Taking care of your child's dental health is important. Dental Problems can affect your child's overall health and quality of life.
Kids Dental Care
The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that children visit the dentist as soon as their first tooth comes in or by their first birthday. The earlier you bring your child to the dental office for the first time, the more comfortable they will be in the chair for their regular check-ups and cleanings later in life. These appointments are extremely important for children's teeth because they help them get into a good oral health routine early on. This way, they can prevent tooth decay and other common oral problems later on in life. By bringing your child in for regular check-ups every six months, we can monitor their smile to make sure that their teeth are growing healthily and there are no problems to be concerned about.
If your child has a fear of the dentist's office, don't worry! We strive to make all of the patients feel comfortable in our practice so that they don't need to worry about going to the dentist. If your child is scared, let us know ahead of time so we can do everything we can to make you both feel as comfortable as possible. This can be accomplished by talking through the experience before we even step into the office so that you and your child know what to expect on that first visit.
What To Expect From Your Child's First Dental Visit?
At the first visit, the dentist will screen for any possible issues like cavities or misalignment of the teeth. If the screening determines the need for restorative treatment, the dentist may recommend a comprehensive exam. The comprehensive exam includes an analysis of the patient's teeth, gums, bite alignment, and more. The doctor may also take X-rays to determine the health of the teeth and underlying bone structure.
After the examination is complete, the doctor will discuss any findings during the consultation, which includes an explanation of the treatment plan. This may include a recommendation for a hygiene cleaning and other preventative measures such as fluoride treatments for kids. If a child may need orthodontic work to align the teeth, treatment may be recommended at this time as well. In some cases, a custom-fitted mouth guard may also be needed to protect the teeth while orthodontics are actively correcting malocclusions.
Following the exam, the child may be scheduled for a follow-up appointment in six months to monitor the growth progress of the child's teeth as well as ensure that there are no new issues developing.
At-Home Dental Care For Your Kids
Many parents feel anxious about brushing their children's teeth, especially the ones in the back. This concern is common yet unnecessary. Here are a few tips to get you started.
- Start early. As soon as your child's first tooth appears, it's time to start the oral hygiene routine. Consider using an infant toothbrush that is soft and gentle on tender gums. Once your child is old enough, you can use a soft-bristled brush and start introducing toothpaste around age two. Always use a mild fluoride-based toothpaste to prevent tooth decay.
- Make it fun. Children love games and activities, so consider making the process more fun. You can even make it into a game and reward the child for a job well done. Use a timer or a song to make it even more engaging.
- Make flossing part of theplan. Many people overlook flossing because they find it too hard to do. Ifthat'sthe case, try using flavored floss to help ease the process and make kids like it more. The younger you start this habit, the easier it is to follow and maintain.
- Stay positive! Remember, it's never too late to start a good oral health routine for your children. Be encouraging and supportive throughout the process, and they will be more likely to continue these practices throughout their lives.
To have a consultation with our dentist, Dr. Shirley Zao, please schedule an online appointment or call us at (925) 847-8790, and we will be happy to help.