Plainfield Pediatric Dentistry

Plainfield Pediatric Dentistry

Dr. Tom Maurice

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Pediatric Dental Services
in Plainfield, IL

Proudly serving the city of Plainfield, Illinois, Joliet, Naperville, and the surrounding areas

Here at Plainfield Pediatric Dentistry, we are proud to specialize in pediatric dentistry.

Our entire staff is very good with children. We know and understand how children think, so we can start them off right. We want them to believe the dentist’s office is a good place instead of being scared of it. We take our time with all patients so they have an enjoyable visit.

Our dentists and entire staff understand the importance of good oral health for young children. They have specialized training in primary teeth. They are here to help protect and restore children’s teeth so that they can speak and eat easily and have a wonderful smile. They understand the growth and development of children’s teeth so they can start children off with good oral health.

We also understand how important taking care of children’s teeth is. We will work with parents to ensure their children are taking good care of their teeth at home. We will also monitor their mouths for any problems so we can catch them early. If needed, we will work with your children’s regular doctor (or refer them to a specialist if needed) to treat any problems we find.

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Preventative Dentistry

Good oral hygiene removes bacteria and the leftover food particles that combine to create cavities. Brush children’s teeth at least twice a day. The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends visits every six months to the pediatric dentist, beginning at your child’s first birthday. Routine visits will start your child on a lifetime of good dental health.

Cleaning & Exam

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) recommends that you child visits the dentist for a check-up and cleaning every six months. During your visit a hygienist will thoroughly inspect the health of your child’s teeth and gums. The hygienist will also brush and floss your child’s teeth to help remove any built up plaque. The dentist will also exam your child’s teeth to determine if any further actions are needed.

Fluoride

Teeth are composed of many tiny pieces called molecules that attach to each other. Throughout the day these tiny pieces are constantly breaking apart and reforming depending on our diet. Fluoride can be thought of as a “glue” for these pieces by keeping the molecules more tightly bound together and less prone to breaking apart. Topical fluoride treatment is effective in protecting children’s teeth and reducing cavities.

Dental Sealants

Think of the top (chewing) surface of a tooth as mountains with many grooves. When your child eats, food gets caught in those grooves.  Although daily brushing is essential, applying a dental sealant will enhance the ability to keep those hard to reach areas clean. A dental sealant flows into the grooves “sealing” the tooth and reducing the probability of cavities. 

Digital X-rays

X-rays help assist dentists diagnose and treat conditions that cannot be seen clinically in the mouth. X-rays are important in finding and catching treatment early, in order to help avoid a more serious problem.

Dental x-rays are safe for your child and the amount of radiation your child is exposed to is minimal. We use lead aprons with a thyroid collar for the protection of you and your child. Pediatric dentists are mindful in minimizing the exposure of our patients to radiation. With that being said, dental radiographs are vital and represent a smaller risk than an undetected or untreated dental concern.

Restorative Dentistry

It is our goal to make your child’s dental appointment as easy and enjoyable as possible!  At Plainfield Pediatric Dentistry we promote healthy smiles in a friendly and compassionate environment. Our doctor and professional staff will discuss treatment options that will allow your child a stress-free dental experience. 

Tooth-Colored Fillings

Composite restorations are recommended when a baby tooth has a small to a medium-sized cavity. The affected tooth surface is removed and a tooth-colored resin material is placed. These can last several years and have high durability. White fillings are the best esthetic option for these small to mid-sized cavities. 

Crowns

Crowns are widely used in pediatric dentistry and are offered in both stainless steel (silver) and Zirconium (white).  Our pediatric dentist will help recommend the best option for your child. When decay has affected more than one-third of a primary tooth, or there has been extensive tooth structure loss, a crown is likely the best treatment. Crowns serve to stabilize and improve function until that tooth is ready to exfoliate. 

Pulpotomy

A pulpotomy is also known as a “nerve treatment” in a baby tooth. When tooth decay advances into the nerve or the pulp of the tooth, it often causes the toothache your child is experiencing. The inflamed and painful portion is removed and filled with a medicated powder. This helps to calm the nerve and to stop bacterial growth. The tooth is then often restored with a filling or a crown. 

Extractions

Dental extractions for baby teeth are common and sometimes necessary when either the tooth becomes damaged due to a trauma, has extensive decay, if the tooth becomes infected, or for orthodontic purposes. A pediatric dentist will try to preserve the baby tooth for as long as possible, but sometimes an extraction is in your child’s best interest. 

Space Maintenance

A primary “baby” tooth may be prematurely lost due to an extraction or a dental trauma. Baby teeth help set the foundation for the future eruption of permanent teeth. In order to hold the space for a permanent tooth to erupt, sometimes a metal space maintainer is placed. This avoids the possibility of teeth shifting, tilting, or most importantly space loss which can result in an issue with the eruption of the permanent tooth. 

Silver Diamine Fluoride

Silver Diamine Fluoride, commonly known as SDF, is a liquid made up of fluoride and silver ions that slows or prevents cavities from growing. It is an antimicrobial agent that helps to kill cavity-causing bacteria by hardening the tooth surface and limiting the growth of bacteria that causes tooth decay. 

Treatment is quick, comfortable, and affordable. SDF can help buy time until a child is old enough to tolerate sitting through traditional in-office treatment. In some cases, SDF may be the only treatment needed if the cavity in teeth are very small. 

Silver Diamine fluoride is safe and research has proven by the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry that it can postpone or even prevent the need for sedation and/or general anesthesia for very young patients.

Sedation Dentistry

Nitrous Oxide

Nitrous Oxide “laughing gas” is one of the safest sedatives in dentistry. It is well tolerated, has a rapid onset, is reversible, and can be adjusted as necessary.  Nitrous helps to reduce anxiety and/or helps reduce pain tolerance if your child is feeling nervous or uneasy about the visit. Your child is conscious throughout use and will be capable of responding to simple questions or requests. At the end of treatment, the nitrous oxide is flushed out of the system with the use of oxygen and your child will leave alert and well, with no lingering effects. Nitrous helps make the time pass quickly for our young children and those needing a little extra help getting through the visit. 

General Anesthesia

General Anesthesia is a controlled state of unconsciousness that helps eliminate awareness, movement, and discomfort during a dental treatment. General Anesthesia is performed by a licensed anesthesiologist and indicated for children unable to cooperate in a traditional dental setting, those needing extensive restorative or surgical treatment, and those with special health care needs.  This can be performed in the comfort of our office or AMITA Health Surgery Center located in Joliet, IL.