Pop Quiz: at what age should your child have his or her first dental exam? Answer: BEFORE the first tooth erupts (between the ages of 6 months and 1 year). Surprised? You aren’t alone. Many children don’t have their first dental exam until they are ready for kindergarten. Sadly, dental decay is the number one chronic childhood disease in America and it is completely preventable.
A 2009 study of California school children reported an estimated 874,000 days are missed due to dental issues. Children living with dental pain struggle to pay attention in class and learn, they have trouble eating, sleeping and may even become self-conscious about their appearance.
However, it’s never too late to get your child a checkup! Not only do we perform the customary visual exam, we also use technology to identify hidden decay. Dental decay can hide between your child’s teeth and in the pits and fissures on the top surface of the back teeth. Detection equipment that uses either a laser or fiber optics can easily and painlessly find caries. There is also a simple, bacterial plaque oral swab test that can tell us if your child is infected and is at risk for developing future decay.
Regular checkups and good home habits are the key to protecting your child’s oral health. Call today to make your child an appointment and lay down a foundation for a lifetime of good health.