Pediatric dentists can care for a child's teeth throughout childhood, and they can provide an age-appropriate, comforting approach to the teaching of good oral hygiene. Various professional organizations have different recommendations on when children should first go to the pediatric dentist fairfax va
, but most experts agree that it should take place by a child's first birthday. Parents can read on to lean how pediatric dentists can help them establish a lifetime of good oral care habits in children.Why Good Pediatric Dental Care is Important
Taking a child to the dentist is important for the establishment of good oral care habits, and it can protect their primary and permanent teeth. While baby teeth are only there temporarily, they serve an important function and still need proper care. Pediatric dentist Springfield VA
recommend that primary teeth stay in position until they fall out on their own, because they help young children learn how to talk and chew properly, and they act as space maintainers for permanent teeth.Pediatric Dentists can Point Out Early Signs of Tooth Decay
Many parents don't see their young child's habits as an issue, but certain behaviors can cause dental problems as a child grows. Dentists can often tell if children engage in behaviors such as:
Lip/thumb sucking: Such behavior can cause serious problems if it is still done after the permanent teeth grow in.
Bottle-related decay: Also referred to as nursing caries, these oral issues result when babies constantly drink sugar-laden liquids such as juice, formula or milk. This is especially problematic for children who drink bottles at bedtime as a source of comfort. Pediatric dentists advise parents to switch to water-filled bottles or pacifiers instead.
Missing or damaged baby teeth
: If primary teeth are damaged or missing, permanent misalignment of the permanent teeth can result. A springfield pediatric dentist can tell parents more about the use of space maintainers.
Thrusting of the tongue: Habitual pressing of the tongue against a child's lips can cause issues with the teeth. Parents in such a situation may need a speech pathologist's help in changing the child's swallowing patterns.
Regular dental care is just as important for children as it is adults. Children should see a pediatric dentist with Let's Smile! Pediatric Dentistry twice per year; regular visits can help children become more comfortable in the dentist's chair, and it can provide them with a good head start on oral hygiene.