Many parents question when to start bringing their children to the dentist. It is recommended that children visit the dentist as soon as their first teeth erupt by their first birthday. This gives the dentist a chance to practice prevention against tooth decay as well as creates positive dental experiences early on.
Encouraging your child to drink water vs. drinking sugary beverages (juice, pop) early on will greatly decrease the risk of your child developing cavities in the future.
While your child may want to be independent in brushing their own teeth, evidence suggests they need assistance until at least age 8. Let your child have a turn with the toothbrush, then follow up after them to ensure a thorough job has been done.
“It’s just a baby tooth, it’s going to fall out anyway.” While this is mostly true it is more than “just a baby tooth” baby teeth play an important role in the mouth. They not only help the child to chew properly, they aid in proper speech and act as placeholders for the permanent teeth to erupt in the proper place. Some people even retain certain baby teeth into adulthood! Many don’t know that the baby molars which erupt around age 2 stay in the mouth until about age 10-12, they serve an important purpose for quite a long time, thus making it very important to take care of them and have them restored if children do get cavities on them.