Healthy smiles begin in infancy! The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that children first see the dentist at one year old or when the first tooth emerges. It’s important to see a dentist early in a child’s life because it allows the doctor to examine his/her mouth and discuss specific oral hygiene instructions for the child. Parents should begin brushing and flossing their children’s teeth when the first tooth emerges. When the child is old enough, parents should teach their children how to brush and floss properly. Setting a high standard of oral hygiene early in life will help children develop healthy oral hygiene habits for life!
Just like an adult, children should see the dentist a minimum of twice a year. The mouth is constantly changing and growing in childhood and along with this growth can come injuries and issues that, when addressed early, can be easily treated.
Pediatric dentistry focuses on preventive care. Emphasis is placed on home care, regular check-ups, and cleanings. There are many preventive measures available to keep children’s teeth healthy and clean, including sealants and mouth guards. Part of preventive dentistry also focuses on educating the parent about common dental issues kids may have such as bruxism, thumb sucking, and baby bottle tooth decay.