For many people, going to the dentist is an activity they’d much rather skip. But regular dental visits are critical, especially for young children. And because of all of the popular misconceptions about oral health that continue to persist, many parents are misinformed about how important it is to have their children visit a dental pediatrician from an early age. Below, we’ll take a closer look at the truth behind these common dental health myths, and why it’s so necessary to find an experienced dentist for kids from the start.
MYTH: We don’t need to worry about finding a kids dentist until my child starts school
Tooth Truth: Children should start visiting a dental pediatrician at age one, or by the time their first tooth emerges. Even toddlers can develop cavities, and by putting off the first dental visit, your child is at-risk for developing oral hygiene issues. Preventative care is generally much more effective; by going to the dentist early on, they can stop problems before they start and make going to the dentist fun, rather than scary.
MYTH: Limiting my child’s sugar intake will prevent cavities
Tooth Truth: While the combination of too much sugar consumption and poor oral hygiene can eventually lead to cavities, sugar isn’t actually what causes them. Oral bacteria feeds on all kinds of carbohydrates, including sugar. The acids produced by these bacteria are what leads to cavity development. While kids shouldn’t have too much sugar in general, there are a lot of foods that are essential to growth that could end up causing cavities without proper dental care. Ultimately, diet does not matter nearly as much as hygiene and regular dental visits.
MYTH: My child can handle brushing their own teeth
Tooth Truth: While it’s great if you can teach your child the proper way to brush their teeth from a young age, they may not be doing as good a job as you think. Many times, young kids miss the hard-to-reach spots, leaving them vulnerable to tooth problems. Some parents like to let their kids tackle a brushing first and then follow it up with a more thorough brushing to teach them where they need to concentrate on. Your dental pediatrician can also give both you and your child tips on how to brush and floss better.
MYTH: My child will lose their baby teeth anyway, so it’s okay to ignore early cavities
Tooth Truth: No matter when they occur, cavities can cause a lot of pain. In addition, the health of your child’s baby teeth can actually impact how healthy their permanent teeth will be. An infected baby tooth could spread to the adult tooth underneath, as well as other parts of your child’s mouth and body. If you notice your child seems to be suffering from oral pain, you should take them to your dental pediatrician right away — even if they haven’t started losing their baby teeth yet.
For children of all ages, regular pediatric dental care is a must. To schedule an appointment with your childs first dentist, contact Pediatric Dental Care today.