When should my child first visit the dentist?
We recommend seeing a pediatric dentist for the first time 6 months from the first tooth or by age 1, whichever comes first.
How often should my child see the dentist?
The American Dental Association and the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that children have dental checkups every six months. Some children require more frequent visits. Dr. Sam will recommend a recall schedule that is best for your child depending on oral hygiene, tooth decay, presence of orthodontic appliances, or disability.
Why are baby teeth important?
Baby or primary teeth are very important for several reasons. First, primary teeth allow children to speak clearly and chew food naturally. Second, these teeth also help hold space for the permanent teeth, helping to guide the permanent teeth into their proper position.
When will my child get his/her first tooth?
While timing varies, most babies get their first tooth around 6-8 months of age. Since sore gums can be common when teeth are erupting, we recommend a clean, cooled teething ring or washcloth to soothe the area.
When will my child lose his/her first tooth?
Children usually lose their first tooth around age six, but this can vary among children. Usually, the bottom front teeth are the first to be lost.
How often should my child brush?
We recommend that parents brush their child’s teeth at least twice a day with a toothpaste with fluoride. Children under the age of three should use a smear of toothpaste that is size of a grain of rice. Once your child reaches the age of three, this can be increased to a pea-sized amount. Please assist your child with teeth brushing until they learn how to tie their shoe or can color within the lines.
How important is flossing?
Flossing is very important as it removes plaque and trapped food in between your child’s teeth, where it is very common for children to get cavities. You should help your child floss until at least age 7-8.
How can I prevent nursing decay?
If feeding (with bottle or nursing) throughout the night, use a wet washcloth to wipe your child´s teeth and gums after eating. Never put anything other than water in your child’s bottle or sippy cup.
What should I do if my child has a toothache?
We recommend rinsing the irritated area with warm salt water and then placing a cold compress on the area if their face is swollen. You can also give your child Tylenol or ibuprofen for pain. Avoid aspirin as it can cause severe health problems for children. Finally, see a dentist as soon as possible.
Is a thumb sucking or pacifier habit harmful for my child’s teeth?
Generally, sucking thumbs, fingers, or pacifiers will only become a problem if they are continued for a prolonged period of time. Most children stop these habits on their own, but sucking habits should definitely be discouraged by 3 years of age. If your child continues to suck thumbs or fingers after this age, a mouth appliance may be recommended to help stop the habit.
What should I do if my child knocks out a permanent tooth?
First, the most important thing is to remain calm. If this is a baby tooth, do nothing. If it is an adult tooth and you can find it, hold it by the crown (the white part) and put it in a cup of milk to rinse. Then, try to put the tooth back in the socket from which it fell and see a dentist as soon as possible. If you are unable to put it back in place, keep the tooth in cold milk or Hank’s Solution (a specific type of salt solution available at any pharmacy) and see a dentist right away. If your child is experiencing any injuries other than the tooth trauma (headaches, nausea/vomiting, dizziness, or loss of consciousness) your child needs to be seen at an emergency room.