Early Dental Care

At Pure Smiles, we are committed to providing the best pediatric dental care available in Findlay, OH. Your child’s baby teeth are just as important as adult teeth. If properly taken care of, your child will have a solid foundation for a lifetime of healthy teeth. If you don’t know where to start in your child’s dental care, we are here to help! To set your child up for healthy teeth, we are happy to offer dental decisions that will keep your child smiling for years to come.

Teething

You will usually see your child’s first tooth sometime between six and twelve months old. Your child’s gum can be irritable and tender until three years of age. You can sooth these tender gums by gently rubbing the gums with a clean finger, a cold, wet cloth or the back of a cold spoon. Teething rings can also do the job. 

During the early times of teething, you will want to monitor those baby teeth for early signs of baby bottle decay. Carefully examine the new teeth every couple of weeks for dull spots or lines. You will be wanting to look on the inside or the tongue side for spots that are whiter than the tooth surface. 

How to Prevent Baby Bottle Tooth Decay

Baby bottle tooth decay is caused by sugar in the liquid mixing with the bacteria in dental plaque and forming acids that attack the enamel on the tooth. When children drink liquids containing sugar, there are acids that will attack the teeth for up to 20 minutes. If the child is awake during this time, their saliva will carry the acids away. However, while they are sleeping, the saliva flow is significantly reduced. This allows liquids such as the acid to pool around the teeth of the child for long periods of time, allowing the teeth to be covered in acids.

It is possible to minimize or even totally prevent baby bottle tooth decay by keeping bottles from infants that are sleeping. If your child absolutely must have a bottle to fall asleep, give them a bottle filled with water or substitute with a pacifier.

Baby Teeth

A child’s temporary teeth play a vital role in the development of their dental health. A child cannot chew properly or speak clearly without their teeth. These teeth also play a central role in the development of the jaw and in guiding the permanent teeth to the proper place upon their development around the age of six. 

If a child loses a baby tooth prematurely, this can cause problems when the permanent teeth are ready to come in. The dentist may be required to place a space maintainer in order to keep that spot open for permanent teeth. If no space maintainer is placed, the emerging permanent teeth can begin moving toward the empty space so that the permanent teeth do not come in straight. 

It is important for your child to build good habits in caring for their primary teeth so that they are ready to take good care of their permanent teeth. Children also need regular dental checkups and cleanings because they are also vulnerable to plaque build up in the same way that adults are.

Tooth Eruption

An infant’s teeth begin to form before they are even born. Their first teeth can emerge through the gums as early as four months old. The lower central incisors come first followed by the upper central incisors. The rest of the baby teeth are typically in place by the age of three. Permanent teeth begin to push through about the age of six. The permanent teeth begin with the molars and then move on to the lower central incisors. The permanent teeth will continue to come in until approximately the age of 21. Adults will have a total of 28 permanent teeth. Once the wisdom teeth come in, they will have a total of 32 teeth.

A Child’s First Dental Visit

We recommend that your child make their first trip to our office somewhere near their first birthday. A crucial first step is getting your child acquainted and comfortable with the dentist and the office staff. We invest the additional time and effort necessary to build trust and comfort for your child during their first visit.

Good Diet & Healthy Teeth

An important aspect of good oral health is eating a well-balanced and healthy diet. You can help your child avoid tooth decay and other dental issues by feeding them a good variety from the five main food groups. The health of children’s teeth is promoted by healthy foods such as cheeses, low-fat yogurt, and vegetables.

If you are looking for a pediatric dentist in the Findlay, OH area, you have come to the right place! To schedule an appointment for your child, contact our office today! We look forward to helping your child on their smile journey!