Well, I would say your nephew’s first visit, or niece, cousin or little loved one…Tooth decay can happen as soon as a child’s first tooth erupts.
A lot of parents frequently asked me if they should worry about it…They usually say “it will get replaced by the permanent teeth anyway”. The problem is that cavities in primary teeth could mean a higher risk of decay in future permanent teeth… I’ve treated severe decay, we call it baby bottle tooth decay and this can really harm the child’s overall health.
What causes tooth decay on children?
Bacteria in the mouth change the sugar foods and drinks into acid. And this goes to adults as well… each time you eat or drink, this acid can attack the teeth… after many occasions of this behavior tooth decay can develop thus leading to cavities.
That being said, children are at higher risk for decay if their teeth are exposed to sugar often or for long periods of time. Babies should not be put to bed with a bottle of milk, or juice of any kind… in my office I recommend just water… they will sleep very cozy. As a general rule, children should not be allowed to constantly sip on sugary drinks or snack on sugary foods all the time.
[Note] Baby teeth, also called primary teeth, are just as important as permanent (adult) teeth. Strong, healthy primary teeth can help your child chew and speak. They also hold space in the jaws for permanent teeth that are growing under the gums. [/Note]
I recommend to meet your Dentist as early as possible.
Protect your little loved one teeth by starting dental checkups early. The first dental visit should occur within six months after the baby’s first tooth appears, but no later than the child’s first birthday. It is best to meet the dentist when your child is having no dental problems… More often than not, if you wait until an emergency tooth-ache happens it may be uncomfortable and many times traumatic or for the child… so do your child a big favor, he/she will thank you for the white healthy teeth when they are adults.
At Pinnacle Peak Dental Center, we recommend to schedule a child’s dental visit early.
Your Dentist can show you how to clean your little loved one’s teeth, and talk about certain diets and fluoride treatment and some oral care products… or maybe just answer that question about baby’s teeth.
Having a well-baby checkup at this age also connects your child to a dental home… and that let me tell you is one of the best favors you can do to a child. A person who is not anxious about going to the dentist is because he/she was introduced to a Dentist early in life… and not because it was an emergency toothache.
So, here are the tips for a successful Dental visit:
- Schedule your child’s first visit between the arrival of the first tooth and his first birthday
- If possible, schedule a morning appointment when children tend to be rested and cooperative
- Stay positive and encouraging! The Dentist will help to keep your child’s teeth healthy keep to yourself any anxiety that you might feel about dental visits… you don’t want to pass this feelings.
- Never bribe your child to go to the dentist or use the visit as a punishment or threat… this may develop psychological unwanted effects on your child.
Finally, try to make your child’s dental visit an enjoyable outing… Teaching your child good oral hygiene habits early can lead to a lifetime of good dental health.
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