How often does my child need to see the dentist?

August 19th, 2021

Parents usually wonder how often they need to take their child to the dentist. "Since they are just baby teeth that are going to fall out, we don't have to bring our child to the dentist very often right?" This isn't necessarily true! The health of baby teeth is really important to ensure that your child's adult teeth will also come in nice and healthy!

At minimum, it is recommended that your child sees a dentist at least twice a year. Remember the rules of two's - brush 2 times a day, 2 minutes each time, and visit the dentist 2 times a year!

But sometimes, your child's dentist may recommend your child to be seen more than twice a year, such as every 3 months instead of every 6 months. Here's a few reasons why:

  1. Your child may have some teeth that are starting to have cavities. These teeth do not have cavities that require any fillings yet, so your child's dentist wants to see your child more often to closely monitor those teeth! At these visits, your child's dentist can go over different ways to keep the teeth clean and to catch things that may be causing your child's cavities to get worse!
  2. Your child may have a habit that affects your child's teeth, such as thumb sucking. Prolonged thumb sucking after the age of 4 years old can cause changes in your child's jaw and how your child's teeth grow in. By seeing your child's dentist more often, they can more easily track the changes that are happening and work together with you to slowly guide your child towards stopping their habit.
  3. Some children come to the dentist very anxious due to past dental experiences or the child may have special health care needs that prevents them from feeling safe in new environments. Having visits that are more often and less far apart can allow your child to feel more comfortable with the dental environment and turn it into a safe space!

Your child's dentist and dental team are always here to answer all of your questions and provide the best care for your child!

Did you know that your child has to see the dentist before they start kindergarten?

August 5th, 2021

In the State of California, state law requires your child receive an assessment of their oral health as part of school readiness activities for kindergarten entry. You are required to check with your child's school for the appropriate forms and details that are required.

Why is this a requirement? Many California children have a lack of access to dental care. Dental disease is one of the most common reasons for school absences. Pain from toothaches makes it hard for children to concentrate and learn!

In 2006, AB 1433 was signed into law as the kindergarten dental check up requirement. This law helps schools identify the children suffering from untreated dental disease and helps parents establish a dental home for their children!

Now that summer is coming to an end and school is starting up soon, don't forget to make an appointment for your child to see the dentist! What better way to start the school year than with bright and healthy smiles!

My child's baby teeth aren't growing in at the times they are supposed to, should I be worried?

July 23rd, 2021

Baby teeth growing in! This is a big topic amongst parents of our youngest patients. "When should I expect the teeth to come in?" and "My other kid got their teeth by this time already but she's not growing any yet" are just some common things that we hear from parents!

The chart above shows you when we expect the different baby teeth to grow in. Usually by 3 years of age, your child should have all 20 baby teeth. BUT! The most important thing to remember is that every child is different! Not everyone gets their baby teeth in at the same time.

When pediatric dentists check your child's mouth, we are not going through a checklist to see if the teeth that are supposed to be there have come in. We are looking at the order that the different type of teeth come in, and we are feeling your child's gums to see if we can feel under the gums the baby teeth that haven't come yet.

If teeth grow in out of order, this may point to certain reasons such as: your child may be missing the tooth that hasn't come in yet, there may be something in the gums/bone that is preventing the tooth to come in, or your child's tooth is just taking its time to come in! Even if teeth grow in out of order, it isn't an immediate reason to worry!

Your dentists are always there to help answer any questions you may have and to help your child develop their beautiful smile!

What can I do to help my child's discomfort during teething?

May 14th, 2021

Is your child in the stage where they are starting to drool a lot, they have the urge to bite everything, and you are starting to see little teeth come in? It's an exciting time! - your child is teething! We know teething can be extremely difficult and uncomfortable for some children, and it becomes a difficult time for the parents as well. Because we know how hard it is, here are some tips to help you and your family get through the teething process:

  1. Frozen towels - Wet a soft towel and place it into your freezer until the towel is cold but NOT frozen or hard. This is the safest and best option to have your child chew on! The towel is soft so that there is no harm to your child's mouth and the cold will help relieve their discomfort!
  2. Soft teething toys - Any teething toy that is soft in nature is great, such as the toys that you can throw into the freezer. Any toy works as long as it is soft. You want to avoid any hard plastic toys because they can easily break off and create a choking hazard for your child.
  3. Avoid teething medications - You want to avoid giving your child medications that are specifically for teething. The medications made for teething may not be at a healthy and safe level for your child. Avoid especially any topical ointments with anesthetic since it may not be safe for your child, such as Orajel. If needed, you can give your child Children's Tylenol to help with any fevers that come with teething.

Your dental family is always here to support you with any questions you may need! If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to ask!

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