Happy family smiling and holding onto each other

Pediatric Dentistry in Hackensack, NJ

Trustworthy Care For the Entire Family

At State Street Smiles, we’re invested in your child’s present and future health as much as you are! We offer a variety of treatments and services to meet your child’s needs while making sure they feel as comfortable as possible. 

Whether it’s sedation options, special equipment, or our overall gentle touch, our compassionate team will do everything we can to help your child have a great dental experience. Learn about our comprehensive pediatric services and how you can enjoy the ease of having one dental home for your whole family.

Early Infant Treatment

Children’s primary (baby) teeth can erupt, or become visible along the gumline, at as young as six months old. That’s why it’s highly recommended to establish a “dental home” for your child by the time they turn one. At State Street Smiles, we’ll start seeing patients as early as one year old or as soon as their first tooth erupts. We understand that concerned parents have many questions about their child’s oral health. To help make it easier, we’ve created a special visit and orientation called “Toddler Time” to teach your child proper oral hygiene techniques to prevent cavities, introduce our youngest patients and their parents to our outstanding team, and answer any questions you may have. 

Starting your child’s dental experience early can help prevent dental problems before they happen. For example, babies can develop bottle-induced cavities which can be easily treated by one of our specially trained pediatric dentists.

smiling baby
man holding a smiling baby

Lip and Tongue Ties

Tongue and lip ties are common and happen when a membrane of skin is thick, short, or malformed. 

Tongue ties are caused when a flap of skin (frenum) is more attached to the tip of the tongue and the bottom of the mouth. This affects the mobility of the tongue and, depending on the severity, some people may not be able to extend their tongue past their own lips.

If you run your finger between your upper lip and your gums, you’ll find a flap of skin similar to what you felt under your tongue. When a newborn has a lip tie, their upper lip is attached too far down the gumline. This causes the lip to curl downwards instead of upwards and can have a significantly negative effect on healthy and productive nursing.

sad baby
Problems With Lip and Tongue Ties
Problems With Lip and Tongue Ties

Both tongue and lip ties can lead to your baby having a hard time latching on when breastfeeding. When an infant can’t latch on properly, they may not stimulate enough milk production, leading to poor feeding and insufficient weight gain. A poor or incomplete latch can also cause discomfort and soreness to the mother’s breasts. 

If left untreated, the discomfort for the mother can get so bad that she can no longer nurse. As they get older, children with lip or tongue ties can have:

  • Difficulty chewing solid foods
  • Reflux disorders
  • Speech difficulties
  • Increased risk for cavities due to the inability to swallow properly and pooled food
  • Orthodontic problems
Small infant with tongue lip tie
smiling baby
Lip and Tongue Tie Treatment
Lip and Tongue Tie Treatment

If your baby has a lip or tongue tie, Dr. Eddie can perform a procedure called a frenectomy to remove the extra flap of skin. Our Hackensack office proudly uses the Waterlase iPlus laser to ensure a more precise and comfortable procedure for your little one. 

During a frenectomy, Dr. Eddie will release the frenum with laser pulses without even touching the tissue, gently separating it from its attachment. The actual procedure takes 3-5 minutes, and full healing with new skin is evident within 10 days.

It’s likely your child will experience mild postoperative discomfort after a frenectomy. The surgical area will feel sore for about two to three days, but your baby will be able to nurse immediately after the procedure. We’ll provide you with personalized home-care instructions along with vitamin E capsules to aid the healing process.

man clapping for a smiling baby while she walks
Why Choose Us
Why Choose Us

Finding the right dentist in the Northern New Jersey area for your child’s lip or tongue tie procedure can be challenging— especially one that’s properly trained to use the Waterlase. It’s important to do your research and talk to friends, pediatricians, and lactation consultants. 

Consider your options and feel confident that when it comes to choosing Dr. Eddie and State Street Smiles, you’ve come to the right place. Dr. Eddie is a Laser Frenectomy specialist who can answer any questions you might have, and help your little ones latch and eat better. Once you meet our warm and friendly team, you’ll know you’ve found the right place!

Dental Visits & Cleanings

At State Street Smiles, we take pride in our high-quality professional cleanings and work hard to help your child feel comfortable and make the cleaning process easy. Dental cleanings should be performed every six months to prevent plaque buildup and tooth decay. This allows us to help maintain your child’s teeth and gums for a healthy, long-lasting smile.

Your child’s cleaning appointment will include additional preventive services such as an exam,  fluoride treatment, necessary x-rays, and an orthodontic evaluation. We’ll also teach your child how to maintain their oral health, including proper brushing and flossing habits.

Our Hackensack practice offers nutritional counseling as a part of our thorough exam process. Our staff can provide suggestions for snacking and other food habits to keep your child’s teeth as strong and healthy as possible.

child high-fiving a dentist
small child in a dentist chair practicing brushing

Cavity Risk Assessment 

Early childhood cavities, also known as baby bottle tooth decay, can destroy your child’s teeth without proper treatment. Fortunately, Dr. Eddie and our pediatric team can prevent this from happening and help keep your child’s teeth on track.

