With a million other parental responsibilities, the temptation to leave dental visits until kids reach adolescence is high – after all, baby teeth will fall out to make way for their permanent counterparts so early dental visits aren’t a big deal, right? Wrong! Here’s why you should start your kids’ dental checkups as soon as their first tooth appears.
1. Get them into an early routine
An effective oral hygiene routine is the best way to prevent tooth decay and cavities, and regular dental checkups are an important part of getting your kids used to taking care of their teeth. At your child’s appointment here at Blyton, we will examine their teeth and gums for any problems and may apply fissure sealant (a thin coating of plastic that covers the back teeth to prevent food trapping in the grooves) and fluoride varnish, which strengthens the tooth enamel, helping to make teeth more resistant to decay.
2. Prevent cavities wreaking havoc on baby teeth
Baby teeth are softer and thinner than adult teeth, and a cavity can form in as little as six months. If left untreated, a cavity can reach the tooth’s nerve, causing additional damage. Children who lose their baby teeth to cavities or decay may face long-term issues such as speech impediments, overcrowding, and asymmetric growth of adult teeth. Regular dental checkups are essential for the prevention and early treatment of tooth decay.
3. Stop dental phobia before it starts
Around 1 in 4 patients in the UK dread visiting the dentist, but that fear is often rooted in traumatising experiences that took place when patient care and dental treatment were not as advanced as they are today. Taking your child to the dentist early on shows them that they have nothing to be afraid of and helps to prevent dental anxiety later in life.
4. Teach them a sense of responsibility
Like household chore timetables and homework assignments, keeping regular dental appointments is a great way to teach children the importance of committing to necessary obligations. If they view dental visits as an important part of caring for their teeth from an early age, they will be more likely to maintain healthy oral habits throughout adulthood.
5. Give them positive self-esteem
Smiling has numerous health benefits, from boosting our immune system to relieving stress. When children are ashamed of their teeth they often try to hide them, which can prevent them from smiling. Ensuring that their teeth are in good condition and aren’t a potential source of anxiety for your children is vital for their emotional wellbeing.
We recommend that parents bring their children for regular dental check-ups from a very young age when they start having baby teeth to establish a comprehensive oral health prevention program for your child. To schedule an appointment, contact one of our friendly team members today.