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Pediatric Dentistry: FAQ

Starting good oral health habits when your child is young is important to protecting their baby teeth and helping maintain lifelong good oral health. The best step you can take to help your child develop and maintain healthy teeth and meet their unique oral health needs is to be informed about pediatric dentistry dumfries va. Here are some frequently asked questions about pediatric dentistry to get you started:

When should I take my child to the dentist for their first check up?

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) suggests all children should see the dentist within six months after their first tooth comes in. The first tooth usually comes in before the child reaches their first birthday. After your child’s first tooth comes in, the sooner they see the dentist the better. You will be on top of helping your child develop their oral hygiene habits and your child will be less likely to be afraid of visits to the dentist.

What should I use to clean my child’s teeth?

To keep your child’s teeth clean you should brush daily with a soft-bristled toothbrush with a small head. There are toothbrushes specifically designed for small children. Just like for your teeth, a soft-bristled toothbrush will remove plaque from their teeth to prevent tooth decay. Teeth should be brushed at least once daily at bedtime. It is important to know that baby teeth are softer than adult teeth and may be more prone to tooth decay. To avoid dental issues early in life, it is important to help your child develop good oral health habits at a young age.

Are baby teeth important?

Baby teeth serve many important purposes in your child’s mouth. These first teeth help children learn to chew food, speak properly, and maintain the spacing and structure of their mouth as they grow.

How often does my child need to see the dentist?

Just like the recommendations for adults, it is recommended that children have a dental check-up every six months to prevent cavities and tooth decay. While young children will not have all of their teeth, baby teeth are more prone to decay than adult teeth and need professional attention. Further, it is important to help your child develop good oral health habits, including seeing a dentist regularly.

Should I take my child to see a pediatric dentist?

It is important to have a good dentist for your child’s dental needs. A pediatric dentist has completed additional training and coursework, beyond dental school, to develop expertise in providing specialized dental care to children. This additional 2-3 years of training is focused on techniques to work with children as patients and to perform dental treatments on young patients. There are many general dentists in family dentistry practices, who are not certified pediatric dentists, who have experience in providing care to young patients. If you currently visit a family dentistry practice, you should have a conversation with your dentist to see if there are pediatric dentists or general dentists experienced in pediatric populations they recommend in the practice.

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