Early Childhood Dental Care
Protect Your Child’s Teeth
Early childhood is a pivotal time for your children and their dental health. The years between infancy/toddlerhood and becoming an adolescent or teenager, are critical when it comes to developing proper oral health habits that will stay with them for a lifetime. That’s why early childhood dental care and education are so important, and why you and your kids should see a dentist like Dr. Stuckey regularly for oral exams and cleanings.
Developing Healthy Hygiene Habits
Protecting Primary Teeth
Despite the fact that primary (baby) teeth start to fall out around age 5 or 6 to make way for the permanent teeth, these teeth play a critical role during the development of your child’s smile. Primary teeth help maintain proper spacing in your child’s mouth and allow the permanent teeth to erupt correctly. If a primary tooth is lost or damaged, your child’s teeth may not develop properly.
That’s why it’s important to take steps to prevent issues like tooth decay from affecting your child’s baby teeth. Proper care for primary teeth includes brushing for at least 2 minutes, twice per day. You will need to assist your child when they brush their teeth until they have the skill to do so themselves (usually at about 6 years old).
Once your child can brush their own teeth, you should still supervise them to ensure they are brushing for at least 2 minutes and using proper technique. In addition, it’s important to floss your child’s teeth once per day until they are 10 years old, or until they have enough manual dexterity to do it on their own.
Finally, regular visits to a family dentist like Dr. Stuckey will help keep your child’s mouth healthy. Dr. Stuckey can clean your child’s teeth, check for cavities, and recommend treatments like dental sealants or fluoride treatments that will protect your little one’s primary teeth.
The Role Parents Play
Encouraging Proper Oral Hygiene
When it comes to helping your children develop proper oral hygiene habits, you are the best role model! By setting an example of proper oral hygiene (this includes visiting the dentist regularly, brushing and flossing, and helping your kids understand the importance of their teeth), you can help them develop better life-long oral health habits!
Common Dental Services
Beyond teeth cleanings, there are a few preventive treatments that are common and very beneficial for kids. Fillings to repair primary or permanent teeth are common, as are fluoride treatments, which help reverse minor tooth decay. Dental sealants are also common, and this treatment includes special resin to cover teeth and protect them from decay.
Mitigating Dental Anxiety
Care, Comfort, And Sedation Options
We know that seeing the dentist can be a bit scary for younger children. That’s why we do our best to keep our office fun and comfortable. Dr. Stuckey will explain dental concepts to your kids in a way that they will understand and appreciate, and make sure they always feel informed and comfortable. Additionally, we offer minimal inhaled sedation (laughing gas) for children, which can be helpful for anxiety when it comes to certain dental procedures.