Dental Check-ups for Infants and Children
The condition of a child’s teeth can change fairly rapidly. Even if your child’s teeth were evaluated as healthy just six months prior, changes in diet, sleep, or oral habits (thumb sucking, for example) can make the teeth more vulnerable to decay or misalignment. Therefore, the American Academy of Pediatric Dentists (AAPD) advises parents to make a least two dental appointments per year for children. Your child's very first dental appointment may be scheduled approximately six months after the first tooth emerges, depending on his/her readiness.
These two yearly visits are very important, even if your child has perfectly healthy teeth. The visits allow Dr. Day to monitor new developments in your child’s mouth and evaluate changes in the condition of teeth and gums. It is also an opportunity for a health screening, since many other health issues first present themselves in the mouth.
Dr. Day and his team may need to see some children more than twice per year, especially those who are particularly susceptible to tooth decay or who show early signs of orthodontic problems.
What happens during my child's dental check-up?
Your child will receive a thorough dental cleaning at each visit, which is performed by one of our registered dental hygienists, who have many years of experience working with children and who strive for a positive, fun experience for your child! Your child will also receive a visual examination of the teeth, gums, tongue, and mouth by Dr. Day and his team. A topical fluoride gel or varnish may be recommended and is applied to teeth after the cleaning. Topical fluoride remineralizes the teeth and helps prevent mineral loss, which protects the tooth enamel. Finally, Dr. Day may apply dental sealants to the child’s back teeth (molars). This impenetrable liquid plastic substance is brushed onto the molars to seal out harmful debris, bacteria, and acid.
Dental X-rays are often the only way to identify cavities in baby teeth. Although your child may not be feeling any tooth pain, if the cavities are not treated, they can rapidly turn into large cavities and tooth decay, which may result in tooth loss and childhood periodontal disease.
If you have questions or concerns your child’s dental check-up, please contact our office at 517-393-8500.
Day Family Dental
Dr. Nathan Day, DMD • Dentist • Lansing, MI