Grosse Pointe Pediatric Dental Services | Preventive

Preventive Dentistry In Grosse Pointe

Our full-service Grosse Pointe pediatric dentist office offers patients a wide variety of preventive dental services for children of all ages. From infants and teens to young adults, Toothworks Pediatric Dentistry is here to serve you!

While many of these services are often seen as routine for young children, they are vital to the proper growth and overall health of your child and should not be overlooked.

Dr. Dawn Harvey and her team at Toothworks Pediatric Dentistry are committed to helping your child enjoy healthy teeth throughout their childhood and working with you to help them build a strong foundation for a lifetime of oral health.

If you have questions about any of our dental services or a service not listed here, please contact us here or call our office directly at 313.343.8790.

Click below to learn more about our preventive dental services:


The best way to prevent excessive plaque buildup is to schedule a preventive care visit every six months. Plaque that is left untreated can lead to unhealthy gums and tooth decay. The gentle and professional cleanings performed at Toothworks Pediatric Dentistry will help your child preserve their teeth and gums. If you have not scheduled your child's next preventive care appointment, contact our Grosse Pointe pediatric dental office today.

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In order to maintain a healthy smile, it is important that the dentists at Toothworks Pediatric Dentistry perform comprehensive examinations of your childs overall oral health. Using advanced dental technology, we can effectively monitor the condition of your childs teeth and identify early signs of decay.

Comprehensive exams allow our professional team to assess the condition of your childs gums and their position along their teeth. Early detection of periodontal disease can save your childs smile. Our knowledgeable team will work with you to develop an examination schedule that matches your childs oral health requirements.

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Oral Cancer Screenings

In America, oral cancer kills more people each year than skin and cervical cancer combined. At our Grosse Pointe pediatric dental practice, we perform oral cancer screenings utilizing visual inspection and manual palpation. In addition, we have the latest technology in oral cancer detection.

Our oral cancer screening system helps your Grosse Pointe dentist visualize abnormalities in the mucosal tissues of your child's lips, mouth and upper throat. An oral cancer screening examination will allow your dentist to more accurately assess your child's overall oral health.

To ensure that your mouth is as healthy as possible, request an oral cancer exam during your next visit to the dentist or contact us for more information.

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Sealants are clear or shaded resin applied to the teeth to help keep them cavity-free. Sealants fill in the grooved and pitted surfaces of the teeth, or the hard-to-clean back surfaces of your front teeth. Sealants keep food particles from getting caught, which could cause cavities. Fast and comfortable to apply, research shows that sealants can effectively protect teeth for many years if they are properly cleaned and checked up at regular preventive care appointments.

If your child has good oral hygiene and avoids biting hard objects, the sealants will last longer. Dr. Harvey will check the sealants during your child’s preventive care visits and may recommend repairing or reapplying them as necessary. Sealants can be applied to permanent or primary (baby) teeth, however most insurances do not pay for sealants on primary teeth. Dr. Harvey will recommend what she feels is best based on your child’s individual needs.

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Oral Hygiene Instructions

Children’s hands and mouths are different than adults. They need to use toothbrushes designed for children with bigger handles and soft, rounded bristles for gentle cleaning. Change to a new brush about every three months or earlier if the bristles become frayed.

For infants, wipe the teeth gently with moist gauze or a clean soft cloth. As babies grow, use a child’s toothbrush with a smear of toothpaste. When your child can spit — between 2 and 5 years old — you can use a pea-sized amount of toothpaste to clean the teeth. Until your child can tie his shoes, he will need help with brushing his teeth. Even after that you will need to check for areas that may have been missed. Dr. Harvey can recommend methods to inspect your child’s mouth and motivate the young child toward good brushing habits.

Below are several helpful tips for brushing your child’s teeth properly:

  • Brush the inside and outside surfaces of each tooth, top and bottom.
  • Hold the brush flat on top of the teeth and brush the chewing surfaces.
  • Gently brush the tongue to remove debris.
  • Floss between teeth daily.
  • Create a tooth brushing routine and stick to the same routine each day.

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Dietary Recommendations

Just like the rest of your body, the teeth, bones and soft tissues of the mouth require a well-balanced diet. Everyone should eat a variety of foods from the five major food groups.

Most snacks that children eat can lead to cavities. The more frequently your child snacks, the greater the chances for a cavity forming. How long food stays in the mouth without being rinsed either by water or saliva is important. For example, hard candy stays in the mouth longer which may cause attacks on the tooth enamel. If your child must snack, choose nutritious foods such as vegetables, low fat yogurt or low fat cheese. Rinsing the mouth after snacks is also a good idea.

Below are healthy eating tips for you and your child:

  • Avoid sticky foods that don't rinse off of teeth easily.
  • Never put your child to bed with a bottle of formula, milk, juice or immediately after breastfeeding (teeth should be brushed, rinsed or wiped afterwards).
  • Limit snacking and juice intake. Pediatricians recommend no more than 4-6 ounces of juice daily.
  • Nutritional counseling is part of our first appointment at Toothworks. We will talk with you about foods and habits to promote healthy teeth.

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Infant Examinations

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends scheduling your child’s first visit to the dentist within 6 months of the first baby tooth — or by 12 months old. Awareness and prevention are the focus of this visit for your child, similar to a well-baby checkup at the pediatrician’s office.

Dr. Harvey and her team offer new parents the option of a knee-to-knee exam — where your baby gets their first checkup in the comfort of your lap! While your baby may cry during this experience, the exam is very quick and your baby’s open mouth provides the best view of the entire oral cavity. Within seconds of finishing, the tears will go away and your baby will be back in your arms. Our team’s goals are focused on your baby’s health and helping you to establish good habits early!

Benefits of the 12-month dental visit with Dr. Harvey:

  • One plus one equals Zero. One dental visit when there's one tooth can equal zero cavities.
  • Visiting Toothworks Pediatric Dentistry by the time the first baby tooth appears enables your child to begin a lifelong dental care program to minimize tooth decay and gum disease.
  • Pediatric dentists can detect early tooth decay, provide parents with information on proper oral and facial development, determine fluoride needs and more.
  • The 12-month dental visit can actually save money! A study in the journal Pediatrics showed that children who have their first dental visit before age one have 40% lower dental costs in their first five years than children who do not — due to the cost of dental and medical procedures that may result from poor oral health.

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To learn more about Grosse Pointe pediatric dentist Dawn Yuen Harvey D.D.S., M.S., any of our preventive pediatric dental services or to request an appointment, please contact us here or call our office directly at 313.343.8790.