You might find it hard to worry about your child’s baby teeth. After all, they’re just going to fall out and be replaced by “real” teeth later, right? Surely you can afford to be a little lax when it comes to caring for something that’s not supposed to last anyway. But don’t make this mistake; those temporary teeth are still extremely important for your child’s present and future oral health, and those visits to the family dentist in Tysons need to happen sooner rather than later. Here’s what you need to know about taking care of your kid’s first teeth.
When Do Baby Teeth First Come In?
Baby teeth (also called primary teeth) are actually already present in your child’s jaws as soon as they’re born. They usually begin erupting between 6 months and 1 year of age; most children have a full set of 20 baby teeth around age 3. The front teeth usually come in first, although every child is different.
Why is Taking Care of Baby Teeth So Important?
Even though they’re temporary, baby teeth allow your child to bite, chew, speak, and smile. They also serve as placeholders for permanent teeth; if they’re lost too early, the adult teeth will likely grow in crooked or misaligned. Furthermore, if a baby tooth has a cavity, not only will it be very painful, but it could also cause an infection that spreads to the still-developing permanent teeth. By taking care of your child’s baby teeth through brushing and regular dental visits, not only are you helping to keep their mouth healthy, you’re also teaching good oral health habits that will make a big difference in the future.
When Should I Start Taking My Child to the Dentist?
The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that you should begin taking your child to the dentist by age 1, or within six months of their first tooth coming in. In addition to the routine cleaning, the dentist can also give you advice on brushing at home and addressing potential problems like thumb sucking.
How Should I Take Care of My Child’s Baby Teeth at Home?
Make sure to brush your child’s teeth at least twice a day. Remember to only use the recommended amount of fluoride toothpaste. For children under the age of 3, this will be a smear about the size of a grain of rice, while children ages 3 to 6 should receive a pea-sized amount. When your child begins brushing by themselves, you should supervise them and remind them not to swallow the toothpaste.
Good oral health early in life helps lead to good oral health down the road; just because your child’s baby teeth will fall out eventually doesn’t mean that you can be less careful about avoiding cavities or teaching the right habits. Be sure to find a children’s dentist in Tysons as early as you can to help your little one’s smile stay healthy and beautiful.
About the Practice
At Avanti Dentistry, dentists use spa-inspired amenities to help create a relaxing atmosphere for patients; some are certified to use oral conscious sedation for patients with dental anxieties. They use the latest advanced dental technology such as intraoral cameras that allow them to examine and treat your mouth as thoroughly as possible. To make an appointment for your child, contact the practice at their website or at (703) 625-6229.