When to take your children to the dentist

Keeping your teeth in good condition is not something reserved just for adults, and neither should trips to the dentist.

Maintaining a good oral health routine is just as important for young children as it is for adults, as although milk teeth eventually fall out, dental health in later life can be determined by oral hygiene at a young age.

The current alarmingly high rates of tooth decay in young children is concerning to dentists, as this can mean such problems persisting throughout childhood and into adulthood. The longer the problems are allowed to continue, the harder it is to undo or fix any damage. Consequently, it is recommended that children begin going for regular check-ups at the dentist as early as possible, as well as being instilled with an awareness of how important oral health is.

Expert opinion is that all children should have seen a dentist by the age of two to three, though many children have reportedly never been taken to see a dentist, when it is often too late if problems have started.

The first trip to the dentist need only be short, with very little treatment involved. The main aim of the visit should be to get the child used to the environment of the dentist, so that they will feel relaxed and calm for future visits. Often, the dentist can seem like a scary place, despite the many measures dental surgeries have in place nowadays, so reassuring children that there is nothing to be afraid of early on will mean there is no reluctance to visit the dentist as an adult. At the first check-up, dentists can look at and address any issues or concerns there may be with your child’s teeth, and how to overcome these and continue caring for their teeth in the future.

They will also show you how to brush a child’s teeth properly, a skill which should be encouraged. The practise of going to the dentist should be backed up with learning about good oral health and how to maintain a healthy routine. By the age of around seven to eight, your child should be able to brush their teeth alone, but supervision may be required. Allow children to have a go at brushing their own teeth from a young age if they want to; just ensure you then properly brush the teeth after.

This dental health routine, along with visiting the dentist often enough and keeping a healthy diet, will mean your child has strong teeth that will continue into the future. Dental Care Partnership puts a focus on tending to the teeth of all the family – to book your appointment, call us on 0121 354 1922 to speak to a member of our friendly staff.