Infant dentistry gives you the ability to better care for your baby’s oral health needs. While their baby teeth aren’t a permanent fixture, they are still vital for early oral health. Early age pediatric dentistry can also help determine other key issues that may arise during your infant’s development.
Many benefits stem from taking your child to a dentist specializing in infant dentistry. One such benefit is that they get their dental records at an extremely early age, which will help them with their treatment plans for years to come.
Once you find a pediatric dentist for your infant, you can typically remain with the same pediatric dentist well into your child’s late teen years. This will mean your child is getting optimal care during all the stages of their development. This will help to avoid easily preventable dental health issues.
At what age should I take my baby to the dentist?
At Red Rock Kids Dental, we get this question a lot. The best age to find a pediatric dentist is six months after their teeth start to come in. Once your infant starts teething, that is the best time to make an appointment to see an infant dentist.
The importance of getting your baby to the dentist early is ensuring proper care of their oral health. The best way to treat a dental issue is through preventative care. If parents are able to properly care for their baby’s teeth early, it will ensure their oral health journey stays on a positive track.
Infant dental services
There are a few procedures that your infant dentist can inform you of, which can help address potential infant dentistry concerns proactively. One of the main challenges to navigate is general teething. Teething is a big deal for both parents and their babies. It is an uncomfortable, new experience that your child has never felt before, so knowing the proper ways to care for their new teeth is helpful.
Proper mouth cleaning for your baby is something the dentist can do for you, as well as help educate you as a parent. This will ensure that your baby has a clean mouth, one that you learn how to care for properly. Proper cleaning will help ensure that your child does not experience severe gum issues.
Thumb and pacifier sucking habits are other major issues that arise in younger patients. While this can be an area of concern, it is best to let the dentist know if you believe your child has an excessive habit. The dentist can determine whether habits need to be stopped immediately, or if there is room for weaning.
Checking for tooth decay caused by baby bottles is another task an infant dentist can perform. Even though your baby might not be eating a lot of solid foods, their teeth are still at risk of decay. One common issue is baby bottle tooth decay, which happens most commonly from baby bottles but is a term generally used for infants.
What to expect
Your baby’s first dental visit isn’t always smooth sailing. At the same time, we see some children have no issue with their pediatric dentist. Still, a majority of infants don’t love the feeling of a stranger poking around their mouth.
Your presence with your child can help alleviate any of their anxieties and frustrations. Fortunately, we try to make the first dental visit as quick as possible for your infant. It is a new experience for them, and if it is your first baby it might be a new experience for you as well.
Proper care after your infant’s dental visit
The initial visit is about your baby getting comfortable at the dentist and seeing if there are any immediate issues that need to be taken care of. Normally, there are no dental procedures that happen during your infant’s initial check-up. If there are, it would only be for something severe that could not wait until a further date.
Gum massages during teething are a valuable tool that will help alleviate pain for your child. Your dental health professional can show you the best way to massage your infant’s gums, which will make it far easier for you to do the same at home.
Great oral hygiene is largely reliant on the way we brush our teeth. Since you will be in charge of brushing your infant’s teeth, it is important you do it correctly. Using a soft bristle toothbrush for babies is always recommended.
Prevent decay by avoiding bottle time right before your infant’s nap time. If you want to ensure proper care of your child’s teeth, it might be worthwhile to avoid providing a bottle right before nap time. You could always plan around this by gently brushing their teeth after they finish their bottle, but some time before a nap.
Even more help
Luckily, any questions that you have about your infant’s dental needs can be answered by their dentist. It is important to schedule a follow-up appointment after the first initial appointment as well, to ensure your infant continues to receive high-quality dental care.
At Red Rock Kids Dental, we specialize in infant dentistry, and we would love to be your child’s dentist. If you have any questions for us, please let us know and give us a call at 702-242-2436 or schedule an appointment today!