Starting a dental routine for your child at an early age is essential in creating life-long healthy habits. To help you get started, here are the answers to FAQs concerning children’s dental health and the role of pediatric dentists.
Why should we choose a pediatric dentist?
Dentists who specialize in kids dentistry only treat children and are equipped to treat their specific needs. Children require different treatment than adults.
At what age should my child have their first dental checkup?
When your child gets their first tooth, or by the time they turn one year old, they should be seen by a dentist. The dentist can teach you how to care for their teeth right from the start.
How frequently should we visit the dentist?
Most dentists suggest coming in every six months. This allows them to check for cavities and overall dental health.
How can we prevent tooth decay?
Regular dental check-ups, brushing and flossing, and healthy diet choices can help prevent tooth decay. Minimize the intake of sugary drinks and foods and ensure they are getting enough vitamins and calcium. It’s helpful if your water supply has fluoride, which helps strengthen teeth.
Can my child start using toothpaste?
Children can start using toothpaste containing fluoride at age one. Start with a rice-grain amount, and brush their teeth and gums for them. Children under age one can have their teeth cleaned with a fluoride-free training toothpaste and a soft toothbrush.
What kind of toothbrush should we use?
Children’s toothbrushes should have a small head and soft bristles. Most packages recommended ages to help you choose. It’s fun to pick a toothbrush with your child’s favorite character on it. This helps make brushing more exciting.
When should we start flossing?
Begin flossing your child’s teeth around age four or as soon as neighboring teeth are touching. Many kids can do it themselves at age eight using floss picks, but it should still be supervised.
How can I alleviate my child’s toothache?
Have your child rinse with warm saltwater. If there is visible facial swelling, use a cold compress. Children’s Tylenol or Ibuprofen can help treat the pain. Make a dental appointment as quickly as possible to examine the affected area.
When should we stop pacifier use and thumb sucking?
It is recommended to start halting pacifier use at six months old. Prolonged use is linked to a higher rate of ear infections. It is recommended to start halting a thumb sucking habit no later than age 3 to prevent long term effects to the adult teeth.
What are dental sealants?
Dental sealants are used to prevent food from causing decay in the crevasses of your child’s teeth. The application is quick and can protect your child’s teeth for many years.