No kid wants to go to the dentist. It can be hard to schedule a time for them to get a teeth cleaning, checkups, or other important dental work. By showing them the importance – and the fun – of going to the dentist, you can encourage a more regular schedule.
One of the most common dental questions we hear is, “How do I know when it’s time to take my kids to the dentist?” At what age are they old enough to go? How often do they need cleaning? What are some warning signs to look out for when your child is expressing pain or discomfort in the teeth?
There are many reasons why you would want to schedule teeth cleaning for your kids right away. Here are some ways you can tell that it’s definitely time to bring them into our friendly professionals.
Knowing Your Toddler
Toddler age may seem like such a young time in a person’s life to start taking them to the dentist. However, the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry and Colgate, you can take your child to the dentist as early as 1 year old. This is due to the way teeth develop at such a young age and certain protections that should be taken care of as quickly as possible.
Otherwise, your child could develop a dental issue at an early stage in their life. In order to ensure that you are helping your child practice the best dental hygiene, you can start making dental appointments for them by the time their first tooth starts to come in.
It’s All About Education
If there’s one universal truth about young kids, it’s that they really do love to learn. And they’re very good at it! By introducing them to the dentist’s chair early in life, they can start to become comfortable with the process of going to the dentist and getting a check-up. Child-friendly methods ensure they are slowly and gently introduced to teeth cleanings, x-rays, exams, and fillings. It’s a teaching process, and thankfully, most kids are willing to learn.
How Often Should You Bring In Your Child?
The ADA recommends that your child come into the dentist once every six months, from the start of their dental journey. This is the amount of time needed between teeth cleanings in order for the dentist to observe what goes on naturally in your child’s mouth. Coming in every six months allows for catching any obstacles or warning signs early on. Interventions may then take place to prevent your child from sustaining a disease.
For example, the formation of cavities worsens over time if the area is untreated. By being able to catch sight of these cavities every six months so that the cavities can be easily filled before they develop into a root canal problem.
Questions to Prepare For
As the parent of a child in the dentist’s chair, prepare to answer the following questions:
- At what age did your child’s teeth start coming in?
- What kind of toothpaste do they use?
- Have you noticed anything abnormal?
- Does your child have any sensitivities?
These questions can help the dentist start to assess treatment plans. Your child will experience a gentle cleaning and examination. But don’t forget to schedule an appointment for them to come back in six months’ time!
Children’s Teeth Cleaning
Our family-focused dentistry would love to work with you and your child. Our pediatric staff can offer a comfortable and fun setting so that your child will fit in with ease. If you think your child is ready to start coming in for regular appointments, let us know and we’ll be happy to greet your little one! Contact us online or call us at (805) 307-7656 to get started. New patients and emergencies are always welcome!