What Age Do Children Typically Start Going to the Dentist?
If you are wondering at what age your children should start going to the dentist, the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that you take your kiddo to his or her first dental visit when the first tooth appears or no later than their first birthday. Beginning trips to the dentist at a young age ensures proper oral health and helps prevent future problems!
Why Should Children Start Going to the Dentist?
It’s never too late to visit the dentist for the first checkup. Around 28 percent of preschoolers have cavities, and pediatric dental disease is the number one chronic childhood disease. To help with nutrition, fight bacterial infections, and prevent emergency surgery, a simple trip to the dentist can help your child keep those pearly whites healthy for years to come.
Cavities are painful even as an adult, so imagine how much they can hurt a toddler. Because cavities are preventable, it’s important to begin proper oral hygiene habits as early as possible. If disease and risk factors are identified early, dentists can help parents prevent cavities in their children.
A cavity can form as soon as a tooth appears. Baby teeth are softer than permanent teeth, leaving them more vulnerable for bacteria to invade and cause a cavity. Once one tooth has a cavity, the other teeth nearby can more easily get cavities themselves. That’s why it’s important to start visiting the dentist as soon as that first tooth peaks out from behind those gums!
Encouraging Proper Oral Health
Even though baby teeth fall out, it’s still important to keep them healthy. Baby teeth hold a space and provide a pathway for adult teeth to grow in correctly. They also help encourage healthy chewing and nutrition and allow proper speech to develop.
While babies don’t need to use toothbrushes and toothpaste designed for adults, you can use a damp cloth to sweep over their gums and teeth after they eat to clean their mouths. Help toddlers and older children brush their teeth and take them to the dentist every six months for a checkup.
Kool Smiles: A Fun Place for Your Child’s First Visit to the Dentist
Going to the dentist for the first time is a fun and easy experience at Kool Smiles! We welcome new patients from babies as young as one year old to teenagers. You can expect quality care and great customer service with affordable options. We have waiting rooms that are family-friendly and fun, designed to keep children busy and calm their fears about seeing the dentist. And to calm your fears about cost, we accept most types of insurance including Medicaid, state health insurance plans, military plans, and more.
To schedule your child’s first dental visit, find a Kool Smiles location near you or call today!
American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry: http://www.aapd.org/resources/frequently_asked_questions/#36
Boston Children’s Hospital: http://www.childrenshospital.org/centers-and-services/departments-and-divisions/department-of-dentistry/overview
National Children’s Oral Health Foundation: http://www.ncohf.org/resources/tooth-decay-facts