What Every Parent Should Know About Their Child’s Dental Care

From the eruption of that first baby tooth to that of that final permanent tooth, your child’s mouth undergoes as much change throughout childhood as the rest of their body. Ensuring that your child is on the road to optimal oral health, vigilant oversight of these transitions is key.

At Silicon Valley Dental Associates, our top-rated dental professionals, believe that a healthy smile starts as soon as your child’s first tooth peeks through. From there, the journey to adulthood starts in earnest, and we provide comprehensive pediatric dental care each step of the way.

In celebration of National Children's Dental Health Month, we offer the following overview of what every parent should know about children’s’ dental health.

Baby teeth serve an essential role

Just because those adorable little teeth will eventually be replaced, doesn’t mean these 20 starter teeth aren’t important. They serve an important role, among them: teaching your child how to chew and speak properly. 

Additionally, baby teeth pave the way for secondary teeth, acting as placeholders while the stronger teeth develop underneath. This is why The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry and the American Dental Association recommends scheduling a child's first dental exam after the first tooth erupts and no later than the first birthday.

This first visit serves several functions:

Seal the deal

The next transition begins about the age of six, as adult teeth start to erupt, including molars in the back. As these teeth begin to arrive, we highly recommend applying some sealant to prevent decay.

Early molars are soft and are difficult for children to clean properly. Molars have lots of nooks and crannies where bacteria can take up residence. A sealant offers a barrier against bacteria. 

This simple step is extremely effective in staving off cavities due to tooth decay.

Did you know dental cavities are the most common disease in children and adults worldwide? Fluoride is one of the best and safest ways we can prevent cavities for children and adults alike. 

Fluoride protection

Fluoride varnish can help prevent tooth decay, slow it down, or stop it from worsening. Fluoride varnish is made with fluoride, a mineral that strengthens tooth enamel (outer coating on teeth). Small amounts of fluoride are found in many kinds of toothpaste, rinses, and city water sources. However, the fluoride treatments offered in our dental office are significantly more concentrated. The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends a professional fluoride treatment at your dentist’s office every 3, 6, or 12 months, depending on your oral health.

Life Lessons

We work with your child on providing the best care for their teeth, including careful instruction and demonstration, on home hygiene. This includes brushing, flossing, and rinsing. 

Between the ages of 7 and 9, we perform an orthodontic evaluation to determine whether making some adjustments to the alignment of their teeth would be beneficial.

Healthy gums and teeth go beyond an appealing smile. They are important to your child's overall health. To learn more about our pediatric dental services and your entire family’s oral healthcare needs, make an appointment for a consultation at our office in Sunnyvale, California. Book an appointment online or call our office today.

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