According to the American Dental Academy, you should take your child to see a dentist as soon as his or her first tooth appears or no later than their first birthday. There are several reasons to take young children to a family dentist including:
– Early dental visits prepare your child for general dentistry procedures, thus reducing instances of fear as they age
– Twice-yearly visits to the dentist are crucial for ensuring proper tooth development
– Early childhood dental visits can detect potential problems such as tooth decay
– As your child ages, these visits will include instructions in proper at-home tooth care
– A dentist familiar with your child’s teeth and oral development can better spot early signs of malocclusion and other potential problems
While many of these benefits come as your child ages, helping your child understand that the dentist’s office is a safe place is by far the most pressing reason to have them see a dentist early on. Dental phobia is a serious issue that affects millions of Americans. These fears are often the result of early experiences at the dentist’s office and can ultimately prohibit your child from seeking necessary dental care. Working closely with an experienced, compassionate family dentist, you can help ingrain good habits in your child, and work to make sure they continue to feel comfortable well into the future.