As parents, we want to see our children grow into happy, healthy individuals. That means taking them to various appointments and teaching them skills that they’ll need to care for themselves later in life. Their oral health should be no different! Even if they haven’t grown in all their teeth yet, it’s important that they visit a dentist routinely for checkups. This ensures that any areas of concern can be addressed early on before they cause any long-term issues. Keep reading to learn more about how regular dental visits benefit your child!
How Do Dental Appointments Benefit My Child?
Pediatric dentists recommend that you bring your kid to their first appointment when their first tooth grows in, usually around the 1-year mark. After that, they should have a checkup every 6 months. This allows your child’s dentist to:
- Detect oral health issues early. A simple examination can spot signs of tooth decay and gum disease so that it can be treated right away.
- Alleviate any discomfort. Some issues, like a cavity or impacted tooth, can cause pain but very small children may not be able to communicate that there’s an issue. By addressing any problem areas as soon as they’re found, your child’s dentist can ensure they aren’t feeling any distress.
- Establish positive dental hygiene habits. The dentist can share tips with you and your child about how to best care for their pearly whites regardless of what condition they may be in. That means your little one will be prepared to take care of their teeth on their own once they’re grown.
What Can I Do To Encourage Healthy Habits?
As a parent, there is plenty you can do to give your child the best chance for a healthy mouth long-term such as:
- Brush and floss twice a day. You can demonstrate healthy habits by following this practice yourself while encouraging your kid to do the same. As soon as their first tooth appears, you’re welcome to begin gently brushing it with a soft-bristled toothbrush and water. Fluoride toothpaste is recommended after that as more teeth grow in.
- Limit sugar consumption. Many sugary foods and beverages are marketed towards children. Unfortunately, sugar contributes to tooth decay. By limiting their access to these foods, you help your child avoid potential cavities.
- Build a healthy diet. Incorporating foods that are high in calcium and vitamin D will keep both their bodies and teeth happy. Including a variety of fruits and vegetables gives your little one the nutrients they need to grow strong.
With so many benefits for your child’s long-term wellness, there’s plenty of motivation for you to schedule their next dental appointment. You’ll enjoy such peace of mind knowing that you’re doing all you can to keep them happy and healthy for life!
About the Author
Dr. Veronica Martinez, or “Dr. V” to her patients, earned her dental degree at the Marquette University School of Dentistry in Milwaukee. She then specialized in pediatric dentistry at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin. She uses her years of experience both as a dentist and a mother to provide a full range of dental services. Whatever your child’s oral health care needs, she can help! If you’d like to schedule an appointment for your little one, feel free to request one on the website or by calling (480) 282-6746.