WHEN SHOULD I TAKE MY CHILD TO THE DENTIST FOR THE FIRST CHECK UP?
The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that parents bring their child to the dentist within 6 months of getting his or her first tooth or at 1 year of age. This is a great opportunity for your child to get familiar with the dentist’s office as a safe and fun place! We also use this time to provide helpful hints for keeping your child’s smile healthy and beautiful.
WHY ARE BABY TEETH IMPORTANT?
Primary, or “baby,” teeth are important for many reasons. Not only do they help children develop speech and chewing, they also aid in forming a path that permanent teeth follow when they are ready to erupt. Also, one of the best predictors of future oral health is past cavity experience. This means that keeping those baby teeth healthy establishes a strong foundation for the future!
WHAT SHOULD I USE TO CLEAN MY BABY’S TEETH?
It is important to establish healthy habits early. Gently cleaning your child’s teeth as soon as they start to erupt is a great way to begin to create healthy habits. This can be done with a washcloth, cotton gauze, or an infant/toddler toothbrush.
ARE THUMBSUCKING AND PACIFIER HABITS HARMFUL FOR A CHILD’S TEETH?
Thumb and pacifier habits are appropriate for the infant and toddler stages. If these habits persist beyond this stage it can create changes to the teeth and palate. Talk with your dentist about strategies to transition away from these habits.
HOW DO I KNOW IF MY CHILD IS GETTING ENOUGH FLUORIDE?
Fluoride prescriptions are given based on a child’s cavity risk, geographic location, nutrition, and habits. We understand that fluoride is not for every family. Ask your dentist if a supplement is indicated and we can discuss the pros and cons.
HOW DO DENTAL SEALANTS WORK?
Sealants work by filling in the crevasses on the chewing surfaces of the teeth. This shuts out food particles that could get caught in the teeth, causing cavities. The application is fast and comfortable and can effectively protect teeth for many years.
And of course, please give us a call at (503) 912-6255 and we’ll help answer any other questions and schedule an appointment with Sandy Pediatric Dentistry for your child.