We enjoy working with all of our young patients and realize that they have distinct needs when going to the dentist. We never try to push kids so they end up fearful of the dentist’s office. We want for their appointment to be as enjoyable and comfortable as possible, as well as for them to establish life-long relationships with the dentist’s office.
At our office in Cincinnati, we recommend moms and dads of small children to bring them along to the parent’s routine dental appointment so that the child can easily see what happens during the visit, and become familiar with our team and office.
We also recommend that your child’s initial visit be between 24 months and three years of age. At this age we can begin to observe the growth and progression of their teeth and mouth.
When New Teeth Arrive:
Your child’s first tooth erupts between ages 6-12 months and the remainder of their 20 primary or “baby” teeth typically erupt by age 3. During this time, gums may feel tender and sore, causing your child to feel irritable. To help alleviate this discomfort, we recommend that you soothe the gums by rubbing a clean finger or a cool, wet cloth across them. You may also choose to make use of a teething ring.
Your child’s primary teeth are shed at various times throughout childhood, and their permanent teeth begin erupting at age 6 and continue until age 21. Adults have 28 permanent teeth, or 32 including wisdom teeth.
Our advice is that kids as young as 2-3 should see our dentist! Prevention and early intervention can help maintain healthy, happy smiles for a lifetime!
BRACES? In Pre-School?
Most young parents today didn’t wear braces when they were teens. Truth is, the reason any kid back then had braces was because their teeth were really crowded and crooked. Some parents couldn’t afford braces. However, it was usually because their parents didn’t think that their teeth were misaligned enough for orthodontic treatment, and their dentist didn’t bring it up unless the parents asked about braces.
Back then, if your teeth were too crowded dentists simply pulled a few adult teeth. Of course, today, we realize that doing so was short-sighted and harmful to the balance of the bite.
Just within the last ten to fifteen years did we learn about the debilitating long-term health effects of an unbalanced bite. Orthodontic dentistry isn’t just for making a teenager’s teeth look straight and pretty anymore. There is much more than that to worry about. Misalignment and malocclusion can bring on chronic headaches and full-blown migraines. A misaligned bite can cause ringing in the ears and vertigo (dizziness). Completely healthy teeth can start to chip and wear away, producing a ragged-edged smile.
Worst of all, malocclusion usually isn’t something a parent can just “see”. It lurks in the background continuously exerting strain and pressure on the jaw joint, the teeth and the chewing muscles.
There are some real benefits in starting orthodontic treatment when children are much younger. The children usually don’t have to wear braces for a long period of time during those awkward teenage years. It is also much easier to expand the palate and allow room for all of the adult teeth to have the proper growing space. In most of those cases, young children will not get braces, however they will have their palates expanded by an appliance. This will make their arches wider. It allows space in the mouth for all of the child’s adult teeth to properly grow.
The doctors have developed relationships with some excellent orthodontists in the area and we can refer you and your child to an orthodontist if an exam reveals crowded or crooked teeth, or issues with the palate. We can help you choose the best orthodontist that meets the needs and temperament of your child.
Cavities Went Away in the 70’s… Didn’t They?
Scientists in the 1960’s found that fluoride helped build a stronger defense against the teeth’s enemies like bacteria and acids and sweets. And, yes, when fluoride was added to a city’s drinking water, the incidence of cavities dropped sharply. It was even predicted at one time that there would come a time when we wouldn’t need dentists anymore.
However, even the scientists of the 60’s couldn’t predict the development of Mountain Dew, Power Aid Energy Drinks and Gummy Worms. There is no way they could have foreseen that the average teenager would now eat their own weight in refined sugar every year. And, finally, even those scientists with a dark pessimistic vision of the 21st century, couldn’t imagine the power that high-fructose corn syrup would wield against fluoride, regular toothpaste and even daily flossing.
Tips For Your Family’s Oral Health:
• Limit frequency of meals and snacks.
• Encourage brushing, flossing and rinsing.
• Watch what your child drinks.
• Avoid giving your child sticky foods.
• Make treats part of meals.
• Choose nutritious snacks.
Ideal dental hygiene at your home is extremely important and needs to start at a rather early age. We take the time to advise moms and dads and kids on proper brushing and flossing methods to allow them to enjoy excellent dental health for a lifetime