Most people do not take their children to the dentist until the age of 2 and a half. However, The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that children see the dentist by the age of one.
You may think that seeing a dentist at the age of one makes little sense, as children still lack a full mouth of teeth then.
In this article, we’ll look at why dentists answer the question of “When should a child go to the dentist?” with the age of one year.
When Should a Child Go to the Dentist?
We’ve already established that the age a child should first see a dentist is one year. However, this can change depending on the child.
For some children, they should see a dentist sooner or later, depending on the circumstances.
The age of one year was established because most children’s first teeth erupt around the age of six months. A child should see a dentist six months after their first tooth appears.
Why Should a Child So Young See a Dentist?
You may wonder why a child under the age of two should see a dentist, especially since most children don’t have all of their teeth before then.
The answer is because your child’s primary teeth, or “baby teeth” are extremely important.
Even though your child will lose his or her primary teeth and have them replaced with their “adult teeth,” they’re still important. They set the foundation for your child’s future, as well as will serve your child until their new teeth come in.
The teeth must be kept healthy until they fall out on their own.
Why Should We Keep Primary Teeth Healthy?
Dental health is extremely important for overall health. And primary teeth are no exception.
These teeth help children learn to eat properly. Without the emergence of healthy primary teeth, children cannot learn to eat properly or to eat “adult” foods.
Teeth are also instrumental in helping your child learn to talk. Improperly aligned teeth, or failure to develop teeth, can result in speech delays.
Primary teeth also save a space for the adult teeth to grow.
What to Expect at a First Dental Appointment
Don’t worry, your child’s first dental appointment won’t include a full cleaning and polish. Instead, a pediatric dentist will discuss proper gum health and how to brush your child’s teeth. He or she will also discuss pacifier usage.
The dentist may perform a very small exam on your child.
Make sure your child is well-rested and not hungry before attending his or her first dental appointment. This makes things a little bit easier.
Making Your First Dental Appointment
Seeing a pediatric dentist is the best way to go for children. If you have any questions involving when should a child go to the dentist, he or she can help you answer them.
Once your child’s first tooth erupts, schedule an appointment for six months down the line.
For more information on dentistry and dental care in the San Diego and La Mesa area, visit our blog.