Why starting good dental care from an early age is so important.
A question that we hear quite frequently at the Confidental Clinic is all about when parents should first take their child to see a dentist. There is no firm and fixed answer to this question, but we tend to agree with the guidelines of bringing them at around one year old. This early age may raise a few eyebrows, but the argument for doing so is logical. The feeling is that bringing children at this early age will allow them to become accustomed to the dental clinic environment with all of its smells, sounds and sights.
Young babies will easily adapt to new environments, whereas, a child who is a little older may be aware that the family dentist is not always a fun place to be and may also have heard some misguided ‘horror stories’ from other children. This can make encouraging a child to go to the dentist much more difficult and could, potentially, lead to long term oral health problems over time.
From a very young age, parents should clean a baby’s gums with a dampened, clean piece of material. This will help to keep their gums healthy and free from small pieces of food. You can continue this method when the baby teeth start to show, until such a time that a soft toothbrush can be introduced. Our child friendly dentists are always happy to see very young patients, and it is very rare, at around one year old, that there will need to be any dental issues of much concern. We may advise parents how to improve the way they clean their child’s teeth, but the chances of the need for any treatment is very minimal indeed.
Very young children
Hopefully, with a healthy diet and good home oral health care, children will need relatively little treatment as they get a little older. Where they do, you can be sure that they will be in good hands at the Confidental Clinic in Purley. As they start to become more aware of the world and take an interest in things, this is a good time to introduce them to our local dental hygienist.
Using child friendly material, our hygienist will be able to teach your children the importance of looking after their teeth and gums in a way that parents may not be able to. This will hopefully also encourage them to take care of their teeth, reducing their sugar intake and brushing more efficiently. We do encourage parents to supervise brushing until they are satisfied that their child will do so themselves conscientiously.
As our children enter their late childhood, and especially in the teenage years, our parental influence can sometimes wane a little. Hopefully, the importance of good dental care will be accepted by then, but, where corrective dental treatment is required, the Confidental Clinic will be there for your teenager’s needs.
To start your child on the path to good oral health, or to book an appointment for yourself, please call our Purley family dental practice on 020 8660 8923.