The Canadian Dental Association (CDA) recognizes that as a parent, you have a big role to play in keeping your child’s teeth healthy, clean, and to help prevent cavities through good eating habits and daily cleaning of the teeth.
At Westwood and Starwood Dental, our over 37 years of service to Guelph includes working with every patient to design a comprehensive plan for lifelong dental health that is tailored to their individual needs. For our younger patients, our main focus is on preventing dental problems down the road. For our adolescent and adult patients in addition to prevention, our reliable and professional family dentists address the oral health concerns affecting every generation.
Pediatricians concerned about tooth decay say Canadian children need better access to dental care. A 2013 CBC news story citing the Canadian Pediatric Society said “Children with rotting baby teeth or “early childhood caries” can suffer poor growth, behavioural problems, poor learning, and sleep loss.” Diet, bacteria, social factors like income, prolonged bottle feeding (baby bottle symdrome) and drinking too much juice all contribute but this tooth decay can be prevented.
Canada also ranks second last among members of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development in public financing of dental care:
- 57 per cent of Canadian children age six to 11 have had a cavity.
- Prevalence of early childhood caries ranges from six per cent in cities to more than 90 per cent in some Indigenous communities.
- Children from the lowest income families show decay rates 2.5 times higher than those from higher income families.
- 62 per cent of Canadians have private dental insurance, six per cent have public insurance and 32 per cent have none.
- 45 per cent of community water supplies in Canada are fluoridated.
Sources: Canadian Pediatric Society, Canadian Health Measures Survey
The Canadian Association of Public Health Dentistry also endorses community water fluoridation as an important public health measure to prevent dental caries (tooth decay) in a population.
A study published in Pediatric Dentistry in 2014 entitled Do Early Dental Visits Reduce Treatment and Treatment Costs for Children? suggests that it may benefit children to see a dentist before age four and offers evidence that early intervention efforts in oral health are both clinically effective and cost effective. Parents can find further recommendations for dental care for children and infants from the American Dental Association at MouthHealthy.org.
The CDA recommends the assessment of infants, by a dentist, within 6 months of the eruption of the first tooth or by one year of age. Here are three reasons the CDA promotes for taking your child for dental exams:
- You can find out if the cleaning you do at home is working.
- Your dentist can find problems right away and fix them.
- Your child can learn that going to the dentist helps prevent problems.
A dental exam every six months afterwards will let your child’s dentist catch small problems early while focusing on prevention and good oral health practices.
Westwood & Starwood Dental also accept the Healthy Smiles Ontario Program. This is a government sponsored program designed to assist lower income families access free dental care for children under the age of 17. It is important that all children have access to dental care.
If you have questions about your child’s oral health care our friendly staff offer a full range of dental care treatments for you or your whole family in Guelph. Our facility offers wheelchair accessibility, free parking, we handle all types of insurance, and financial arrangements are also available upon request.
To make an appointment - give us a call at one of our two locations - Westwood Dental Group, 530 Willow Road at 519-836-4650 and Starwood Dental Group, 235 Starwood Drive at 519-766-1000 - today. Service is available in English, Korean, Arabic, and French for your convenience.