When Should I Take My Child to the Dentist?

Many parents question when they should be taking their child to the dentist and dentists and doctors have varying opinions on this.  Teeth should be looked at for health as soon as they poke through, but getting a child under three to sit in a chair for a thorough exam can be extremely difficult.

The appropriate dental care should start at home even before teeth erupt.  Teeth begin to form in a baby’s mouth in the second trimester of pregnancy, so they are there and they need care.  By the time your child is born they will have twenty primary teeth and some will even be fully developed within the jaw.  Before the teeth come in, parents can rub warm damp clothes over the gums to keep them clean according to KidsHealth.org.

Once a few teeth have come through you can begin brushing them gently with a finger brush and fluoride free tooth paste.  Very young children can have issues with decay from bottle use, pacifiers, and juice in sippy cups.  Pitted or discolored front teeth can be a sign of bottle mouth.  Severe cases may result in cavities at a very young age and this is no fun for anyone involved.

Talk to your Miami dentist about when you should bring your child in.  Pediatricians will typically look at the mouth at early appointments, but eventually the child should see the expert dentist.  It may depend on your child’s readiness, but be sure to bring any concerns you may have about your child’s oral health to your dentist’s attention and get any warning signs addressed as soon as possible to keep decay to a minimum.  Once your child has been to the dentist, they should continue to go twice a year for the rest of their lives.

Written by Mark Paulsort

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