Parents often have questions and concerns about their child’s oral health. Dr. Samuel Yee DDS has provided answers to some common questions on this page. If you have further questions or concerns, please feel free to contact our office at 949-831-3111. We will be happy to answer your questions and help you schedule your child’s appointment with our dentist in Aliso Viejo, California.
Why see a pediatric dentist?
Pediatric dentists are specially trained to meet the dental needs of infants, toddlers, school-age children, and adolescents. They complete 2-3 years of additional training following dental school, including studying child psychology, to enable them to communicate with children in an effective, gentle, and non-threatening manner. Pediatric dentists monitor your child’s oral growth and development to ensure that their teeth and gums remain healthy.
Pediatric dentistry focuses in preventing dental problems, detecting and treating oral issues early, and helping children learn and put into practice good oral hygiene habits as early as possible.
Does your child grind his or her teeth at night?
Bruxism, or teeth grinding is common for both children and adults. Nighttime teeth grinding among children may occur due to a wide range of psychological physiological or physical factors, including jaw misalignment, stress, traumatic brain injury, and as a side effect of medications. This grinding can cause serious problems, including headaches, injured teeth and gums, muscle aches, and tooth sensitivity.
Bruxism spontaneous ceases in the majority of children by age 13. In the meantime, our dentist will monitor your child’s teeth and provide treatments if needed. Treatments include altering the biting surface of the teeth (usually with crowns), night guards or bite splints, and occlusal treatment. If bruxism seems to be the result of stress, we may recommend relaxation classes, muscle relaxants, special exercises, or professional therapy.
How often should children have dental checkups?
Children should have regular dental checkups in which their teeth and gums are examined and cleaned every six months after their first tooth emerges. We may schedule additional appointments for children who are unusually susceptible to tooth decay or who show signs of needing early orthodontic treatment.
What is the best toothpaste for my child?
Use an ADA-approved toothpaste for children when brushing your child’s teeth. Select fluoride-free toothpaste for the first few years. In your child’s third year, begin choosing an ADA-approved toothpaste containing fluoride. Use only a pea-sized amount of toothpaste, and encourage the child to spit after you have brushed.
When should children have their first dental visit?
The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that your child should receive an initial “well-baby” checkup with a pediatric dentist about six months after their first tooth erupts, or no later than their first birthday.
When will my baby start getting teeth?
Your baby’s primary teeth should begin erupting between the ages of six and ten months. Most children have a complete set of baby teeth by about 33 months.
Why are primary teeth important?
Primary teeth are important for a number of different reasons, including:
- Speech production and development
- Eating and nutrition
- Preparing your mouth for permanent teeth
- Promoting jaw development
- Maintaining good oral health