During your child’s dental visit, we’ll provide a thorough examination that includes a cavity risk assessment. This allows us to identify your child’s habits, along with their diet and health history to determine their risk for developing cavities. After completing the assessment, we’ll be able to provide your child with effective and personal recommendations to help prevent cavities.

smiling baby standing on it's head
Causes of Early Childhood Cavities
Causes of Early Childhood Cavities

There are several factors that can cause early childhood cavities. Letting your baby fall asleep with a bottle, whether with breast milk or formula, can cause decay as the liquids that contain sugar stay around the teeth. Childhood cavities can also be caused by prolonged nursing or allowing your infant to walk around carrying a bottle.

a child holing a sign with a sad face
Effects of Untreated Childhood Cavities
Effects of Untreated Childhood Cavities

If left untreated, early childhood cavities can result in serious consequences to your child’s oral health and overall wellness. Effects of these cavities may include:

  • Tooth loss
  • Ear and speech problems
  • Crooked permanent teeth
  • Severe pain
  • Poor self-image
  • Tooth decay
Smile with baby bottle cavities
smiling baby
Preventing Cavities
Preventing Cavities

Your child’s healthy teeth and brilliant smile depend on you! To prevent early childhood cavities, it’s important to get in the habit of putting your baby to bed without a bottle. This includes bottles filled with formula, milk, juice, sugar water, or soda pop. If your baby must have a bottle to go to sleep, fill it with water instead. Dr. Eddie recommends following these additional tips:

  • Don’t let your infant walk around with a bottle
  • Start teaching your infant to use a cup between 6-12 months
  • Trade your baby’s bottle for a training cup by age one
  • Check with your doctor or dentist to make sure your child is getting enough fluoride each day

Preventive Pediatric Treatments

Our preventive services are designed to keep your child free from tooth decay and prevent cavities. Proactively preventing dental issues can preserve the longevity of your child’s smile. While building a consistent at-home oral hygiene routine is important, scheduling biannual appointments at State Street Smiles can help provide your child with the comprehensive care they need to have a bright and healthy smile.

dentist showing a little girl how to brush teeth properly using a model set of teeth
Fluoride Treatment
Fluoride Treatment

Fluoride strengthens enamel and prevents decay. As part of your child’s preventive care, we provide fluoride treatment in the form of a highly concentrated gel. The solution is applied with a swab or brush or placed in a tray that’s held in the mouth for several minutes.

Getting the right amount of fluoride is important for the health of your child’s teeth. We’ll work with you to make the best decisions in regards to your child’s preventive care.

dentist inspecting a little boy's teeth
Dental Sealants
Dental Sealants

Even with good oral hygiene, some teeth have fine grooves or pits that accumulate plaque in narrow spaces that your toothbrush can’t reach. When plaque accumulates, it can lead to cavities and other types of tooth decay. 

Our Hackensack practice uses dental sealants as an effective treatment to prevent cavities on your child’s molars as soon as the teeth come in. To apply sealants, we brush a plastic material onto the tooth to fill in narrow grooves and prevent cavity-causing build-up. This sets your child on the right track for a future with lasting oral health.

Before and after of dental sealants

Restorative Pediatric Treatments

At State Street Smiles, we strive to make sure your child’s smile is not only healthy but also functional. 

If your child has been affected by tooth decay, restorative treatment may be needed to bring your child’s oral health back in good order. 

girl smiling while dentist holds dental tools near her face
Tooth-Colored Fillings
Tooth-Colored Fillings

The health of primary (baby) teeth is essential for healthy, long-lasting permanent teeth. That’s why it’s important to treat decay in them as well. Small cavities in baby teeth can be quickly restored using tooth-colored, composite filling material.

Depending on size and location, these fillings can often be performed quickly and efficiently without having to use a local anesthetic, making the experience painless and easy.

Before and after of a composite filling treatment
mother holding a child while a dentist looks at the child's teeth
Baby Tooth Crowns
Baby Tooth Crowns

If your child’s having problems with their primary teeth, a crown may be necessary to prevent further damage and decay. A dental crown, also called a cap, is used to cover a damaged tooth to restore its strength while enhancing its appearance, shape, and alignment.

Our crowns are pre-made and don’t require multiple visits, making them a cost-effective choice for children. At State Street Smiles, we offer white crowns for baby teeth in addition to the traditional stainless steel crowns.

Dentist showing a child their tooth in a hand mirror
Baby Tooth Root Canal
Baby Tooth Root Canal

Deep cavities can get close to or into the pulp (nerve) of a tooth. The pulpal tissue can become irritated and inflamed, causing severe toothaches. If the inflammation and infection continue without treatment, the tooth will likely eventually abscess and your child may need an extraction. 

