A Child’s First Dental Visit
At Kane and Kerper Family and Cosmetic Dentistry in Oxnard, we recommend that the first dental visit should be after your child’s third birthday. The first visit often lasts less than 30 minutes and usually involves a basic check-up with very little treatment.
Parents may be requested to hold the child during the examination if the child is afraid, or they may be asked to wait in the reception area to allow the dentist to develop a relationship of trust and comfort with the child.
Our dentists in Oxnard are trained to deal with children both compassionately and with care, ensuring the children are not overwhelmed by the process. During the examination, we gently examine the gums and teeth of your child and may take X-rays to diagnose any possible decay as well. The dentist may also apply topical fluoride after a gentle cleaning to prevent decay.
Throughout the procedure, our team of experts guides parents to help their children achieve optimal dental health.
How to Help Your Child Understand Dental Care?
Parents often approach Kane and Kerper dentists in Oxnard for guidance when it comes to teaching their children about the importance of dental visits and preventing them from being scared or overwhelmed. We suggest parents prepare their child for a dental visit just as they prepare them for a first day at school or their first haircut.
Here are some tips that may help parents:
- Bring your child to a dental care clinic for a tour to familiarize them with the setting.
- Read books about dentists and how they help people take care of their teeth.
- Play the “pretend play game” in which you review what the dentist will do on the first visit.
- Explain to your child the importance of dental care.
Help your children understand how the dentist will:
- Examine their teeth and gums.
- Clean their teeth.
- Find problems in their teeth or gums (if there are any).
- Teach them about dental care.
Preventive oral care can ensure that your child does not experience tooth decay or staining and smile their way into adulthood. At Kane and Kerper Family and Cosmetic Dentistry, we are equipped with the knowledge and understanding needed during preventive pediatric care.
At Kane and Kerper Family and Cosmetic Dentistry in Oxnard, our state-of-the-art dental sealant technology can keep tooth decay at bay. Dental sealants are thin plastic coatings bonded to the biting surface of decay-prone teeth. They protect the molars of the child and prevent them from decaying or becoming covered with plaque.
Sugary foods, sweet candies, and chocolates are pleasures of childhood that no parent wants to deprive their child of. But high sugar foods and inadequate brushing can lead to cavities.
Every time we eat, an acidic reaction takes place in our mouths. This reaction allows bacteria to digest sugar, and it can take up to 20 minutes for this reaction to do its job.
Children who take more time to chew their food are at a higher risk of cavities as the food residue stays in the mouth for a longer time, increasing the duration of the acidic environment in our mouth, which eventually causes cavities.
Moreover, a sugary and high-carbohydrate diet causes the saliva in our mouth to become thicker, which also increases acid-producing bacteria in the mouth, leading to cavities.
Here are a few tips that can help parents prevent cavity development in children:
- Limit snacks and high-carb foods.
- Encourage rinsing after food.
- Encourage regular brushing and flossing.
- Avoid giving soft drinks to your child.
- Avoid giving sticky foods to your child.
- Choose nutritious and low-carb snacks that are easy to chew and digest.
Lower incisors are the first baby teeth that come through when the child is 6-8 months old. Upper incisors follow a month or two later. The rest of the teeth appear periodically over the course of 2 years.
By the time the toddler is 2 ½ years old, they should ideally have 20 teeth. Permanent teeth start erupting between the age of 5 and 6.
Taking care of baby teeth is important as they set the ground for permanent teeth. Baby teeth are also important for speech, chewing, and biting; therefore, it is significant to maintain good daily hygiene and a healthy diet for your child.
Kane and Kerper’s doctors in Oxnard are always available to guide parents about their children’s best oral health practices. Our preventive dentistry is safe, gentle, and long-lasting.