Children should have all their teeth by the age of 2 ½. At around 6 years old the child’s permanent back teeth should appear – with the front teeth starting to come out between 6 and 7 years old. Normally the lower front baby teeth are lost first, with the upper front teeth a short while after that. By the age of 13, your child should only have permanent teeth, apart for the wisdom teeth which will only erupt between ages18 to 25.
Children can become fearful of dentists if parents wait until a dental problem arises before the child is taken for a dental examination. The reason for this is that drilling or tooth extractions might have to be done during the very first visit then, risking the child becoming fearful of future visits to the dentist.
Although children differ, we suggest that you take your child for a first dental exam at about 2 years of age. This visit will be geared more at familiarizing the child with the dentist and dental office, so we will make special effort to make it a pleasant experience. However, we will do a quick check with a dental mirror and probe and examine the child’s teeth and gums, and also check if he or she needs fluoride treatment for cavity protection. If all goes well and fluoride is needed, we will administer a topical fluoride and polish the child’s teeth.
Preventative care is very important when it comes to children. At our practice we use top quality dental sealant technology to protect your child’s teeth. Dental sealants are bonded to the chewing surface of the child’s back teeth, as these teeth are usually prone to decay.
We will also discuss the adverse effects of thumb sucking in children with you if this is habit with your child. We might take diagnostic x-rays, but we will not do extractions or fillings during the first visit, so as to not make the child fearful of visits to the dentist.
Once the exam is over, we will also provide you and your child with some advice on caring for the child’s teeth and gums, and suggest a schedule for regular future visits. As a rule kids should consult a dentist twice yearly, in order to diagnose decay or other problems at an early age.
Teenagers should take good care of their teeth and gums as they should ideally keep their teeth for the rest of their lives! While teens aren’t adults yet, they also don’t want to be treated like kids anymore. We will treat your teenager with respect, and we will set high standards for them regarding their oral hygiene. Our goal is for them to want to take care of their teeth, and to not dread their bi-promo
It should be pressed upon teenagers that they are to brush and floss their teeth twice a day, drink lots of water and maintain a healthy diet. Drinks like soda, sports drinks and flavored water should be avoided. Instead, they could be encouraged to eat nuts, cheeses, chicken or other meat, and to drink milk. These foods provide calcium and phosphorous that re-mineralize teeth and protect tooth enamel. Firm and crunchy fruits like pears and apples as well as vegetables are also good for ones teeth as they have high water content. Good water content stimulates saliva flow, which aids in the prevention of tooth decay by washing away acid and food particles in the mouth.
Children who play sports should be encouraged to wear mouth guards to protect their teeth from getting chipped, broken or knocked out while playing sports, and those who grind their teeth at night should discuss the possibility of obtaining a night mouth guard.