Good oral hygiene begins from young. It is important to cultivate the habit of emphasising the importance of dental care when a child is young.
It has been recommended that families should organise a trip to the dentist by the first year of age, when the first baby teeth begin to emerge.
Early childhood dental visits before the onset of problems tend to make a child more accepting of dental treatment.
It is when a child is brought to a dentist in pain or when extensive treatment need to be carried out, that diffculties in treating a child occur. It is much more pleasant, healthy and cheaper to have routine regular dental visits.
The dentist will also be able to advise you on certain aspects of cleaning and hygiene.
Why do we need to worry? Won’t the baby teeth fall out eventually?
Baby teeth are important in function and speech development during the stages of growth. They are also needed to be kept in place until the adult teeth emerge so that spaces are kept for the adult teeth.
Help! My child’s adult tooth is growing behind the baby tooth.
It is common for the adult teeth to grow behind the baby tooth. As the adult tooth grows and emerges further, the root of the baby tooth will dissolve and the baby tooth will drop. The adult tooth usually moves forward into the space.
How can I prepare for my child’s first visit?
If your child’s first visit is before any onset of pain, you may let your child know that the dentist will be there to check the teeth.
Do not use the dental visit in a negative tone (eg. “Don’t misbehave or the dentist will pull all your teeth out”). The child will start relating a dental visit as a punishment, and will make cooperation a lot more difficult.