When Should You Take Your Baby to the Dentist?
Knowing when to take your baby to the dental clinic and when to tough it out is a fine-tuned skill. Unfortunately, this comes with experience and is prone to misreading the signs.
Teething is the first sign that your baby is growing up fast and healthy. It could happen to your little one as early as 3 months old! At this point in their lives, teething is going to be irritable and uncomfortable.
That’s why you need an expert to check their teeth up and allow for a smoother teething experience.
Not sure when should your baby go to the dentist? Stay right there because we have the answers you are looking for and more. Read on below to learn when and how to prepare for the visit for the first time:
- Why Do You Need to Take Your Child to the Dentist?
Before anything else, you should learn the importance of baby dentistry. There are endless numbers of parents who don’t take precautions about their children’s teeth.
It’s wrong to assume about the dental health of your baby in any way.
According to the NIDCR (National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research), 42% of children have tooth decay Even worse, from those aged 2 to 11 years old, most of them still carry primary teeth. Of those kids, 23% of them were never treated by professional dentists.
As soon as the first tooth erupts, you should take note of everything from here on out.
The primary teeth may be temporary, but the consequences of negligence can affect your kid all their life. Good dental hygiene serves as the foundation and guide for future teeth to erupt and settle into.
Taking care of your baby’s teeth early can also improve speaking abilities, eating habits, physical appearance, and demeanor.
Brushing and flossing often will work wonders, but may not be enough. Your baby won’t be able to communicate properly about the pain or uneasy feelings they may have.
Pediatric dentists are knowledgeable enough to discuss how to practice oral health. You can take this opportunity to know more about dental health and how to take care of your baby’s teeth!
- When Should Your Baby Go to the Dentist?
The ADA (American Dental Association) released a recommendation about how often your child should visit a dentist. Your baby’s first dentist appointment should happen as early as their first birthday or 6 months after the first tooth appears from their mouth.
Look out for some of the following signs and symptoms of teething:
- Excessive drooling
- A slight fever
- Eating whatever they get their hands on
- Swollen gums
- Caressing their cheeks
The first teeth may erupt between 5-8 months but could vary for everyone else. It’s possible to have delays in your child’s primary teeth development because of genetics.
Did you know it may also depend on their snacking habits? If you let your baby eat food with high amounts of sugar and starch, it may lead to tooth decay and cavities.
It’s okay to let them eat stuff once in a while but try to their sugar intake from now on.
It is also possible for not a single tooth to appear around the 17-18-month mark. At this point, you should consider scheduling a meeting with a dentist immediately.
There will be instances where you didn’t take your children to the dentist early enough. In this case, it’s better late than never! It’s important to identify and treat dental problems as soon as possible.
- What Can You Expect from Your Baby’s Dentist Appointment?
Most of the first visits from dentists are usually fast. You can rest assured that a good pediatric dentist will do anything to make your baby comfortable and relaxed. They usually try to look friendly and cheerful for the baby to avoid a fuss.
The dentist may ask you to sit on a dental chair and carry the child on your lap. In this way, you can comfort them if they ever get overwhelmed about the situation. After you and your baby settle in, the pediatric dentist will now start the examination.
They will check the gums, tooth decay, and numbers of your child’s tooth.
The pediatric dentist will ask you about the dental health history of your family and the oral habits of your baby. This is to expect future dental problems that come with genetics.
- How to Get Your Baby Ready?
Before heading to your baby’s dentist appointment, you need to familiarize them with the process. This is to prevent any agitation and fuss during the visit.
You can show books and pictures of the dentist. Play pretend with a toy doctor (or dentist) kit. You can be creative and have a fun bonding time!
Consider scheduling your appointment when your baby is awake and energetic. Let them take a nap beforehand to make them more cooperative while the dentist is examining their oral health.
- How to Get Yourself (The Parent) Ready
Take a look at your schedule and clear it out. In addition to preparing your baby, you also have to get everything ready for the dental visit. This is important because you don’t want to forget anything essential that will help the dental assessment.
First off, contact the dental clinic. Check if you have any papers and forms you need to fill out. Talk about anything they might require so you can prepare it ahead of time.
In this first visit, be sure to ask any questions and get several tips and advice to take of your children’s teeth. The dentist can teach you about oral health and talk about the gradual development of your baby’s teething.
When to Take Your Baby to the Dentist and What You Can Do About It
Here are some of the things you need to keep in mind when it comes to baby’s first time to a pediatric dentist. Now you’ll know when it’s time to bring your baby to the dentist and when you shouldn’t panic.
Did you like this dental guide? There’s more where that came from so please check out our other health and fitness articles today!