Parents have many questions regarding their children’s teeth.
Below are the answers to some common questions but feel free to call if you have others or for an appointment.
When should I take my child to the dentist for the first check-up?
By their first birthday. Other factors can influence when the child should be seen. A premature birth, prolonged use of a bottle or chronic illness as an infant usually requires an earlier examination.
Are thumbsucking and pacifier habits harmful for a child’s teeth?
The definitive answer is “sometimes”. Many factors are involved in whether these habits are harmful . Frequency, intensity and duration of the habit all influence the effects on the teeth and jaws. Most children stop the habit on their own before any permanent harm is done but occasionally dental appliances are needed to help the patient stop. Children three years and under should not be pestered about a thumb or pacifier habit.
How often does my child need to come in for a check-up?
A check-up every six months is recommended in order prevent cavities and other dental problems. However, your pediatric dentist can tell you when and how often your child should visit based on their personal oral health.
What toothpaste is best for my child’s teeth?
Look for an ADA approved toothpaste that has fluoride and that has a taste the child likes. If the taste of the toothpaste is objectionable to the child then it will be less effective because they won’t want to brush as long. This is true for children, teens and adults. Only a minimal amount of toothpaste is needed for preschoolers and they should always be assisted by an adult.
Is juice harmful to my child’s teeth?
YES. Any sweetened drink (juice, soft drinks, sweet tea, sports drinks) sipped between meals has the potential for severe dental problems regardless of the child’s age. If your child is drinking juice from a sippy cup stop reading this and go pour it out and replace it with water. The combined effects of juice and a sippy cup for preschoolers is usually disastrous for their teeth.
How do I know if my child is getting enough fluoride?
Have your pediatric dentist evaluate the fluoride level of your child’s primary source of drinking water. If your child is not getting enough fluoride internally through water (especially if the fluoride level is deficient or if your child drinks bottled water without fluoride), then your pediatric dentist may prescribe fluoride supplements.
How can parents help prevent tooth decay?
Parents should take their children to the dentist regularly, beginning with the eruption of the first tooth. Then, the dentist can recommend a specific program of brushing, flossing, and other treatments for parents to supervise and teach to their children. These home treatments, when added to regular dental visits and a balanced diet, will help give your child a lifetime of healthy habits.
Many more Questions & Answers
Can be found at aapd.org