Bringing your child to the dentist can be a scary idea for anyone to consider. We all have our fears of the dentist, and to think of our little ones going through something similar and not being able to understand the benefits, is something even more terrifying. Your child going to the dentist is something that has to happen no matter what our fears are, but when do you need to bring your child to the dentist? Once you find a pediatric dentist near you, it’s important that you routinely take your child.
When to take your child to the dentist:
Before they turn 2:
It’s important to take your child to the dentist before their first birthday. It is at this point that they have transitioned from the bottle to solid foods. This initial visit allows the dentist to get an overall feel for how your child’s teeth and gums are starting to develop, as well as keeping tabs on how a pacifier or thumb sucking can be affecting their mouth development.
Every 6 months:
Parents can expect to take their kids to the dentist every six months for routine checkups. These checkups can include cleanings, looking for cavities, and overall development of the teeth. From ages six to twelve, it’s all about prevention and starting a good routine for lifelong health.
When they are in pain:
If your child is experiencing any sort of pain in their mouth, teeth, gums or jaw, it is important to make a trip to a dentist near you to make sure everything is okay in there. As toddlers, teething is rough, and overall oral development is different for everyone.
At these visits, your pediatric dentist will perform a routine procedure, checking your child’s gums, jaw, bite, teeth, potential decay, how their teeth are affecting their speech and more. The pediatric dentist will also perform a cleaning and give you recommendations for home care.
While you can see the dentist anytime you feel is best for your child, they should see the dentist twice a year until they are at least seven. It is helpful to remember that states are required to provide dental benefits to children covered under Medicaid. As Medicaid dentists, they are required to provide services for maintenance of dental health, restoration of teeth and relief from any pain. While the states determine whether or not they are offering Medicaid, make sure you do your research to find if there is a Medicaid dentist near you.