When it comes to caring for a child’s teeth, pediatric dentistry offices are an excellent resource. This section of the dental field focuses on providing dental services for children. Pediatric dentists are trained on the common problems among infants, children and teenagers. They are the go-to dental professional when parents have questions or concerns about their…
How Often Your Child Should Visit a Dentist for Kids
According to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, parents should take their children to visit a dentist for kids twice yearly. The biannual visits allow the dentist to monitor the child’s dental development, assess changes in the oral cavity, and offer recommendations for the child’s oral health. However, it is not always as simple as that, since the child may need dental checkup ahead of the regular date. So, how often should your child visit the dentist for appointments?
Children and dental appointments
Usually, the dentist for kids will determine the frequency of a child’s dental checkup after considering some factors, including the risk of dental cavities, the number of cavity cases in the past, and the health risks associated with having dental decay (e.g. if the child has a health condition such as heart disease or diabetes). To accurately assess the child’s risk of cavities, the dentist for kids will evaluate the child’s diet, level of oral hygiene practices, and the amount of fluoride the child receives.
Whether the child is a toddler, child, or adolescent, the dentist will give the parents the results of the cavity risk assessment. A child who has minimal risk of developing cavities may only need one dental checkup per year until they are older. Children at high risk may need to visit as often as four times per year. After the child grows older, the dentist for kids will likely recommend a dental checkup every six months. During those visits, the dental team will provide suggestions on proper brushing, flossing, and diet. The exams also allow the dentist for kids to detect cavities early, preventing the need for costly dental procedures.
Here is why regular checkup is important
It is a fact that decay or cavities progress faster in baby teeth because the enamel is thinner. During the child’s appointment, the dentist for kids also performs essential tasks, such as checking that the teeth are erupting as at when due and in the right position. Also, the information parents learn from the dentist is crucial for the child’s oral development. It is vital that parents know how to keep their children’s teeth free of cavities since it is a routine that will probably stay with the child until adulthood.
Regular visits teach the children the importance of dental appointments and help them to cultivate good dental habits as well. It familiarizes them with the way dental appointments work and enables them to create a lasting relationship with the dentist. This is important, in case of future dental procedures.
Now, many parents may not be open to more than three visits to the dentist for kids yearly. Usually, the decision on how often a child’s dental checkups should be lies with the dentist, the parent, and the child. It is common for the dentist, as the expert to make a recommendation, but the parent and the patient should be able to ask questions if they do not understand the reason. If anything happens, such as a dental emergency, parents can always book an appointment ahead of their due date.
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