When should you start taking your child to the dentist? While every child and situation may be different, it is best that children as young as one-year-old have their teeth evaluated and to catch any early concerns.
We know that one-year-olds do not have much patience, so we keep these visits relatively short with little treatment. Our goal for these first visit is education, which in turn can save you time and money of having to be referred to a pediatric specialist or pediatric surgeon later on. In most cases when the children are calm, we can patiently treat, explain and work with each child in a fun, interactive way.
Introducing Your Child to a Good Dental Routine
By 2 1/2 most children have cut all of their baby teeth, so toddlerhood is a great time to teach good dental habits. Baby teeth hold space for permanent teeth, and it is imperative to take great care of them. Decay in baby teeth increases the risk of decay in permanent teeth.
While it may seem counterintuitive to fix baby teeth if they are only going to fall out later, it is key to maintaining healthy adult teeth.
If a child loses their baby teeth due to severe decay, a replacement will have to be put in so that the adult tooth can grow in properly. When a baby tooth is lost prematurely, the surrounding teeth can shift and close up the space meant for an adult tooth.
Preparing for the First Visit
It is best that kids see us on their first birthday and twice-yearly after that. These combined with the right home care will keep those teeth healthy all through childhood.
Remember for toddlers; their first visit can be a scary adventure. Weird instruments, lots of new noises, and new people can rattle even the most laid-back 2-year-old. However, with careful preparation maybe some bribery, a first trip to the dentist can be fun. There are a lot of good childrens books you can read to child to prepare them for their first dental visit.
During the first exam, we will check all of your child’s existing teeth for decay, examine their bite and look for any other potential issues with the gums, jaw and oral tissues. We will also clean any teeth and assess the need for fluoride. Some topics we might discuss with you include:
- Proper teeth brushing practices for your child’s teeth and gums
- Cavity prevention
- Fluoride needs
- Oral habit such as thumb sucking. Tongue thrusting and lip sucking
- Developmental milestones
- Proper Nutrition
- Visiting Our Office
We will also discuss with you the scheduling and importance of dental check-ups. It is most beneficial if we see children every six months to build up their comfort and confidence level in visiting the dentist.
The importance of frequent visits when they are little is to build up their comfort level with their provider. The more comfort they have with us the higher the likelihood we can ensure that they maintain that healthy smile throughout childhood. As with your child’s pediatrician, you will want to choose a competent, patient professional who is adept at working with the kids to care for your little one. At Southview Dentistry we take great pride in treating our little ones with the utmost care.
Healthy Practices at Home
A great smile begins at home. These pro tips will help keep your child on the path to a bright, healthy smile.
- Stop sucking habits early. They lead to misaligned teeth and possible overbite.
- Choose a soft, kid-size brush. Use a new brush every three months.
- Only use a pea-size amount of toothpaste on your child’s brush. This amount is adequate fluoride and protection from fluorosis, a damaging oral condition caused by over-ingestion of fluoride.
- Be sure to help your toddler brush after breakfast and before bed. The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that children under eight brush their teeth with guidance from parents.
- Stay away from starchy and sugary snacks. Their notoriously sticky nature can increase the risk of tooth decay.
- If your child is not quite ready to brush, you may rinse their mouth with water to cleanse away food particles and sugar.
- Water with fluoride is best, if you are not sure about yours, contact your community’s water department to find out if it is. We will also be happy to recommend a suitable fluoride treatment.
Why choose Southview Dentistry for your Pediatric Dentist in Charlotte?
We have proudly served Charlotte residents since 2009; it is of the utmost importance that we create a welcoming, comforting and happy environment for our patients and our staff. We believe that through education we can build a trusting and lasting relationship with each patient.
A modern family dentistry, at Southview we take care of your family’s teeth from the time the first one pops up. With a highly educated team and sleek modern technology, Southview Dentistry makes dental visits for our younger patients fun and educational! Kids can watch TV while having their exams done in our bright procedure rooms. We are the best pediatric dentistry of South Charlotte.
But don’t take our word for it, see what our outstanding clients are saying about us.
Looking for a pediatric dentist Charlotte? We would love to meet you and your family. To learn more about children’s dentistry visit our website or call us today.
A word about Dr. Kelly and Dr. Micheal
In addition to focusing on continuing their dental education and providing the best patient care possible, Dr. Kelly and Dr. Micheal have a real passion for giving back to their community. Southview dentistry works side by side with the Doves Nest, which is the Charlotte Rescue Mission women’s program. Our Doctors believe that by providing dental care to their patients so that they may be pain-free, they may then focus on recovery. The Congenital Heart Defect Foundation is another foundation very dear to our doctors, having gone through heart surgery with their youngest child who was born with a heart defect. The Doctors are also very supportive of the Muscular Dystrophy Association and Williams Syndrome Association.