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    Fresh dental start for new school year

    submitted by Dr. Michael Spadafora, D.D.S., Bucks County Dental Design, buckscountydentaldesign.com

    The start of a new school year is just around the corner, so here are a few gentle reminders for the parents of school children.

    Toothbrushes wear out in about three months with regular use. While you shop for school supplies, pick up a few toothbrushes for the family. As the brushes get worn or the bristles splay out, the brushing is less effective and could actually be damaging to the gums.

    If your child is playing any contact sport, a mouth guard is an absolute must. A custom mouth guard from your dental office is ideal. This is because it is well made, fit to your child’s mouth and is more comfortable, which increases the chance that your child will wear it. At the very least, buy a mouth guard at a sporting goods store and insist that your child use it. Either option is a very small investment compared to the cost of replacing front teeth!

    There is still time to get your child to your dentist for a quick and cost-effective cosmetic make over before senior pictures. The price of bleaching has decreased in recent years and is a wonderful way to enhance the smile of your soon-to-graduate child. White fillings and cosmetic bonding are also nice options. You will spend a fair amount of money on these photos and you will be looking at them for a long time, so it makes sense to be happy about your child’s smile!

    College-bound students should get a dental checkup before leaving home. Most dentists will confirm that it is not unusual to get a call from an away-from-home student with a toothache. It is much better to address potential problems with your family dentist, while you have some control. Also, make the dental appointment now for your child’s winter break. Hygiene departments are usually very busy during that time.

    A new school year is a fresh start. Best wishes to all of your children for a happy and productive year!

    PHOTO CAP: Remember to get your kid’s dental appointments scheduled!

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