About 80% of people will develop a cavity before they’re 34 years old. The oral health habits your child develops now can benefit them into adulthood. Taking them to their Lexington children’s dentist regularly can ease dental anxiety, too.
Otherwise, a fear of visiting the dentist might keep your child from scheduling their own appointments as an adult.
Not sure if it’s time to visit your Lexington pediatric dentist? Read on to discover the signs you should schedule an appointment!
First, make sure to schedule your child’s first dental visit by the time they’re 12 months of age. Otherwise, take them in within six months of their first tooth erupting.
Your child’s first visit to their Lexington pediatric dentist gives them the chance to grow comfortable around the dentist. The first appointment will only last about 30 minutes.
Depending on your child’s age, the visual exam might involve their:
- Oral tissues
The dentist will check for growth and development to make sure your child is on the right track.
During this appointment, your child might also have their first cleaning. The hygienist will polish their teeth, removing plaque, tartar, or stains. Plaque is a tacky substance that can cling to teeth.
When left unattended too long, plaque can harden into tartar. Your child’s risk of tooth decay and gum disease could increase.
During this first dental visit, talk to your child’s dentist about fluoride. Fluoride treatments can protect your child’s teeth.
Your children’s dentist in Lexington might also recommend X-rays to diagnose decay.
Before leaving the dentist’s office, ask about preventative care at home. Your Lexington pediatric dentist might mention:
- How to brush your child’s teeth
- Cleaning their gums before their teeth erupt
- Using a small amount of toothpaste for young children
- Baby bottle tooth decay
- Limiting time with a bottle
- Limiting foods that cause tooth decay
Let the dentist know if you have any questions.
If your child is complaining of toothaches or pain, consider visiting their pediatric dentist right away.
Pain indicates something is wrong. The sooner you visit your Lexington pediatric dentist, the sooner they can diagnose the problem.
Toothaches usually occur when the nerve in the root of a tooth is irritated. It could indicate an infection, decay, or injury. However, referred pain from their jaw might cause toothache symptoms as well.
Examine your child’s teeth. If you notice any white or brown spots on the surface of their teeth, schedule a dental visit. White and brown spots might indicate dental caries (cavities) are starting to form.
Take your child in to see their dentist as soon as possible if you notice a tooth that’s turning brown or black.
Tooth decay can progress quickly when left untreated. If there’s any discoloration, visit the dentist right away. They can assess your child’s teeth to ensure they receive the treatment they need.
Your child might complain that their gums hurt when they brush or floss. Perhaps their gums look swollen, red, or begin bleeding. Visit your dentist for an exam if your child has irritated gums.
These symptoms might indicate gingivitis, or gum disease. When left untreated, gum disease can develop into periodontitis. Bacteria can also spread, causing additional complications.
Your dentist might recommend scaling and planing treatment.
Your child might experience sensitivity to hot or cold foods. If they begin experiencing dental pain, it could indicate dental caries. Your child might already have a cavity.
Visit your children’s dentist in Lexington. If it is a cavity, the dentist can recommend the best course of action.
Your child’s baby teeth will begin falling out as their permanent, adult teeth start to erupt. Losing their baby teeth is a normal part of growing up. This process usually starts when your child is 6 years old.
If one of your child’s permanent teeth begins to wiggle or becomes loose due to trauma, visit the dentist right away.
Though your child should lose their baby teeth between the ages of 6 and 12, some children experience delays. In fact, some children don’t lose their baby teeth even after the adult tooth erupts. Visit the dentist to determine if it’s time to intervene.
Your dentist might recommend your child sees an orthodontist if a tooth comes in crooked. They can help you determine the best course of action for your child’s smile.
Nearly 87% of children have visited their dentist in the past year. You should also visit your Lexington pediatric dentist if it’s been six months since your child’s last visit. Visiting every six months will allow the dentist to assess your child’s oral health.
Regular appointments will allow the dentist to intervene early on if they notice signs of a problem. They can assess your child’s health and make personalized recommendations based on their needs.
Routine visits also allow your child to benefit from professional cleanings. The hygienist can remove plaque from your child’s teeth before it hardens.
Neglecting to visit every six months, however, could allow problems to progress to advanced stages.
Healthy Teeth: Visit a Lexington Children’s Dentist
The healthy habits your child develops today can benefit their oral health for years to come. If these symptoms sound familiar, visit their Lexington children’s dentist. Otherwise, make sure to schedule checkups and routine cleanings every six months.
With routine appointments, you can keep their smile healthy and cavity-free!
Ready to schedule your child’s next appointment? We can’t wait to see you both!
Contact us today to get started.