As a parent, you might wonder why dental checkups are important since your young child will eventually lose their baby teeth. But tooth decay is bad for your child, even if the tooth with a cavity falls out on its own. Your child’s oral health affects their physical, mental, and emotional well-being.
Tooth decay is a bad environment for your child’s developing teeth. Primary teeth help your child’s speech develop properly and make it easier to chew their food to get the nutrients their growing body needs. Poor oral health can affect their digestive system, lead to heart disease, respiratory infection, and even dementia.
The Benefits of Early Dental Care
Bringing your child in for an early checkup helps them avoid unnecessary dental pain, which could lead to problems concentrating and potential medical problems down the road. Setting a good oral foundation for their health means teaching them the importance of caring for their teeth. Kids with healthy teeth also perform better in school and develop greater self-esteem!
It matters because tooth decay is the most shared chronic disease among children in the U.S. Even though it is also largely preventable simply by forming good oral habits and regular checkups early on. The longer you wait to bring your child in for their first dental appointment, the more potential problems may crop up, affecting their dental and general health.
According to the American Dental Association and the American Academy of Pediatrics, every child needs to see a dentist by their first birthday. Ideally, they would be seen when their first tooth makes its debut. It is considered a “well-baby visit,” so you can learn how to best care for your child’s teeth so their mouth can stay free from cavities.
How To Help Your Child Keep Their Teeth and Gums Healthy
- As soon as your baby’s first tooth arrives, begin good oral health habits. Use a clean, soft cloth to whip down their gums and teeth.
- When your child is old enough to hold a toothbrush, teach them how to clean all surfaces of their teeth. Brush for at least two minutes twice daily and use toothpaste. You will want to help them clean until they have the manual dexterity to brush their chompers themselves.
- When your child has teeth that are touching, you will want to floss between them as well as the gum line to remove trapped food particles and harmful dental plaque that can cause cavities and gingivitis.
- Teach your child to clean their teeth after consuming sweetened juices or candy and limit their intake of both.
- Encourage their water intake during the day to help neutralize the harmful acids that lead to cavities.
- Schedule regular dental visits with our pediatric dental team so that your child has the vital building blocks to good oral health!
Call To Schedule Their First Visit
Maintaining good oral hygiene care (combined with regular dental visits) helps your child prevent dental diseases like cavities and gum disease. Bringing your child in early and regularly allows us to look for any developing problems when they are easiest to treat. Should our pediatric dentist find a cavity, we can fix it and provide preventable treatments like dental sealants. Seeing the dentist at an early age teaches your youngster that their smile is important and helps them feel comfortable around oral health providers throughout their life. Call our team to schedule your child’s dental visit soon!