Shocking statistics have just been released, revealing that many children are having teeth extracted before their first birthday. It is hard to believe that this is happening in the 21st Century UK, but unfortunately issues surrounding children’s tooth decay are still a big problem.
Much current focus is on the amount of sugar in children’s diets, and whilst this is important to monitor and address as appropriate, it is vital not to forget the importance of taking your child to the dentist on a regular basis.
At Wigmore Dental Practice it is recommended that children are brought in from an early age, soon after their teeth start to appear. This helps to familiarise your child with the practice environment and what goes on there – it can often be helpful for a young child to see their parent or older sibling having a dental check-up, because babies and small children enjoy observing and copying what they see.
These early dental visits will help your child to normalise the experience, and to see the dentist as a friendly face that they look forward to seeing to show off their hard work brushing their teeth. They also enable your dentist to step in early to prevent problems arising, and to treat them promptly should anything untoward be spotted. Fluoride varnish and fissure sealant will help to strengthen children’s teeth and protect them from tooth decay.
When problems are caught early, this will make treatment less stressful for both you and your child. No parent likes to see their child scared or in pain, and dental pain and complications are easily avoided.
It may also be recommended that your child see the hygienist regularly. The hygienist can provide essential information about a healthy diet, tooth brushing, and looking after your smile in an age-appropriate, fun, and engaging manner.
When children are aged between seven and nine, they will be offered an early orthodontic assessment. Again, early intervention helps to make treatment simpler, less stressful, and minimally invasive.
Establishing good oral health habits – including regular visits to the dentist – at an early stage will help to set your child up with good dental health for life.