Your child’s baby teeth are a crucial part of the smile he or she will develop—they help to guide the permanent teeth into their proper places, then fall out to make way for them. As your child’s permanent teeth grow, it’s essential to get dental checkups. Getting checkups throughout your child’s life is important, as their teeth need to last them for life! Why else should your child receive dental checkups as their permanent teeth come in?
Tooth Decay Is Prevalent Among Children
Dentists today are seeing an increase in tooth decay among children—even among infants and toddlers. Many times the symptoms of tooth decay aren’t apparent until it’s too late. If your child needs to have a baby tooth pulled before they’re ready to lose that tooth, this could affect how his or her permanent teeth come in.
When you get regular checkups with your dentist, you can help your child to prevent tooth decay as well as notice the signs before it becomes widespread. Dentists also encourage healthy oral habits among children, such as brushing and flossing in addition to not eating too many sweets!
Does Your Child Need Braces?
Orthodontic work might be closer in your child’s future than you think. Many children need two-phase orthodontic treatment, in which the first set of braces is applied while your child still has most of his or her baby teeth. A second set of braces is applied when your child is older to finalize the treatment.
Your dentist can take x-rays of your child’s teeth and determine if they need to see an orthodontist. Often problems such as bites, overcrowding, and crooked teeth can be fixed faster and easier if addressed early in the child’s life, especially if the problem is complex. Braces can also help your child’s teeth to be straight and even, therefore boosting their self-confidence!
Wisdom Teeth Impaction
As your child grows, his or her wisdom teeth will begin to develop and push through their gums. This typically happens around age 17, but could happen much earlier for some children. Girls tend to get their wisdom teeth in before boys, so getting checkups is crucial to see where your child’s wisdom teeth are at.
If your child has had orthodontic corrective work, wisdom teeth can push the teeth into incorrect positions if there’s not enough room for them to come through. This is also called wisdom teeth impaction. When wisdom teeth are impacted, they may also be coming in at odd angles or not even fully come through at all. Wisdom teeth impaction almost always require that they be removed before they cause any damage.
Dentists do more than just clean your children’s teeth during checkups. They examine your child’s mouth for signs of tooth decay or gum disease. They can spot any corrective orthodontic treatment needed early. They can also see if your child’s wisdom teeth are coming in and if they’ll need to be removed. Schedule a checkup for your child at the dentist office—great smiles start with the best care!