When taking children to the dentist, you have the opportunity to help them develop a rapport with a dentist they can trust and build a healthy oral hygiene routine. Dentists who focus on working with children are trained to lower anxiety and promote a positive dental experience, which can lead to better dental care throughout their lives.
Children’s dentists also understand the importance of parental education and the role parents play in proper oral hygiene. These dentists encourage parents to be role models, setting a good example of how to care and maintain oral health.
Children should start receiving in-home oral health care as soon as they’re born. After feedings, use your finger or a soft washcloth to gently wipe the gums and tongue. This removes traces of milk or formula and gets your child accustomed to mouth cleanings.
Once a tooth is present, switch to a small, soft toothbrush and gently brush the tooth, gums, and tongue. At this stage, Dr. Jacinto recommends only using water on the brush. Once a few teeth are present, you can introduce a non-fluoride toothpaste, using only a pea-sized amount twice a day.
An initial dentist appointment should be scheduled by the child’s first birthday, or within six months of their first tooth. During this appointment, Dr. Jacinto may examine your child’s mouth, gums, teeth, and jaw, monitoring their growth and development. In most cases, routine cleaning is scheduled every six months for preventive care.
If you’re looking for a dentist with a special interest in children’s dentistry, contact Dr. Jacinto. You can even schedule your appointment online.