Three Things Parents Should Consider Regarding Their Children’s Dental Care

Dental pediatrician

It can be extremely nerve-wracking to take your child to the dentist for the first time. Many of us are scared of the dentist, even into adulthood. Often, this is because we weren’t properly acclimated to the dentist as children, and got to the point where we dreaded the dentist. A fear of the dentist is natural the first time around, just as the fear of any doctor’s visit is natural for most kids. But the sooner a child starts regularly seeing a dentist, the sooner they’ll get over their fear of the dentist. Going to the dentist isn’t just about caring for a child’s teeth — it’s about teaching them about their teeth, and giving them the skills they need to practice proper dental care as they grow up. Therefore, it’s important that parents prioritize pediatric dental care just as they prioritize other aspects of pediatric care. With that being said, lots of parents know far less about how to navigate pediatric dentistry and pediatric orthodontics than they do about other aspects of their child’s health. The more you know about your child’s dental needs, the better you’ll be able to take care of them. Therefore, we’re going to count some of the top dental issues that parents need to be aware of.

1. Cavities

Cavities almost seem like a cliche at this point, but they remain a major issue for young children in American — in fact, 40% of children have cavities before they start kindergarten. This is unacceptable, but it’s easy to understand why it happens. Many parents unknowingly start caring for their child’s teeth late. In fact, you should begin caring for your child’s teeth as soon as they appear, at about four months of age. You can start with a washcloth before graduating to a small toothbrush, and for that matter start taking your child to see the dentist at the age of one. Lots of parents don’t realize that their child can start developing cavities at such a young age. Nor do they realize that dental pain can cause their child to miss out on school and social activities — as well as being heartbreaking for a parent to witness. Children who practice good dental care from an early age are not only far less likely to experience cavities — they’re also less likely to deal with the complications that come from developing cavities young.

2. Pediatric Orthodontics

Orthodontics are perhaps a bit more involved and invasive than other pediatric dental services, which is why parents are often hesitant to take their child to an orthodontist. Some parents get concerned, for example, about whether or not to have their child fitted for braces. Braces are perhaps one of most common aspects of pediatric orthodontics, as many children need braces at some point or another. Braces are often seen as the answer to a cosmetic problem, when really, the issues that braces correct can affect your child for the rest of his or her life. For that matter, it’s better to get started on pediatric orthodontics care when your child is young, versus putting it off until they’re older. Not only will their young, growing teeth be better able to accommodate treatments like braces — they’ll also be better able to deal with the cosmetic look of braces as a child than as an adult. Many adults find braces embarrassing and difficult to deal with — so why not spare your child those problems and have them fitted for braces when they’re young?

3. Fluoride

Fluoride treatments are among the most common types of pediatric dental treatments. But some parents don’t like the idea of fluoride, worrying that it can be harmful. While you should avoid giving your child toothpaste with fluoride when they’re under the age of two, fluoride is very beneficial for older children with baby teeth. Essentially, fluoride varnish painted over the teeth can cut down on the decay of baby teeth by 33%.

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