January 11, 2022
When Should I Start Taking My Child to the Dentist?
As a parent to a little one, you’ll get to enjoy so many exciting milestones, including the first word, the first step, and even the first dental visit. At Jet Set Smiles Pediatric Dentistry, we are committed to providing our young patients with outstanding preventive services to set the stage for a lifetime of healthy smiles.
According to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD), you should schedule your little one’s first visit to the dentist within six months of the arrival of the first baby tooth and no later than the first birthday. Even though that may seem early, dental care right from the start will ensure those pearly whites stay free of decay and that their development is on track.
Even though tooth decay is preventable, it continues to be today’s most common childhood disease. Unfortunately, many children see the dentist for the first time with toothaches resulting from tooth decay and cavities.
Maintaining healthy baby teeth has long-term effects on your child’s oral health and development. Those tiny chompers help with speech development and proper chewing, ensuring adequate nutrition. Moreover, they act as placeholders to ensure the permanent teeth have the space needed to erupt in the correct alignment.
If a tooth is lost prematurely, the surrounding teeth may shift out of alignment, resulting in crooked teeth and problems with the bite, requiring orthodontic treatments down the road. Early dental care, starting with a child’s first dental visits, will help your child enjoy healthy smiles for a lifetime!
Visiting the dentist may be intimidating to a child. Talk to your little one about the dentist in a positive manner and read a fun book or two about dentists, even if your child isn’t verbal yet. Most importantly, stay calm and upbeat because your child will pick up on your demeanor and any unspoken fear of anxiety.
First dental visits are typically quick and straightforward. After greeting you, Dr. Patel will ask you about your child’s history and if you have any concerns. He will perform a comprehensive dental exam and evaluate every aspect of your child’s oral health. He may recommend taking digital x-rays, if necessary, to get a closer look at any potential concerns.
The visit will include a professional dental cleaning to ensure those tiny baby teeth stay clean and healthy. We may recommend a fluoride treatment, if indicated, to strengthen your child’s tooth enamel and make it more resistant to decay and cavities.
We will talk to you about proper oral hygiene practices, what to expect with teething, and when to schedule your child’s next appointment. Just like adults, most kids require twice-a-year dental exams and cleanings. Our goal is to prevent the onset or progression of dental problems to ensure your little one maintains a happy and healthy smile for a lifetime.
At Jet Set Smiles Pediatric Dentistry, we never spare any effort to make our young patients feel right at home. We always use age-appropriate kid-friendly language and try to make the entire time at our office as positive and comfortable as possible. We value our young patients and treat every child in our care the same way we treat our own children! We invite you to call us and schedule your child’s first dental visit today!