Good Dental Health Starts Early
Young children and the dentist may not be two things that you would normally connect, but done properly, children can get very comfortable with trips to the dentist at an early age. In fact, Dr. Jim Fulmer, recommends bringing children for their first cleaning right after their first birthday. While that may seem young, as he explains, it helps small children get used to coming to the dentist, sitting in the chair, and having someone look at their teeth. As they get older, they view the dental staff as partners in keeping their teeth clean and cavity-free.
Without good dental hygiene, toddlers can develop problems with baby teeth that linger into their teen years and beyond. According to www.healthychildren.org, the number one dental problem among preschoolers is tooth decay. Reading the statistics is an urgent reminder of how important it is to see a dentist for regular check-ups:
- One out of 10 two- year-olds already have one or more cavities
- By age three, 28% of children have one or more cavities
- By age five, nearly 50% of children have one or more cavities
Children generally need assistance brushing their teeth until the age of six. Parents can get them off to a good start by helping with brushing twice a day and flossing every day.
Proper nutrition is also important. Eating the right foods and avoiding sugary snacks and soda can play a big role in good dental health-for patients of any age!