Decay is alarmingly common in UK children, despite the fact that it is almost always preventable. We are eager for all our younger patients to enjoy good oral health and stay free from nasty tooth pain and this is why we encourage parents to bring children in for a quick check-up on a regular basis.
When should children go for their first check-up?
Ideally, the earlier children see a dentist, the better. We strongly recommend regular check-ups from the age of 12-24 months. Taking children for dental appointments when they are young enables them to get used to the dental surgery and build a relationship with their dentist.
What happens during a check-up?
When your child comes for a check-up, we will have a good look around their mouth and look for any signs of decay or developmental issues. If there are changes, they will be recorded in your child’s notes. We can also take the time to chat to kids about teeth cleaning and diet and to show them how to brush their teeth properly. We’re always happy to answer questions and we can also offer advice for parents. Check-ups only take a few minutes and if there are no problems, that will be it until the next appointment. If your child does need treatment, we will discuss this with you and explain what the treatment entails and how it will benefit them.
How often does my child need to see a dentist?
We recommend 6 monthly check-ups for children, but if they show signs of oral health problems or you are worried that they might have cavities, arrange an appointment as soon as you can, rather than waiting for their next routine check.
What are the symptoms of dental decay?
If your child is complaining about dental pain or toothache, they are avoiding using a tooth or one side of their mouth when they chew or they have pain when they eat or drink something hot or cold, this may be symptomatic of decay. Sometimes you can also see cavities on the surface of the tooth; they look like small yellow or brown holes in the enamel.