Is it important for your child to have a kid’s dental cleaning every six months? Absolutely. The importance of pediatric dental cleanings expands far beyond just having a brighter, fresher smile. These visits are essential for helping your child enjoy healthy teeth well into adulthood.
What Happens at a Kid’s Dental Cleaning? What Does it Include?
A Dental Cleaning—The actual cleaning portion of your child’s checkup is what most people think about most. During this process, our team will gently clean away plaque, make note of areas that need a little extra attention, and polish away surface stains on your child’s enamel. Smaller children might not want to sit still for a cleaning, so we’ll take things at your child’s pace and work from there.
An Exam—Before or after the cleaning, our kid’s dentists will evaluate your child’s teeth and gums. We’ll want to check for things like cavities, impacted teeth, spacing issues, and even the integrity of their existing dental work when applicable. The exam may just seem like “counting” your child’s teeth to keep things fun and lighthearted, but we’ll be checking for serious oral development issues that parents need to know about. By intercepting issues early, we can prevent issues in their future adult teeth.
Growth Evaluation—Your child is growing at a rapid pace. As part of their exam, our Wheat Ridge dentists will check their jaw development patterns, screen for orthodontic concerns, monitor their speech development, and even screen for symptoms of sleeping disorders. Since early intervention can help provide growth modification while your child is young, these visits reduce your child’s risk of complex oral surgery or orthodontic therapy in the future.
Fluoride and Dental Sealants—To help reduce your child’s risk of cavities in the future, we might recommend a fluoride treatment or dental sealants. Fluoride helps remineralize tooth enamel, making it more resistant to acids and cavity-causing bacteria. Whereas dental sealants—which are placed on the permanent molars—block-out food debris and plaque in hard-to-clean spaces. Sealants only take a few minutes to place and significantly cut down on your child’s cavity risk.
Digital X-rays (if Needed)—High-resolution X-rays allow us to screen for cavities between teeth, impacted teeth, eruption concerns, wisdom tooth development, and a host of other children’s dental issues. Plus, the images are viewable in a matter of seconds, making it easy for us to share our findings with families for a better one-on-one discussion.
Education and Coaching—Depending on what our Wheat Ridge dentists notice during your child’s exam, we can educate them on age-appropriate oral hygiene techniques (like cleaning certain teeth a little more) or adapting their diet to reduce their cavity risk. Sometimes they just need to hear it from someone who isn’t their parent!
Importance of Pediatric Dental Cleanings
Your child’s checkup helps promote prevention-based strategies that limit your child’s risk of emergencies and painful toothaches. These early visits also familiarize your child with our Wheat Ridge dentist. That way they associate dental care with something fun and upbeat, rather than scary or linked with pain.
How many pediatric cleanings a year are recommended? Seeing your child every six months (twice a year) is best. That way if our Wheat Ridge dentists see any areas of concern, we can address them while they’re small. This makes treatments less invasive, more affordable, and gentler for your child.
Tooth decay in children can spread extremely quickly. Although they will eventually lose their baby teeth, cavities can leave a lifelong impact on the development of their smile. Premature tooth loss or cavities spreading into adult teeth can permanently alter the function and appearance of their adult set of teeth.
Preventative dental care is usually covered at or close to 100% by most dental insurance plans. Considering the impact it has on your child’s smile, it’s worth it to use your benefits!
Experts recommend that all children see a dentist by their first birthday and schedule checkups twice a year thereafter.
Schedule your child’s next checkup at Kid Focus Dentistry today. We’ll be happy to answer any questions you may have.