Dr. Jay Holthus
134 Hospital Dr.
Lewisburg, PA 17837
570-522-7070

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FAQ

  • When should my child first see a dentist?

    "First visit by first birthday" sums it up. Your child should visit a pediatric dentist when the first tooth erupts, usually between 6 and 12 months of age. At Pediatric Dentistry of Lewisburg, we offer a FREE comprehensive exam, cleaning and fluoride treatment for all infants 12 months of age and under. An early examination and preventative care will protect your child's smile now and in the future as well as detect any oral and facial abnormalities.

  • Why should my child see a pediatric dentist instead of our regular family dentist?

    Pediatric dentistry is a dental specialty that focuses on the oral health of young people. Following the four years of dental school, a pediatric dentist has 2-3 years of additional specialty training in the unique needs of infants, children and adolescents, including those with special health needs. At Pediatric Dentistry of Lewisburg, our staff is committed to making your child's first dental experience an exciting and enjoyable experience. Our patients love playing video games and watching movies on the ceiling mounted flat screen TV's during treatment!

  • How will Dr. Jay and the staff of Pediatric Dentistry of Lewisburg help my child feel comfortable?

    Pediatric dentists are trained in many methods to help children feel comfortable with dental treatment. For example, in the "Tell-Show-Do" technique, Dr. Jay might name a dental instrument, demonstrate the instrument by using it to count your child's fingers, then apply the instrument in treatment. But by far the most preferred technique is praise. Every child does something right during a dental visit and Dr. Jay, our hygienist, and our assistants will never hesitate to let them know that!

  • When should I start cleaning my baby's teeth?

    The sooner the better! Starting at birth, clean your child's gums with a soft infant toothbrush and water. Remember that small children do not have the dexterity to brush their teeth effectively on their own. Unless it is advised by your pediatric dentist, do not use fluoridated toothpaste until your child demonstrates the ability to properly rinse and spit out the excess toothpaste.

  • When do the first teeth start to erupt?

    At about 6 months, the two lower front teeth (central incisors) will erupt, followed shortly by the two upper incisors. The remainder of the baby teeth appear during the next 18-24 months but not necessarily in an orderly sequence from front to back. At 2-3 years, all of these 20 primary teeth should be present. Pediatric Dentistry of Lewisburg recommends a child be seen by a pediatric dentist shortly after the eruption of the first tooth or no later than the first birthday. We offer a FREE comprehensive exam, cleaning and fluoride treatment for all infants 12 months of age and under. An early examination and preventative care will protect your child's smile now and in the future as well as detect any oral and facial abnormalities.

  • What is baby bottle tooth decay and how can I prevent it?

    Baby bottle tooth decay, or early childhood caries, is a pattern of rapid decay associated with prolonged nursing. It occurs when a child goes to sleep while breast-feeding and/or bottle feeding. During sleep, the flow of saliva is reduced and the natural self-cleansing action of the mouth is diminished. Avoid nursing children to sleep or putting anything other than water in a bed time bottle. Encourage your child to drink from a cup as they approach their first birthday. He/she should be weaned from the bottle at 12-24 months. A sippy cup containing juice or milk is very harmful to the health of your child's teeth if he/she is taking small, frequent sips throughout the day. Limit the drinking of milk and juice to mealtime and fill a sippy cup with water only to be used between meals.

  • My daughter loves juice – do the words "no sugar added" or "100% juice" on the label mean that it is safe for my child's teeth and diet?

    NO!! Many well-known manufacturers label their juice labels with the words "No sugar added", but what they do not tell you is that natural fruit sugar (fructose) is already naturally present in very high quantities. All fruit juice contains sugar – it just may not contain any other "added" high-fructose corn syrup. For example, grape juice (100% juice with no sugar added) contains as much as 60 grams of sugar per 12 oz. – that's equivalent to 15 teaspoons of sugar! Cavities are formed when the bacteria in the mouth feed on the sugar available in the foods we eat. The bacteria does not care what type of sugar (lactose in milk, fructose in juice) it is, just that it is present. The sugars in your food or drink cause the bacteria in plaque to produce acids that attack the tooth enamel. With time and repeated acid attacks, the enamel breaks down and a cavity forms. Here at Pediatric Dentistry of Lewisburg, we recommend your child drinks milk or juice at mealtimes only. Throughout the rest of the day, your child should be drinking water or drinks artificially sweetened with products such as Splenda. We love Aquafina Flavorsplash water and Crystal Light – they contain no sugar, no calories and taste fantastic!

  • Is my child receiving enough fluoride?

    Fluoride has been shown to dramatically decrease a person's chances of getting cavities by making teeth stronger. Fluoride in the drinking water is the best and easiest way to get it, but many water districts do not automatically fluoridate the water supply. To inquire about the status of the drinking water in your area, contact your local municipal building. Your pediatric dentist or pediatrician can prescribe fluoride supplements if necessary. Below is an incomplete list of the known fluoridated water supplies within the Susquehanna Valley. Every effort was made to ensure this list is accurate, however, we do suggest verifying this information in the event there has been a change. For a complete listing of community water sources, visit www.actionpa.org/fluoride.

