Your child’s baby teeth will eventually fall out. So why is it so important to take your little one to a dentist for regular checkups beginning at a young age? Is it that important? Absolutely. Here’s why:
Get Ahead of Anxiety and Dental Phobia
It’s estimated that 1-in-3 people suffer from some extent of dental anxiety. Oftentimes, it stems from a bad experience during childhood. Perhaps that person was in pain, and the first encounter they ever had with a dentist was because of a toothache or injury. When the dental office is something associated with discomfort, it’s even harder for those people to want to address dental issues in the future. So they get worse, become more painful, and treatments become more expensive to perform.
When you plan your child’s dental checkups in advance, we’re able to establish a positive mindset about dental care. The visits are comfortable, fun, and prevention-focused rather than scary because your child is in pain. These early appointments help shape the way children see “the dentist” in the future, making it easier for them to feel comfortable when they do need treatment.
Prevent Avoidable Dental Disease
Cavities and gum disease are preventable, but only if good oral hygiene, a balanced diet, and regular dental cleanings are part of your child’s routine. In some cases, we can even spot enamel demineralization before it becomes a cavity, applying fluoride to reverse the decay process well before a filling is needed. The same can be said for gum disease, which is completely reversible when it’s intercepted during the initial stages of gingivitis.
Cut Back on Dental Emergencies
Did you know that most dental emergencies are preventable? As we continually monitor your child’s oral health and development, we can intercept issues today that could lead to emergencies later on. And if we see that your child is more at risk for oral injuries (like having misaligned teeth), we can recommend a sports mouthguard or orthodontic referral to lower their risk of a traumatic injury to their mouth.
Ensure a Healthier Smile for Your Child in the Future
Adult teeth rely on healthy baby teeth during early development. If your child has an infection or cavity in a baby tooth, it can permanently alter their oral development for years to come. The importance of pediatric dental cleaning and exam visits reaches well into adulthood.
Early access to dental care will allow for healthier teeth overall. Both now and when your child’s permanent teeth erupt later on.
What to Expect From a Pediatric Dental Cleaning
At Palisades Dental Care, we take things at your child’s pace. Depending on their age, comfort level, and cooperation, we may just perform a brief exam or even a full cleaning with fluoride. The first visit will be a simple one, checking their teeth and possibly polishing them or taking an X-ray (to see the developing teeth underneath or screen for cavities.) If they’re comfortable, our hygienist will also clean their teeth and teach them age-appropriate techniques for brushing and flossing.
We also offer dental sealants and fluoride at your child’s cleaning appointment, helping them significantly reduce their risk of decay in the future. The benefits of pediatric dental cleaning visits are solely prevention-focused, reducing the risk of disease that could otherwise be avoided.
How Often Should Children Visit the Dentist?
Pediatric experts recommend that every child see the dentist for their first checkup by the time they turn 1 year old or their first tooth erupts. From there, plan to schedule an exam and cleaning every six months. If you have dental insurance, these prevention-based visits are usually covered at 100%. Even without insurance, these visits practically pay for themselves when you consider the avoidable treatments that your child will need without regular checkups.
Pediatric Dentistry in Dumont
If you’re looking for a family-friendly dental practice that offers pediatric dentistry in Dumont, Palisades Dental Care can help! Our welcoming office and friendly team are here to help your family enjoy healthy smiles at every stage of life. Contact our Dumont dentist today to reserve a checkup for your child (or yourself!)