Parents enjoy many milestones in their child's life and this includes when they get their first tooth! You may be surprised to learn that when you see that first tooth; your child is actually ready for their first visit to see Dr. Hubbard and the team at Coastal Pediatric Dentistry.
While children typically get their first tooth when they are around six months old, many dentists actually recommend an initial visit around the child's first birthday to make sure teeth and gums are healthy and properly cleaned. Although this may seem a bit early to some parents, beginning a lifelong preventative care program at this time will help keep that first tooth and all the others to follow healthy and cavity-free. Most children have their full set of primary teeth in place by age three.
Babies start getting their teeth between three and nine months of age. When your child begins teething, they may show increased drooling, biting, and irritability. Some lucky babies (and parents) actually show no signs of teething at all! By the age of three, all 20 of their baby teeth will come in. You can expect the first permanent tooth (and the first visit from the tooth fairy) around the age of six!
One of the most important issues of infant dental care is early childhood dental caries, commonly known as "baby bottle tooth decay". Frequent exposure, over time, to sugary liquids such as milk, formula and fruit juice causes this condition, which can seriously damage your child's baby teeth and effect their overall oral health. The sugary liquids from these drinks surround the teeth when your baby sleeps, which can lead to cavities in the upper and lower front teeth.
In their first years of life, sucking is a normal part of development that proves to be comforting. Sucking often brings comfort even after a child no longer needs to feed from a bottle. This is where a pacifier comes in to play. During the first few years, giving your child a pacifier probably won't damage their mouth, but frequent and long-term use can cause serious problems. Be especially careful to end this habit when your child starts to lose their baby teeth.
Cavities are actually common in children and even babies can get them. A cavity forms when bacteria and food particles are not brushed away from the tooth properly. A popular spot for cavities is the hard to reach chewing areas in the back of the mouth. Tooth decay begins as a white chalky spot that eventually turns yellow to brown and grows progressively until it becomes a hole.
Early pediatric dentistry is not only important for the health of your child, it can also save you money in the long run. Believe it or not, studies show that children who have their first dental visit before the age of one have 40 percent lower dental costs in their first five years than children who do not. Contact Coastal Pediatric Dentistry to schedule your child's first appointment today!