Finding a great pediatric dentist should be as simple as searching for the closest one to your home. Unfortunately, not all dentists provide high-quality care. When researching “children’s dentistry near me” or “pediatric dentist near me,” look for these qualities:
A kid-friendly environment
Good patient reviews
A dentist who is passionate about children and dentistry
Most dentists suggest that your child’s first appointment be within six months of the appearance of their first tooth. Teeth usually start to erupt at about six months of age, so around their first birthday is a good time.
Some people may think that is young, but it is important to get them started early. A dentist will be able to make sure their teeth, jaw, and mouth are developing normally. If there are concerns, they can be addressed before they become severe.
The dentist is also a good source of help and advice to curb habits like thumb-sucking and pacifier use. Whether you see a pediatric dentist or your family dentist, making visits a routine part of your child’s life can get them on the right track for ongoing oral health
Even though primary teeth, also called baby teeth, will eventually fall out, they are still important to your child’s overall dental health. They help in learning to chew, in speech development, and in making a path for permanent teeth.
Tooth decay can grow in baby teeth just as it can in adult teeth. Food and beverages, and even breast milk contain acids that can break down the tooth’s enamel. You should establish a routine of brushing your child’s teeth as soon as they come in. Even before your child gets his or her first tooth, you should clean their gums by wiping them with a soft cloth.
As your child gets older, you can teach them the proper way to brush and floss their own teeth. Some children still don’t brush well, so you will still need to supervise them.
If you suspect your child has a cavity, or if your dentist has found one, it needs to be fixed. This goes for baby teeth as well as permanent teeth. Baby teeth are important for the reasons detailed above, so it’s best if they stay intact.
Left untreated, a cavity can become much more severe. It may become much more painful for your child and much more expensive to fix.
The procedure for filling a tooth is the same as it is for an adult. One exception may be that the dentist might offer sedation dentistry. The dentist administers a gas that relaxes your child while keeping him or her fully awake.
The dentist will numb the area with a local anesthetic. He will then drill out the decay and fill the hole with a composite filling material.
Kid-friendly dentists know the best methods to put your child at ease. They can perform the procedure with minimal pain and discomfort.