If you are a parent taking your child to the dentist for the first time, then you probably have several questions. Pediatric dentists understand the concerns of parents. Below are five things that your child’s pediatric dentist wants you to know:
Baby Teeth Are Important
Many people think that baby teeth do not require a lot of care because the child will eventually lose them. However, children need baby teeth for both chewing and speaking. Baby teeth also act as placeholders for the permanent teeth, and children who have problems with their baby teeth are likely to have problems with their permanent teeth.
Children Should Not Be Put To Sleep With a Bottle
A baby may sleep better if he or she is put to sleep with a bottle, but this is not a good idea. Putting a child to sleep with a bottle can lead to a condition called baby bottle tooth decay, which occurs when sugar from milk, juice or other sweet drinks clings to the baby’s teeth.
If the baby bottle tooth decay is severe, then the teeth may need to be extracted. To find or prevent tooth decay, regular dental visits should be made. Your local or personal dentist can provide you with more individualized, specific suggestions.
Personal Items Should Not Be Shared
Tooth decay is caused by bacteria. This bacteria can easily be transmitted from person to person through saliva. Toothbrushes, cups and eating utensils should not be shared.
Dental X-Rays Are Safe
The pediatric dentist will likely want to take an x-ray of your child’s teeth. There have been concerns raised about radiation exposure from x-rays. However, it is important to note that x-rays are very safe. Your child is only exposed to a small amount of radiation when getting an x-ray.
Sugary Foods and Beverages Should Be Limited
If your child consumes a lot of sugary foods and beverages, then he or she is more likely to develop tooth decay. Bacteria feeds on sugar. Sugary food and beverage consumption should be limited. Additionally, it is best for children to eat sugary snacks during meal time.
New parents often have a lot of questions about caring for their children’s teeth. Fortunately, pediatric dentists are available to address any concerns that you may have. Dentists want you to know that caring for baby teeth is important. They also want you to know that x-rays are safe, and personal items should not be shared. Furthermore, babies should not go to sleep with a bottle, and sugary food and beverage consumption should be limited.