The first visit to the dentist for a child should be enjoyable. Children aren’t born with a natural fear of the dentist, but they can fear the unknown. Dr. Miskin’s office uses non-frightening, pleasant, simple words to describe each treatment. We want your child and yourself to be comfortable and relaxed from the moment you arrive at our office. The more you and your child know about the first visit, the more comfortable you both will feel.
Children should visit the dentist by their third birthday. Your child's newly erupted teeth must receive proper dental care and benefit from good oral hygiene habits right from the start.
The first primary or baby teeth start erupting between 5 and 8 months and continue erupting until 3 years of age. As the teeth are erupting your child's gums may feel sore and tender. To help relieve this discomfort you could rub a clean finger or a cool, wet cloth across the gums. A teething ring may be used too. After the teething has finished, a total of 20 primary teeth should be present.
The baby teeth shed at different times throughout childhood and are usually gone by 12. The permanent teeth usually begin erupting at age six, and finish at age 21. Adults usually have 28 to 32 permanent teeth.
Good Oral Hygiene Habits
It is wise to examine the erupting baby teeth every few weeks looking for discolouration caused by sugary foods and liquids that can attack a new tooth. Make sure that you or your child brushes after feeding or eating. For optimal oral hygiene, we recommend brushing four times a day; after breakfast, lunch and supper and before bedtime.
You should brush your child’s teeth as soon as the first tooth erupts using a soft bristled toothbrush and a pea sized amount of toothpaste.
Flossing and brushing are an important part of good oral hygiene habits, and Dr. Miskin, or a staff member, will discuss with you the proper time and way to brush and floss. If you notice signs of decay, contact our office immediately.
Preventing Tooth Decay with Regular Checkups
Tooth decay is caused by sugars that turn to acid in the mouth, which then attack your teeth. Tooth decay is a high risk because many children and adolescents do not practice regular, proper oral hygiene routines. Regular brushing and flossing habits combined with regular dental visits will minimize tooth decay.
Also, every 6 months your child should visit the dentist for a regular cleaning and checkup.