Watching your child’s teeth come in can be an exciting time for parents. But, keeping all those teeth healthy can be more challenging than enjoyable. For knowing when to bring your youngster into the dentist and tips on how to keep your child’s teeth clean, read on:
When Should My Child First See a Dentist?
A child should first see a dentist when they have teeth, or by the age of one. When you do decide to take your child to a dentist, opt for a pediatric dentist or a dentist that also specializes in family care.
After your child’s first dental appointment, you should follow up care with regular dentists appointments. If you notice any of the following symptoms or problems with your child’s teeth, you should schedule a dentist appointment:
- Pocked, pitted or discolored teeth;
- Complaints from your child about tooth pain;
- Discolored or swollen gums;
- White spots on teeth;
- Unusually persistent bad breath;
- Sensitivity to touch or temperature; or
- If your child hasn’t been brushing regularly and/or frequently consumes sugary foods or beverages.
As your child ages, it’s likely that your dentist will also suggest that your child sees an orthodontist for further oral care and assessment.
How Do I Prevent My Child From Getting Cavities?
Oral health is all about prevention. Therefore, keeping your child’s mouth healthy can be as simple as scheduling regular dentist checkups, brushing three times a day, and flossing.
For infants or toddlers who are too young to use toothpaste, you should wipe down the gums and teeth of your child with a wet cloth after feeding. Tooth decay and rot can be caused from the milk that your child drinks. If your child has teeth, choosing a toothpaste with fluoride and that is kid-friendly is an important part of establishing a healthy brushing routine.
You can also ask your dentist about other prevention techniques, such as applying a sealant or resin to teeth to help prevent against cavities, particularly in molars.
As a parent, it is also your responsibility to monitor the consumption of foods and drinks that are high in sugar. Sugar is the main culprit of tooth decay. Preventing tooth decay by watching the levels of sugar that your child eats can help save painful, expensive, and inconvenient oral care expenditures in the future.
How Do I Promote Oral Hygiene at Home?
Going to the dentist can often by a scary experience for children, especially when they’re very young. Make dentist visits seem more exciting by following up the dentist’s office with a special treat, like a trip to a restaurant or toy store. To promote healthy habits while at home and to make brushing more fun, let your child pick out their own toothbrush and have rewards or incentives that are associated with regular brushing.
Remember, the earlier you start enforcing good habits and the earlier you introduce dental care into your child’s life, the easier it will be for your child to implement and continue habits on their own. If your child is approaching the age of one and hasn’t yet seen a dentist, or if they are experiencing any of the oral complications listed above, schedule an appointment immediately.
Dental care and personal oral health and hygiene are extremely important throughout every stage of life. The way you care for and treat your teeth and gums will have an impact on your life now and into the future. Ideally, children are taught from infancy to properly care for their teeth. It is best to begin training and educating early in life. However, there is still no time like the present to grab hold of your oral hygiene and start making a difference on your quality of life.
Healthy Teeth and Gums Equals a Lifetime of Smiles
It is important to establish proper oral hygiene habits as early in life as possible. Healthy oral hygiene habits include:
- Brushing your teeth properly at least two times a day
- Flossing your teeth at least 1 time per day
- Visiting the dentist regularly for check-ups and cleanings
- Eating a well-balanced diet that is low in sugar
Every bit as important as beginning proper oral hygiene is maintaining the ritual of caring for your teeth and gums throughout your lifetime. Here is a timeline progression for how proper oral hygiene develops from infancy to adulthood.
Infancy to Two Years Old
Most infants begin teething by 6 months of age. If you have little children, you know that teething is not often a pleasurable experience. Signs of teething include: gnawing, drooling, bighting, sucking, and even light fever. Usually, the first teeth to appear are the two bottom middle teeth with the top four middle teeth coming in soon after.
It is recommended that your infant’s first trip to the dentist come as early as the first tooth appearing but no later than their first birthday. There are dentists, who specialize in pediatric dentistry. It is likely your child’s pediatrician will refer you to a pediatric dentist to handle your infant’s oral hygiene needs.