    Centre County
    Bellefonte Borough Water Authority
    Clinton County
    Central Clinton County Water Authority
    City of Lock Haven Water Department
    Suburban Lock Haven Water Department
    Columbia County
    None
    Lycoming County
    Williamsport Municipal Water Authority
    Montour County
    None
    Northumberland County
    Sunbury Municipal Water Authority
    Snyder County
    Shamokin Dam Borough
    Selinsgrove Municipal Water Authority
    Penn Township Municipal Authority
    Union County
    None
  • Toothpaste: when should we begin using it and how much should we use?

    Fluoridated toothpaste should be introduced when a child is 2-3 years of age. Prior to that, parents should clean the child's teeth with a soft-bristled toothbrush and water only. When toothpaste is used, only a pea-sized amount (or half the size of your child's pinky nail) should be placed on the brush. Encourage children to spit out excess toothpaste after brushing.

  • Can thumb sucking be harmful to my child's teeth?

    Thumb and pacifier sucking habits that go on for a long period of time can create crowded, crooked teeth and/or bite problems. Attempt to end a pacifier habit as soon as possible as the pacifier serves as an object in which the child's face grows around. The extended use of a pacifier or thumb will lead to flared front teeth, a narrow palate, and a tongue thrust which will affect proper speech development. If a child is still sucking his/her thumb or fingers when the permanent teeth arrive, a mouth appliance may be recommended. Most children stop these habits on their own, but if this is a concern, speak with Dr. Jay about possible solutions.

  • What are dental sealants and how do they work?

    Sealants are clear or shaded pieces of plastic that are applied to the teeth to help keep them cavity-free. Sealants fill in the grooved and pitted surfaces of the teeth which are difficult to clean. They will shut out the food particles that may become lodged and therefore contribute to the formation of cavities.

  • What are tooth-colored fillings and the advantages associated with them?

    Tooth-colored fillings are made from durable plastics called composite resins. Similar in color and texture to natural teeth, the fillings are less noticeable, and much more attractive than other types of fillings. Your child can smile, talk and eat with confidence. In addition, tooth-colored fillings are compatible with dental sealants. A tooth can be filled and sealed at the same time to prevent further decay.

  • If my child gets a cavity in a baby tooth, should it be filled?

    Primary, or "baby", teeth are important for many reasons. Not only do they help children speak clearly and chew naturally, they also aid in forming a path that permanent teeth can follow when they are ready to erupt. Some of them are necessary until a child is 12 years old or longer. Pain, infection of the gums and jaws, impairment of general health and premature loss of teeth are just a few of the problems that can happen if the primary teeth are neglected. Also, because tooth decay is really an infection and will spread, decay on baby teeth can cause decay on permanent teeth. Untreated dental decay can lead to oral abscesses and facial infections that may not only require antibiotic treatment, but hospitalization and surgery as well.

  • If my child gets a toothache, what should I do?

    See us as soon as possible. To comfort your child, rinse his/her mouth with warm saltwater and apply a cold compress or ice wrapped in a cloth on your child's face if it is swollen. Do not apply heat or aspirin to the sore area, but you may give the child acetaminophen (Tylenol) for pain.

  • How safe are dental x-rays and what are the advantages of digital x-rays?

    While the amount of radiation received during an ordinary dental x-ray is already extremely small, we further decrease that exposure by using digital dental x-ray technology at Pediatric Dentistry of Lewisburg. Dental x-rays are among the lowest radiation dose exams of any diagnostic procedure in the medical field. Current practices deliver patient doses from a full-mouth series of intraoral films that are less than what a person receives in less than a month from natural environmental sources. While digital x-rays offer the advantage of an 80% reduction in radiation exposure, they also produce a nearly instantaneous dental image on a computer, eliminate the need for film or processing chemicals, and allow for an ability to use color contrast in the image. The image can be stored on a computer to allow for digital comparison to previous radiographs. Not only is digital x-ray technology a valuable resource for Dr. Jay when communicating a specific treatment plan to parents, the kids think the color images are "really cool"!

  • What should I do if my child knocks out a permanent tooth?

    First of all, remain calm. If possible, find the tooth and hold it by the crown rather than the root. Rinse with plain water, but do not clean the tooth more than necessary. Replace the tooth in the socket and hold it there with clean gauze or a washcloth. If you can't put the tooth back in the socket, place the tooth in a clean container with milk and take your child and the glass immediately to your pediatric dentist or nearest emergency room. The faster you act, the better your chances are of saving the tooth.

  • Do special children have special dental needs?

    Most do. Some special children are very susceptible to tooth decay, gum disease, or oral trauma. Others require medication or a diet that is detrimental to dental health. Still other children have physical difficulty with effective dental habits at home. The good news is, dental disease is preventable and here at Pediatric Dentistry of Lewisburg, every effort is made to make your special child feel comfortable and safe during treatment. We will provide a custom treatment plan tailored to fit your child's needs.