If you had a child this year, then this holiday season is extra special! At Magic Smiles, one of the questions we get asked most often by new parents is, “When should I schedule my child’s first dental appointment?”
Many people have their own opinion of what the answer to this question may be, but according to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry your child should see a dentist at 1 year of age or within 6 months of their first tooth erupting. We at Magic Smiles agree and will see children of any age! We strive to educate the community about the importance of oral health, especially during early childhood years.
When Should My Child Start Dental Visits?
In a study done on behalf of Delta Dental, the average age of a patient’s initial dental visit was 2.6 years of age. The most common answers for why a child under this age was not yet seen were, “The child is too young,” or “The child doesn’t have any teeth yet.”
Here are a few reasons why it is so important to schedule your child’s first dental visit within 6 months of their first tooth:
- Helps in proper chewing
- Healthy baby teeth save space for permanent teeth
- Promotes a healthy smile, which helps with a child’s self-esteem
- Aids in speech development
- Helps promote good oral health and habits
Having your child seen by a dentist after their first tooth erupts also aids in catching early signs of possible dental disease, lesions, supernumerary teeth (extra unneeded teeth), and future potential cavities or problematic teeth.
Eliminate Fears Before They Start
Another positive factor in having your child seen at a young age is to help avoid fear of the dentist. The earlier you have a child seen, not only the healthier their teeth will be, but it’s less likely that they will fear the dentist. This helps to familiarize them with the staff and procedures and helps to avoid the screams or cries when you mention “the D word” (DENTIST).
Has your child had their first dental exam? Call our office today to schedule an appointment. Happy Holidays from our Magic Smiles family to yours!