In part one of this two-part blog series, we went over some of the simple reasons why it's so important for parents to pay close attention to oral care in their babies and infants. Oral care begins earlier in life than some parents are prepared for, but having the right information will ensure you're ready for this and know how to approach care for your baby.
At Hillfield Pediatric & Family Dentistry, we're happy to offer the very best pediatric dental services available in Layton and nearby areas, including for babies and toddlers who are just entering the realm of oral care for the first time. While part one of our series went over why parents need to be attentive to this area, today's part two will go over some common child "firsts" when it comes to oral health - when they typically happen, plus how to proceed once you notice them.
While there's no set date for when the first dental visit should take place, it's generally recommended that you visit with a pediatric dentist when your baby turns one year old. During this initial appointment, the dentist will examine your little one's mouth to check for any signs of tooth decay or other oral issues such as misalignment or jaw growth problems.
Now, there may be cases where your baby has a visible dental issue earlier and you should seek out assistance in those cases, of course. But the one-year mark is usually when full checkups begin, which will become regular occurrences to ensure your child's teeth are developing correctly and remain healthy.
Another important moment in your child's oral health timeline is when their first baby teeth appear. This typically happens around six months of age, though some children may see their first tooth as early as three months or not until 12 months - it varies greatly from person to person.
When the baby tooth surfaces, you'll need to begin brushing properly with a fluoride-free toothpaste, as fluoride can be dangerous for young children if ingested. Brushing should take place at least once a day to remove any food and bacteria from the tooth surface.
While this isn't necessarily a "baby" event, most children will begin noticing loose or wiggly teeth as early as six years of age. This is the start of their permanent teeth coming in, and you'll need to begin taking extra care to ensure all adult teeth come in properly.
Once your child's baby tooth becomes loose, it should eventually fall out - a process that can be uncomfortable and even painful at times. When this happens, they may need additional help from the dentist to ensure the adult tooth that comes in takes its proper place.
As parents, it's important to pay attention to these milestones in your child's oral health development, as this will give you an idea of when it's time to start visiting a pediatric dentist and when treatments may be needed. Hillfield Pediatric & Family Dentistry is here to help and can provide the best pediatric dental care for your little one, so please don't hesitate to get in touch with us if you have any questions or concerns. We look forward to helping you keep your baby's smile bright and healthy!