Pediatric Dental Services in Alpharetta & Johns Creek GA
Below you can find a complete list of all the pediatric dental treatment and services we offer here at Polkadot Pediatric Dentistry.
3300 School Form
The Georgia 3300 Form is required for all new first grade students and all students that are new to the state of Georgia. This form is also required for any students switching from a private to a public school. We can complete the dental portion of this form at Polkadot Pediatric Dentistry for you. Keep in mind that the exam has to be dated within 12 months of the enrollment day. Please contact us if you need to have this form completed.
Dental radiographs (x-rays) are essential, preventative and diagnostic tools that provide valuable information not visible during a regular dental exam. X-rays are necessary to help diagnose cavities located in between teeth, which we are unable to detect by a regular oral exam and it also provides us information regarding the size of the cavities. Not only do x-rays detect decay, but also it provides us information regarding the growth pattern of erupting permanent teeth. Dental x-rays are also used to evaluate results from trauma, diagnose any bone disease or oral pathology, abscess or cyst development, tumor development, and plan orthodontic treatment. Digital x-rays today have 80%-90% less radiation than traditional film radiography. If you want to learn more about x-rays, we have a dedicated page here.
When the fluoride is used in small amounts on a routine basis it helps to prevent tooth decay. It encourages “remineralization,” a strengthening of weak areas on the teeth and prevents acid from breaking down the teeth, decreasing the chance of tooth decay. Fluoride occurs naturally in water and in many different foods, as well as in dental products such as toothpaste, mouth rinses, gels, varnish and supplements. Fluoride is effective when combined with a healthy diet and good oral hygiene. Too little fluoride can increase your child’s risk for developing cavities. Tooth much fluoride can increase your child for developing fluorosis, which are white chalky spots over the enamel. Read more about dental fluoride treatments
A dental sealant is a protective coating that is place on pits and grooves of permanent chewing teeth (molars) where the toothbrush cannot reach. Dental sealants make the tooth a smoother surface to help prevent food from getting trapped inside the tooth, which will ultimately help prevent cavities from developing. The dental sealants are typically clear or white in color. Dental sealants typically last between three to five years. At your child’s cleaning appointments, Dr. Nanna will evaluate whether your child is a candidate for dental sealants, and will also evaluate whether your child’s dental sealants are still intact. Occasionally, a tooth may need a dental sealant touched up. Most children start receiving dental sealants around the age of 6-7, and another set around the age of 12-13. Read more about dental sealants
White Fillings and Restorations
A white filling is also known as a composite filling or a resin filling. They are made up of a plastic, glass and ceramic compound. When a patient has a small cavity, sometimes a white filling is needed to restore the tooth. White fillings mimic the color and appearance of natural teeth, and are typically not noticeable. White colored fillings provide good durability and resist fracture in small to medium sized fillings. They can be used on both back and front teeth. Unlike silver, amalgam fillings, less tooth structure is removed, and white fillings harden in seconds rather than needing a few days to harden and set. Most patients adapt to white fillings very quickly and post treatment sensitivity is minimal.
Young children may be afraid to get fillings at the pediatric dentist for the first time, but Dr. Nanna will explain the procedure thoroughly and show them the tools she uses to fill the cavities. Without fillings, cavities can get infected, leading to tooth decay and gum rot. We highly recommend children get their cavities filled. It's painless and easy! Read more about white fillings
Sometimes silver crowns made up of stainless steel metal are needed to restore a tooth that has a very large cavity. In cases where the decay is very large, a lot of tooth structure is removed off the tooth. When a lot of tooth structure is missing a regular white filling will not hold up, and will typically fracture or break the tooth if used. A silver crown will ensure that the tooth has a lower chance of fracturing, the entire tooth is covered with a protective structure, which will minimize the risk of developing a new cavity or infection on the tooth. In cases a baby root canal or pulpotomy is completed on a baby tooth or primary tooth, a stainless steel crown will be needed to restore the tooth, because the tooth is now fragile and needs a restorative material which will help the tooth last longer and prevent any possible tooth fractures or decrease the risk of a dental infection from developing. In order to place a stainless steel crown on a baby tooth, the tooth is first shaved down and a prefabricated silver crown is fitted on your child’s tooth and after the correct size is selected and your child’s bite is adjusted, the crown is cemented on the tooth using a special dental cement. To help increase the longevity of stainless steel crowns, it is encouraged that patients clean along the gum line of the crowned tooth and avoid eating hard, sticky foods, such as chewing gum, gummy snacks, and jolly ranchers. Read more about dental crowns
Baby Root Canal or Pulpotomy
Sometimes when a cavity is very large and your child is experiencing throbbing pain this may indicate that the cavity has approached the nerve of a baby tooth and it may be infected and inflamed. In situations like this a baby root canal may be necessary, which involves removal of the infected pulp (nerve and blood vessels) and placement of a special medicine on top of the nerve. A baby “root canal” is very different from an adult root canal. It only takes less than a few minutes to complete the procedure and additional visits are not needed!
If the tooth can be saved a root canal is the preferred method of treatment rather than pulling the baby tooth. It is important to retain the baby teeth as long as we can and allow it to fall out naturally. It helps a child to retain full function of their teeth, jaws and tongue, preventing speech problems, and it helps guide the permanent teeth into their proper places, preventing future orthodontic complications. Read more on our Baby Root Canals page
Sometimes a primary, “baby” molar tooth may fall out prematurely due to trauma, an infection or due insufficient space in the mouth. If the permanent tooth underneath this baby tooth is not close to eruption, a space maintainer may be indicated. A space maintainer is a small appliance used to preserve the empty space for the permanent teeth until it is fully developed and ready to erupt. If a space maintainer is not placed after early removal of a baby tooth, the teeth around the gap could drift into the empty space, creating insufficient space for the permanent teeth to properly come in causing crowding. These appliances are small in size and most children adjust to them after a few days. Special oral hygiene instructions and diet instructions will be given to help care for your child’s teeth and the space maintainer.
Also known as “laughing gas” or “happy air.” Nitrous oxide is used to put an anxious child at ease. Sometimes a child may feel slightly anxious during their dental treatment and nitrous oxide can create feelings of happiness and relaxation when inhaled. Nitrous oxide is a very safe sedative and effective technique with a rapid onset and is non-allergic. A fitted mask is placed over the nose and, as the patient breathes normally, uptake occurs through the lungs. At the end of treatment, it is eliminated after a short period of breathing oxygen and has no lingering effects. Children sometimes report dreaming and their arms and legs may feel “tingly.” It raises the pain threshold and may even make the time appear to pass quickly.
We usually recommend to give your child little or no food two hours prior to their dental visit. Sometimes, nitrous oxide can create fillings of nausea or vomiting when on a full stomach.
At Polkadot Pediatric Dentistry we are able to provide sedation means to help your child complete their dental treatment needs.
There are two different sedation options offered at Polkadot Pediatric Dentistry; conscious oral sedation and general anesthesia. Sedation dentistry may be needed if your child requires a lot of dental treatment, has special needs, or may have dental anxiety and as a result may be unable to sit still long enough to receive treatment. Dr. Nanna will help you and your family decide which sedation route may be the best option to treat your child. Factors to consider typically include: anxiety level, ability to cooperate, and required amount of treatment. You can find more information on conscious oral sedation and general anesthesia on our sedation dentistry page