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The Importance of Bringing Your Child to the Dentist Starting at a Young Age

May 16, 2013

Filed under: Pediatric Dentistry — Tags: , — Les Latner @ 4:03 pm

When the thought of having to visit a dentist sends chills down the spines of many adults, it is easy to see how terrifying the idea can be to small children. It may not be easy, but it is important to teach your little one that there is nothing to be afraid of, and that the dentist is there to help them and their teeth to grow healthy and strong. If you can establish a healthy and hygienic oral care routine in conjunction with regular dental check-ups, your child is much more likely to go through life without the need for extensive dental work later. shutterstock_18045289

Tips to Ease the Fear of Your Child

The best advice to help your child learn not to be afraid of the dentist is to start taking them while they are still very young. A child’s first dental check-up should take place as soon as their first tooth emerges or by the age of one at the latest. Setting regular dental exams as your child grows allows them to see the process as a fact of life. Regular dental exams also allows your child to grow up knowing their dentist personally, so they won’t be so frightened when one day you take them to a stranger who wants to poke around in their mouth.

Another thing to keep in mind when preparing your child for a dental appointment is your word choice. A small child will not understand terms like “cavity,” “filling,” or “root canal,” but others such as “shots” or “drilling” sound downright scary. Try to explain to your child in simple terms what the dentist does. One example is to explain to a child with a cavity that they have a “sick tooth” that the dentist needs to make better. By putting the procedure into terms that your child can relate to they will feel more comfortable during their visit.

Dr. Les Latner is Great with Children

Dr. Les Latner of Westside Dental Associates has more than 30 years of experience in dentistry. A graduate of the Washington University – St. Louis School of Dental Medicine, Dr. Latner completed his two year residency in pediatric dentistry at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles. In addition to this educational experience, Dr. Latner also served as the president of the Southern California Society of Dentistry for Children from 1995-1996 and as editor from 1992-1998, and is associated with the Academy of Pediatric Dentistry as well as the California Society of Pediatric Dentists. Dr. Latner understands the special needs and fears of children when they are visiting the dentist— especially for the first time—and is able to help calm them as he provides care to their teeth. Schedule a visit today and get your young one started on the path to a lifelong healthy smile.

Pediatric Dentistry and Your Child

January 31, 2013

We understand the importance of dental care for adults, but it’s equally important to care for the health of your child’s teeth as well. Pediatric dentistry is an important dental specialty recognized by the ADA. Dentists in this field are skilled and practiced at caring for the health of children’s teeth.

Your child should first go to a dentist when they are one year old. This may seem rather young, but cavities can occur at any age, and it’s important to get started on a health routine early.

When taking your child to the dentist, make sure you’re taking them to a pediatric dentist. They’re prepared and experienced at handling young children and their needs. They also know how to work with a small patient that may not always stay still. If you don’t know who you should take your little one to see, your general dentist may be able to provide a referral.

The pediatric dentist will examine your child’s teeth and go over health concerns and proper brushing techniques with you. The sooner you start taking your child to the dentist the better. You don’t want your child’s first dental appointment to end with them having to get a mouth full of fillings, as this could cause them to become fearful of the dentist. Their first dental memory needs to be a pleasant one, to instill in them that going to the dentist is important for the health of their teeth and gums.

A pediatric dentist can also give you advice about teething, thumb sucking, and information on how your child’s teeth will grow and develop. A pediatric dentist is an important resource.

Don’t forget, once your child is a year old, it’s time for their first dental appointment. Pediatric dentistry plays an important role in the dental health care system and in our own personal dental health. Dr. Les Latner is a trained pediatric dentist, having completed his residency at Children’s Hospital in Los Angeles.

Effective Pediatric Dentistry for the Los Angeles Area

October 9, 2012

Every smile is important, even a smile that’s still developing. That’s why Dr. Latner and his team at Westside Dental Associates in Los Angeles offer pediatric dentistry. Through our commitment to serving children as well as adults—and Dr. Latner’s commitment to teaching pediatric dentistry as UCLA—we’re helping patients of all ages enjoy better oral and overall health.

As is the case with caring for adults, the most important aspect of pediatric dentistry is the regular checkup. During a regular checkup, Dr. Latner can look for signs of tooth decay or gum disease, common dental conditions that have serious implications for overall wellbeing. What’s more, a pediatric checkup also gives Dr. Latner the opportunity to check on the development of teeth.

Our team also likes to take part of every pediatric dentistry visit to talk to our young patients about brushing and flossing. Effective brushing and flossing take practice and instruction. We can offer some of that in our Los Angeles office, but it’s up to parents to also provide instruction at home.

Is your little one nearing their first birthday? Then it’s time to start planning for their very first visit. Call Westside Dental Associates to schedule your child’s first (or second, or third…) visit. We want to see all of our young Los Angeles-area patients grow healthy smiles. Our team can work together with you to help them develop the healthy habits that will make that possible as they move from childhood into adolescence and adulthood.

Call us today!

Pediatric Dentistry for Young Patients in Los Angeles

March 19, 2012

If you have a young son or daughter and live in Los Angeles, one of the key questions on your mind might be, “When should I start bringing my child in for regular checkups?” The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that all children see a dentist around their first birthday, or by the time they have their first tooth.

Your child’s visit with Dr. Latner will consist of a simple exam and cleaning. What Dr. Latner wants to make sure of, more than anything, is that your child’s smile is developing as it should. We’ll also use your child’s first visit to begin teaching him or her about the basics of brushing and flossing.

Teaching your child to brush and floss isn’t something Dr. Latner can do alone, though. It’ll take the both of us to help your little one develop the kinds of healthy habits that will help them build a strong, health smile.

Are you ready to bring your son or daughter in to Westside Dental Associates for their first visit? Our entire team is ready to help. We understand that you have to treat a child’s smile just a little bit differently and have the experience to help him or her get started down a road that will help them lay the foundation for a healthy lifestyle.

Call us today. And to learn more about how we can help, visit our pediatric dentistry page. We serve patients of all ages from all throughout Los Angeles.

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