As a parent, you want your child’s first dental visit to be a positive experience. Understandably, they may feel uneasy about the unknown, even if they’re not afraid of the dentist. We want to create a comfortable environment where we use straightforward language to explain every treatment. Knowing more about the first visit can help you feel more confident, so we’re here to provide you with all the information you need.
The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends…
Children should visit the dentist by their first birthday. It is crucial to provide proper dental care and establish good oral hygiene habits when their first teeth emerge, usually around six to twelve months.
To make learning about teeth fun…
When New Teeth Arrive
When your child’s new teeth arrive, their first primary/baby teeth will begin to erupt between six and twelve months of age and continue until about age three. During this time, your child’s gums may feel tender, and you can soothe them by gently rubbing a clean finger or a cool, wet cloth on the gums. Teething rings can also help. By the end of teething, your child will have 20 primary teeth.
Primary teeth are shed at various times during childhood, and permanent teeth start erupting around age six, continuing until age 21. Adults typically have 28 permanent teeth (32, including wisdom teeth).
Adopting Healthy Oral Hygiene Habits
To promote healthy oral hygiene habits, examine your child’s teeth every two weeks for signs of decay, and encourage brushing after meals or snacks. Brushing four times daily is recommended: after breakfast, lunch, dinner, and bedtime. When a baby’s first tooth emerges, it is crucial for parents to use a soft toothbrush and a small amount of toothpaste to brush it. It’s also recommended to discuss with a dentist when to introduce flossing. If there are any signs of decay, it’s best to contact the dentist immediately.
Preventing Tooth Decay with Regular Checkups
Regular dental checkups every six months are essential to prevent tooth decay. Children are particularly susceptible to decay due to inconsistent oral hygiene habits. These checkups include dental cleanings, fluoride treatments twice a year, and applying tooth sealants to protect hard-to-reach areas of their teeth. Sealants are monitored during regular checkups and last for several years.