1 to 3 Years Old
Children should begin brushing their teeth (most likely with your help) as early as their first tooth. Use a toothbrush designed for children in their age group. Depending on the fluoride levels in your water supply, using toothpaste is not critical until about age 3. Ask your dentist, when your child should begin using toothpaste in your local area.
Flossing may begin as early as your child has 2 or more teeth that touch each other. Normally, by the time a child is 3 years old, they have a full set of 20 “baby teeth”. By 3 years old, your child should be brushing two times per day and flossing 1 time per day.
4 to 10 Years Old
Visits from the tooth fairy will signify that your child is losing his or her baby teeth. It is common for children to begin losing their baby teeth around the age of 5 or 6. The baby teeth are soon replaced by adult teeth (called permanent teeth). It is still important that your child brush and floss regularly throughout the process of losing their baby teeth and gaining their permanent teeth. Teeth and gums need to remain healthy. Do not forget to include regular visits to the pediatric dentist for check-ups as well.
10 to 16 Years Old
Between 10 and 12 years old children typically will lose their molars and grow in their permanent ones. Age 13 is typically considered the age by which a child will have all of his or her permanent teeth. The majority of people do not have perfectly straight teeth or bite lines. Most children in their pre-teen or teenage years will require orthodontic corrections to their teeth and/or jaw. Braces are used to straighten teeth and correct over or under bites.
17 to 21 Years Old
Some people will grow in wisdom teeth (or third molars) in their later teen years and early twenties. Typically, people do not have enough room in their mouth for a third set of molars. It is common for people to have their wisdom teeth removed to avoid complications in the future. Consult with your dentist to know, if you need your (or your child’s) wisdom teeth removed.
Teeth and gums care and overall oral hygiene is important for a healthy life and great smile. Start young with proper brushing and flossing practices. Maintain those proper oral health habits throughout your life. Visit the dentist regularly. This is the recipe for a lifetime of oral health.
Finding a good dentist that puts his patients at ease, is quite difficult. People have often been scared of visiting dentists, because of the sensitive nature of treatment they engage in. There are several well established and talented dentists in the Holladay area in Utah. Dentists are often referred to by friends and family and Holladay offers severl choices for these.
What Makes a Good Dentist?
Good dentists take a personal interest in patients. They offer long-term health-friendly advice to patients, instead of prescribing pain-relief medication that is of no use to the patients. They will not prescribe sensitive check-ups or difficult medication unless it is required for the patient. They want patients to come back to them, but not because of problems they have helped cause.
Dentists also conduct a thorough dental examination of teeth, gums, tongue, lips, inside of the cheek, palate and jaw. They check for abnormal lymph nodes and enlargement of thyroid gland. It helps prevent dangerous cancerous scenarios. By early detection, they can further guide patients to appropriate oncologists and doctors.
What Do Good Dentists Do?
Dentists conduct routine examinations like tooth cleaning, bite evaluation, fluroide treatment to ensure the health of their patients’ teeth. These can help avoid more costly treatments in the future. The frequency of such maintenance is usually based on the frequency of cavity formation or mouth ulcers or condition of gums. They also keep track of the patients’ check-ups to avoid doing too much of a good thing and cost the patient unnecessary money.
Holladay dentists perform great quality dental work which avoids decay for a several years, through wear and tear. The price of dental work is not the best way to judge its quality and Holladay dentists offer quality above quantity. This repair and prevention procedure by dentists are cost-effective and not assembly line. They vary for each patient.
How to Find a Good Dentist
Finding a good dentist can best be achieved through recommendation by family and friends. Another determining factor is the proximity of the dentist to the patient. Find a dentist close to your place in Holladay. Look for pleasant staff at the dentists, because often they assist in routine procedures and help book appointments. Make sure that your insurance supports dental visits and let the dentist know of what insurance plan you are on, so that he can make adjustments along those lines. Ask for fees, payment plans in advance, so that you can make a wise decision about the dentist.
Dentists are hard to find if the appropriate criteria are not kept in mind, but with the help of Village-Dental and the experts present in Holladay, it should not be an impossible goal.