It is highly recommended that children see a pediatric dentist around the age of twelve months. The reasoning behind this practice is to allow the child to feel comfortable around the sights, sounds, and smells of a dental office; in addition, this preliminary exam is used to spot any oral irregularities that might be present as well as provide an ideal educational moment for caregivers to learn the best ways to maintain their child’s oral health.
Children that visit the dentist for the first time because they are experiencing a problem are already reluctant because they are in discomfort. Preventive care trumps reactive response. So follow these tips to help your child to maintain optimum oral health:
As baby teeth start to emerge, wipe them gently with a damp cloth to remove debris around teeth and gums. As your child shows signs of independence, introduce them to cleaning their own teeth with a soft bristle toothbrush and age-appropriate toothpaste.
Do not put your baby down for a nap or at night with a baby bottle containing milk, formula, juice, or anything but water. Your child may fall to sleep with a sugary beverage surrounding their new little teeth which can lead to premature decay. And since the primary teeth pave the way for permanent teeth, keeping them healthy is important to your child’s oral health for their lifetime.
When those permanent teeth start to come in, a visit with the pediatric dentist for sealants is advised before teeth have a chance to incur decay. A sealant is painted on the chewing surfaces of teeth; it seeps into the small nooks of the dental enamel offering protection to the areas most vulnerable to getting cavities.
Educate your children about the potential results from eating too many sugary treats and consuming beverages loaded with sugar. Encourage your children to brush after partaking of meals and snacks; if brushing is not possible, chewing sugar free gum can promote saliva production to help promote a natural mouth wash.
If necessary, a reward for a successful dental outing is OK as long as it encourages something positive. A prized book or toy does not need to be extravagant.
If it’s time to schedule your child’s dental exam, we encourage you to contact our caring team at Richardson Dentistry today.