Children are especially welcome at Ballybunion Dental Care.

We recognise the importance of developing a positive attitude to dental treatment in young children so that a healthy mouth and a beautiful smile can be maintained throughout life. The International Association of Paediatric Dentistry and the Irish Dental Association recommend that children should have had their first visit to the dentist by one year of age. You are encouraged to bring your child for their first appointment as early as possible where it can be a positive and enjoyable experience and where a simple check up and introduction to the surgery can be carried out in a relaxed and fun atmosphere. It is not recommended that a child’s first experience of the dentist is one where intervention is required which may be upsetting and traumatic for the child.

Our practice philosophy is that prevention is better than cure. We believe good oral hygiene instruction and diet advice from an early age are essential in preventing future dental disease. During tooth cleaning appointments we provide tips for children and parents on effective toothbrushing. By carrying out a professional cleaning we gently introduce your child to dental treatment.

Fluoride strengthens teeth by seeping into the outer surface of the tooth enamel, making the teeth more resistant to decay. It is generally recommended that children have a professional application of fluoride twice a year during dental check-ups.

Sealants are plastic white coatings which are placed over the pits and fissures of certain teeth. They are recommended after six years of age on the first permanent molar teeth and help protect the teeth from decay.

If decay develops on a baby tooth it will slowly get deeper and bigger and may lead to toothache and infection. Early loss of baby molars can lead to teeth drifting into the space causing crowding and the need for costly orthodontic treatment. For these reasons decayed baby teeth should be filled where possible and practical.

When a baby tooth is extensively decayed fillings are unlikely to be successful due to the small size and fragile structure of baby teeth. In this situation, a stainless steel crowns may be recommended as it is much less likely than a filling to need to be replaced. With a stainless steel crown the whole tooth is covered, so future decay on that tooth is a lot less likely.

Silver Diamine Fluoride is an antimicrobial liquid medication that is proven to be very effective in arresting, or stopping, existing tooth decay. It is simply brushed onto the decayed surface and is especially helpful in small children who are unable to handle other treatments. Healthy tooth surfaces remain undisturbed, but tooth decay (which is usually brown in color) turns very dark, nearly black, after application.

Inhalation sedation is one of the best and safest ways to alleviate dental anxiety in children. It involves breathing in a special “happy air” (nitrous oxide and oxygen) through a small nose piece. This leads to a pleasant, relaxed floating feeling and helps children to remain calm and still, making treatment as easy and comfortable as possible.