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Your Child’s First Dental Visit

April 25, 2024

Filed under: Uncategorized — midlandkidsdentist @ 2:57 am

Smiling infant on a bedNothing is more exciting than your infant’s baby teeth emerging from their gums. Although babies usually don’t start getting teeth until about 6 months old, it’s never too early to introduce them to good oral hygiene. Even before their first tooth erupts, you can keep their mouth clean by wiping their gums with a wet, soft cloth twice a day. Besides caring for their mouth at home, they should see their dentist before their first birthday. It’s normal to have some anxiety about their upcoming appointment, but there’s no reason to fret. Here’s what you can expect during their cleaning and checkup.

Importance of Early Oral Hygiene

Your child’s baby teeth only last for a few years before they fall out. However, they are invaluable to their development. Losing a tooth too soon can affect their oral functions and speech. It can also lead to invasive and costly treatments later. 

Early oral hygiene stops common dental issues from occurring in the first place. The biggest threat to your child’s oral health is tooth decay. Cavities can start when their first tooth appears. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and a small amount of toothpaste to brush their teeth twice a day.

Preparing for Their Appointment

The dentist can be a pretty scary place if your little one hasn’t had an appointment before. Prepare your child with books or TV shows to learn more about their upcoming visit. 

Ensure they are fed and rested, so they aren’t cranky when in the dentist’s chair. Bring a comfort item with you, like their favorite stuffed animal. 

Pediatric Cleanings and Dental Checkups

Your child’s pediatric dentist will look in their mouth to count their teeth and check several things to ensure your little one’s oral development is on track. As your child grows, their cleanings and checkups will include more, like X-rays. 

A dental hygienist will also clean their teeth and discuss healthy oral hygiene habits with your little one. They may perform other services as well, like fluoride varnish or dental sealants. 

Their dentist will review X-rays of their mouth, in addition to a visual examination, to see potential issues not visible to the naked eye, like decay, infections, or impacted teeth. 

Your child should have a cleaning and checkup every 6 months. Researchers have found that children who receive early dental care are more likely to commit to regular appointments as adults. You can help set the foundation for a lifelong commitment to a healthy smile with regular dental checkups.

About Dr. Ramu Vuppala

Dr. Vuppala has over 20 years of experience in dentistry. He earned his dental degree at the University of the Pacific Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry and has continued his education in various specialties, including pediatrics, sedation, and orthodontics. Dr. Vuppala is a proud member of many professional organizations, including the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry. Request an appointment through his website or call his office at (432) 315-0195.

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