floss once a day right before bed. Also, a lot of people don’t know this, but If you can limit how much you snack and how long you snack for, that can be huge a huge help for cavity prevention. Pantry snacks tend to cause more cavities than fridge snacks. So watch out, and if you’re going to snack, be sure to drink lots of water.
4. What are dental sealants?
Your teeth have lots of grooves. And those grooves like to get the sugar bugs and food together and when that happens, they make cavities. Dental sealants cover everything over and smooth out the surface of the tooth so that the sugar bugs are easier to get out and the food doesn’t get trapped. They’re super helpful.
5. What should I do if I knock out a tooth?
If you knock out a baby tooth, in most circumstances no treatment is needed. It’s still a good idea to call your dentist though to be sure. If it’s an adult tooth, put it in some milk – or better yet, try to put it back in its socket and then definitely call your dentist right away.
6. What is fluoride?
Fluoride is something that we can put on your teeth to help them make them stronger. When I was growing up, our dentist told us that they made your teeth even harder, but nowadays they are finding that it puts a charge on the outside of the tooth that makes it more resistant to cavities, kind of like a forcefield, and that will help to keep the sugar bugs away.
7. What does a dentist actually do?
Well, a dentist is kind of like a teacher. We help you to learn how to take good care of your teeth and hopefully guide you along the way. And if we need to, we fix little things along the way so that the sugar bugs don’t hurt your teeth and you can just keep going. But we really just want to make sure you have a healthy, beautiful smile.
8. Should I be sharing my toothbrush with anyone?
Never. Not your brother or your sister, not your mother, not your best friend, and definitely not your dog.
9. What happens if I have a cavity?
If it’s a baby tooth, a lot of times our parents just want us to pull it. But if the cavity is small, we can usually just fix those up. That way, you still have all your teeth to chew with and eat all that good food. And you can keep brushing them. Then you can just give them to Sparkles when they fall out on their own.
10. What do x-rays show?
X-rays are kind of like superhero vision. They let us see things in your teeth that we could never see with our bare eyes. So sometimes if little bitty cavities start to form, we’ll see it on our x-ray and we can fix them up if we need to, or sometimes we can just watch it and say we’ll keep an eye on that for next time.