When Should Your Children Visit the Dentist?
We all understand that children’s dental health is important, but knowing exactly how to care for their teeth can be tricky. When should they have their first trip to the dentist? Do they need to floss as well as brush? How do you know if they might need braces? As a caring parent, you’ll want to help your children to prevent cavities and to have the best possible oral health both now and in the future. That’s why visiting a dentist for kids is fundamental.
Your Child’s First Dental Appointment
All children should have their first dental appointment just before their third birthday. While there is likely to be nothing wrong, this appointment serves several purposes. Firstly, you can ensure that your child is used to going to the dentist and has less fear about visits as they get older. Next, your dentist can talk you through proper brushing and flossing techniques. Also, your dentist can complete a modified version of a full examination, making it as fun as possible and taking extra care of your child at all times. By doing this, if there are any issues, such as an increased risk of cavities, your dentist can help to put preventive measures in place sooner rather than later.
What Dental problems Can Occur
Childhood is a time filled with exploration and adventure, not to mention growth. While all that fun doesn’t directly lead to dental problems, they do occur from time to time. Here are a few of the most common issues to look out for:
- Tooth decay – this is one of the most common health problems in children and plaque can build up as soon as baby teeth start to appear. Without proper brushing and oral hygiene, cavities can easily start to occur.
- Misaligned teeth – misaligned teeth are extremely common in children as baby teeth fall out and adult teeth take their place. It can be inherited genetically or caused by things like thumb sucking.
- Teeth Sensitivity – children who consume lots of sugary food and drink can wear down the enamel on their teeth and make them more sensitive to temperatures as well as more likely to decay.
- Injury and Accidents – kids like to run around and get involved in all sorts of games and sports, which puts their teeth at increased risk of accidental damage. Chipped, broken or loosened teeth are common results.
How to Care For Your Children’s Teeth
How you care for your children’s teeth when they are young can make a huge difference for the rest of their lives. To give them the best possible start, you’ll want to:
- Create good oral habits – teach your kids to brush their teeth at least twice a day and to floss regularly. When they are little, you’ll need to help them with this to ensure they’re doing it properly. Try to make oral hygiene fun by letting them choose their own toothbrush, watching videos while they brush or setting up a rewards chart.
- Get enough fluoride – regular use of fluoride toughens enamel and makes it harder for acid to penetrate. This is why fluoride is added to the water supply in Canberra. However, you should also check that you’re using the right kids’ toothpaste, which should also contain fluoride.
- Limit sugary foods – diet is fundamental when it comes to your child’s oral health. While they’ll, of course, want to indulge in some sugary treats from time to time, make sure they don’t overdo it. Sugary, sticky foods can erode enamel and lead to cavities. Limit the treats and when they do have them, get them to rinse their mouth with water or brush their teeth after.
The Importance of Ongoing Dental Appointments
When it comes to our children’s teeth, preventative care is fundamental. That means that you need to teach your children to look after their teeth, but also to visit your Woden dentist regularly. After the first appointment, you should ideally schedule visits every six months. By visiting regularly, you can ensure that everything stays on track and that you nip any problems in the bud before they have a chance to progress. Get a plan in place now and you’ll set your kids up for healthy teeth and gums for life.