Pediatric Dentistry in Vero Beach
The goal of pediatric dentistry is to help children maintain their primary teeth from the time they come in until they are shed, as well as their permanent teeth as they replace the primary teeth. Keeping primary teeth healthy is just as important as it is for permanent teeth. Primary teeth are placeholders for permanent teeth. The health of the primary teeth sets the tone for the long-term health of the permanent teeth.
Oral Care and Dental Hygiene Begins with the First Tooth
An important part of pediatric dentistry is teaching children how to care for their teeth and maintain their oral health. Children need to learn how to brush their teeth with the help of an adult until they are old enough to do it themselves effectively. Flossing should also be taught from a young age. It is recommended that children brush their teeth twice a day and floss once a day, with help from an adult when necessary.
The Role of the Pediatric Dentist in the Overall Health and Wellness of Children
In addition to good oral hygiene habits at home, visiting the dentist regularly is necessary to maintain dental health. Dental health also affects a child’s overall health and wellness. Healthy teeth are linked to balanced nutrition, healthy weight, and cardiovascular health. Dental appointments are just as important as well visits with your pediatrician.
Frequently Asked Questions
When Should Children Go to the Dentist for the First Time?
A child should start going to the dentist by their first birthday or within 6 months of the eruption of their first tooth. The purpose of the first dental appointment is to introduce the child to the idea of dental examinations and cleanings. When dental visits start at a young age, there is less chance of anxiety or nervousness.
Is it Worth it to Have Cavities Filled in Baby Teeth?
Yes, it is still worth having a cavity filled, even if it is in a baby tooth that will eventually fall out. A cavity in a baby tooth can still be painful for the child if left untreated. Pulling the tooth before the permanent tooth is ready to come in can cause orthodontic issues. A simple filling allows the tooth to remain in place until it is shed naturally.
My Child is Afraid of the Dentist. What Can I Do to Help?
The best way to help your child overcome their fear of the dentist is to talk to them calmly and reassure them that dental appointments are just to clean their teeth and keep them healthy. Allow them to bring a stuffed animal or blanket if it will help them feel calmer. Tell them what to expect during their appointment to avoid surprises. For severe dental anxiety, sedation options are available.
How Often Should Children Go to the Dentist?
Just as it is for adults, it is recommended that children go to the dentist for regular cleanings and dental exams every 6 months. In certain cases, more frequent visits may be recommended if there are dental health concerns that need to be addressed more often, such as recurring gum disease.