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Proper dental care is just as important for children as it is for adults. This includes taking them for regular dental check-ups. You probably can’t remember the first time that you went to the dentist, so how do you know when you should start taking your children?
Both the American Dental Association (ADA) and the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommend that a child’s first dental visit takes place before their first birthday, and ideally when their first tooth comes through The exact age at which this could happen can vary though. Like every other developmental milestone, baby teeth will appear in their own good time. Most babies start the teething process at around 6 months old, but some babies will not get a tooth through until they are more than a year old, while in rare cases, babies are even born with their first tooth.
Unsurprisingly, your child’s first dental visit won’t involve much more than a chat with your pediatric dentist and them taking a quick look at your babies’ tooth to make sure that it looks healthy. However, as your child grows, they will start to be able to sit in the chair and have their teeth examined more closely. Taking your child for dental visits early on is important for normalizing the experience and reassuring them that there is nothing to be frightened of.
Many people think that children don’t need to see a dentist when they are very young. However, it is just as important for infants to attend regular appointments with their dentist as it is for adults. There are a number of important reasons why. These include:
Your pediatric dentist can start your child’s dental record from birth, creating an accurate and comprehensive history that can be referred to in the future.
You are never too young to develop healthy tooth habits, and your pediatric dentist can help you understand the best way to support your child’s oral health.
Your pediatric dentist will be able to give you specific advice relating to childhood habits that can potentially have consequences for your child’s oral health, such as avoiding prolonged pacifier use, thumb-sucking, and more.
Your pediatric dentist can carefully monitor the development of your babies’ teeth, spotting any issues early so that they can be treated successfully.
Exposure to the dentist from an early age familiarizes your child with the sights, sounds, and smells of the environment, helping to avoid dental phobia in the future.
Your pediatric dentist will be able to refer your child to an orthodontic at the appropriate time. The American Association of Orthodontists recommends that all children have an orthodontic evaluation no later than 7 years old. This is because a large percentage of children go on to need braces or another orthodontic treatment in their teenage years.
After your child’s first visit to the dentist, you should schedule subsequent appointments at the frequency recommended. This is usually every 6-months but maybe more often if your dentist would like to monitor your child’s dental health or tooth development more closely. Always adhere to the guidance given by your dental professional.
For more on when children should go to the dentist, visit Bronxville Family Dental in Bronxville, New York. Call 914-935-7600 to schedule an appointment today.