Kids Dental Care Begins at an Early Age


Pediatric dental treatments

For any number of reasons, childhood dental care is important. Cavities and tooth decay can cause absences from school, that have a cumulative impact on school work. Tooth and gum disease is also linked other more serious illness in both children and adults. Dental care for children should begin at an early age. That’s why it’s important to choose the first dentist for children carefully, because it will shape their future dental history.

Why dental care for children matters
People often think that because milk teeth are not permanent, they don’t need as much care. However, dentists are now aware that milk teeth serve as placeholders for permanent teeth and any damage to them can create problems in the future. That’s why as soon as the first baby teeth appear at the age of about four months, parents should begin a routine of dental care.
This could begin with a gentle wipe of the teeth with a washcloth, and later a soft toothbrush. By the age of one, children are ready for their first visit to the dentist office. However, it is not recommended to use toothpaste containing flouride until children are at least two years old.

Neglecting children’s dental care has consequences
Neglecting childrens dental care can have consequences right away. Tooth decay is a far more common disease in children than asthma and diabetes. More than four kids out of ten have dental cavities by the time they are in kindergarten.
As many as 20% of all kids in the U.S. don’t receive any dental work or care at all. Poor oral health is linked to absences from school, leading to problems with academic work. According to the Center for Health and Health Care in Schools, dental related illness is responsible for the loss of 51 million school hours each year.

Choosing the first dentist for kids
Finding the right first dentist for your kids can be very important, because it will shape a lifetime of dental health. When you pick a dentist for kids, it should be someone who specializes in pediatric dental care. That’s because children’s teeth are very different from adults, and dentistry for kids is not just a scaled down version of general dentistry.
For instance, anywhere from 10 to 39% of children’s dental injuries are due to sports, according to the AAPD. The most common injuries are chipped and broken teeth. Treatments required can be quite different from adult dental care. The dentist?s approach and manner are important too. Like many adults, kids are afraid of a visit to the dentist. A first dentist for children should be patient with frightened and even crying children.

Dental care begins as early as six months. The early years are the foundation for good dental health throughout life. Choosing a first dentist for children can be a major decision, because pediatric dentistry is quite different from the kinds of care and treatment needed for adults.

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