To save the tooth, we can perform a pulpotomy, also known as a baby tooth root canal, to ensure your child doesn’t lose any vital teeth prematurely. During pulp therapy, the infected part of the nerve is removed and a sedative medication is placed inside the tooth to prevent sensitivity and promote healing. The tooth is then capped with a protective crown following the procedure.

dentist working on a child
Tooth Extractions
Tooth Extractions

The loss of a single tooth can have a major impact on your child’s overall health and appearance. We’ll use every possible measure to prevent tooth loss, but a tooth may need to be extracted if the following occurs:

  • Severe decay
  • Infection or abscess
  • Orthodontic correction
  • Malpositioned teeth
  • Fractured teeth or roots
  • Impacted teeth

During your child’s dental visit, we’ll carefully examine their teeth and take high-quality X-rays here at our Hackensack office. This will help us better understand the tooth’s shape, position, and surrounding bone to determine if extraction is necessary. Based on the degree of difficulty, you may be referred to an oral surgeon.

It’s likely your child will experience mild pain or discomfort following an extraction, but this should subside within a few days. To help relieve the pain, Dr. Eddie recommends taking an over-the-counter painkiller and applying an ice pack to the affected area to reduce swelling.

girl with missing tooth smiling

Additional Pediatric Care

Our goal at State Street Smiles is to provide your child with comprehensive dental care that prevents any future dental issues and sets your child up for a healthy future.

We strive to provide the best care possible for all our patients using efficient, innovation-led treatments. 

Check out our additional pediatric services below.

boy holding a mouth guard
Athletic Guards
Athletic Guards

Athletic guards, also called night or mouth guards, are used to protect the jaw, tongue, cheek lining, and teeth during physical activity and sports. Our athletic guards are custom-made from flexible plastic and molded to comfortably fit the shape of your teeth. They’re an important defense against concussions, absorbing the force of collisions to the head or chin.

If your child is active in athletics or experiencing any concerning issues with their mouth, teeth, or jaw, please let us know. We’ll take an impression of their teeth to create a custom-fit mouth guard for their specific needs.

a child with a anesthetic device being used
General Anesthesia
General Anesthesia

Your child’s safety, comfort, and health are our top priorities. In some cases, it might be necessary to administer anesthesia to ensure their treatment is thorough and comfortable. General anesthesia is only administered in Hackensack University Medical Center. 

This arrangement allows Dr. Eddie to focus strictly on your child’s dental care while a specially trained anesthesiologist focuses on their overall health and safety. We’ll work very closely with you on your child’s complex case to make things as safe and simple as possible.

laser dental tool being used on a child
Laser Dentistry
Laser Dentistry

At State Street Smiles we use cutting-edge technology with our laser dentistry, to make your child’s visits to our office comfortable and effective. Laser dentistry is used to treat a wide range of dental and cosmetic problems from cavities to gum disease. 

For children, lasers can even be used to perform a frenectomy that helps with nursing, speech, or alignment issues. They’re a safer, more comfortable alternative to the common handheld scalpel, drills, and other tools. Best of all, laser dentistry can reduce pain and minimize the use of local anesthetics.

Frequently Asked Questions

When is the best time to bring your child to the dentist?
Can my child return to school after their appointment?
Why are primary (baby) teeth so important?
What can baby tooth crowns be used for?
When is the best time to bring your child to the dentist?

We find that young or particularly anxious children often have a better experience at the dentist during the morning hours. At this time of day, children are well-rested, refreshed, and more cooperative. In the afternoon, they’re often tired and cranky, putting us and your child at a disadvantage from the start. 

We ask that you take this into consideration when scheduling appointments and try not to schedule their appointments during nap time. It’s especially important to schedule your child’s restorative procedures, like a filling or extraction, in the morning. A more involved procedure can be difficult for your child to endure if they’re exhausted from a long day of school and play.

Can my child return to school after their appointment?

In most cases, your child will be able to return to school or daycare after their appointment is completed. This will depend on the type of appointment, the amount of treatment completed, and your child’s ability to tolerate the procedure.

We understand that early appointments are often inconvenient for parents! Please understand that we make this recommendation with your child’s best interest in mind.

Why are primary (baby) teeth so important?

It’s very important to maintain the health of your child’s primary teeth. Neglected cavities can lead to problems that affect the development of permanent teeth. Primary teeth, or baby teeth, are important for:

  • Smiling, speaking, and self-confidence
  • Proper chewing and eating
  • Providing space for the permanent teeth and guiding them into the correct position
  • Permitting normal development of the jaw bones and muscles

While the front four teeth last until 6-7 years of age, the back teeth don’t fall out until age 10-13.

What can baby tooth crowns be used for?

Here at State Street Smiles, baby tooth crowns are commonly used to:

 

  • Replace a large filling when there is little tooth structure remaining
  • Protect a weak tooth from fracturing
  • Restore a fractured tooth
  • Cover a discolored or poorly shaped tooth
  • Cover a tooth that has had root canal treatment

Schedule Your Child’s Visit Today

Dr. Dina Jackson, Dr. Eddie Jackson, along with our outstanding team, are invested in your child’s oral health and overall well-being.

To get started, contact our Hackensack office at (201) 487-7030. We’ll do everything in our power to ensure your child has a fun, welcoming, and comfortable dental experience with us.

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