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Children's Dental Health Month: Oral Health For Your Child

Children's Dental Health Month: Oral Health For Your Child

As your child grows up, they go through many phases of life. This isn’t restricted to their interests and their growth spurts, but also to the development of their mouths and how their dental hygiene should be addressed as they age. Dental care for babies looks much different than dental care for children, and dental care for teenagers again incorporates new challenges. Don’t let these changes intimidate you; instead, learn about them and how to approach these changes with your child. To help you know what to expect and be prepared to help with your children’s dental care as it evolves, here are some of the big oral health changes you can expect at different stages and how you can handle them.

A Summary Of Your Child’s Dental Hygiene

Baby’s First Tooth. Take your child to the dentist for the first time either within six months after their first tooth erupts or when they turn one year old. Although it may seem early, this guarantees that your child won’t be starting their dental hygiene journey with any major oral health issues undiagnosed or with cavities from a young age. It is also beneficial to the parents as the dental hygiene of children is not always considered before your baby’s teeth come in and a discussion with a dentist can help parents to understand how to move forward as their children get more teeth that need caring for. Of course, taking your child to the dentist doesn’t end there; they should visit the dentist twice a year every year for checkups and cleanings. Once that first tooth erupts, you should brush it with a soft bristled toothbrush and minimal toothpaste. This will help keep baby teeth healthy but it will also make tooth brushing a regular part of your child’s life. 

Independent Brushing. Once they are old enough, they should be brushing their own teeth and flossing at least twice a day, once in the morning and once at night. The best way to ensure these good habits is to make them a part of their routine. When children first start doing their nightly routine on their own, parents may want to occasionally monitor their children’s tooth brushing to make sure they are reaching all parts of their teeth and only using about a pea-sized amount of toothpaste. Children don’t always understand the importance of brushing their teeth so try to explain to them how plaque can build up and what cavities are so they can understand the goal of brushing their teeth every day. You can also ask the dentist or dental assistant to help explain the importance of oral hygiene while you’re at a semi-annual checkup.

The Teenage Tooth Shift. As your child grows into a teenager their mouths will change yet again as wisdom teeth make an appearance. These teeth will often erupt before age 19 and can push other teeth out of position and cause pain in the teeth and gums. Wisdom teeth are also more difficult to clean and are at a higher risk of developing cavities. For these reasons, many dentists recommend having wisdom teeth removed. This can make some teenagers apprehensive, as it requires surgery. For children who only need a single wisdom tooth removed, they will likely only require local anaesthesia, whereas a teenager requiring all four wisdom teeth out at once may require general anaesthesia. It is important that your child knows that wisdom teeth removal is a common surgery that is performed quickly.

Your child may also need braces once they are in their teenage years and their jaw is fully formed. If your child needs to correct their tooth spacing or their bite, that may be done with traditional braces or Invisalign®. Regardless of which one you, your child, and your orthodontist determine is the most suitable, your child will need to make sure they incorporate these devices into their dental hygiene routine. This means learning to floss around the wire of braces or properly wash their Invisalign®.

Get Expert Children’s Dental Care In Calgary 

No matter what stage your child is in, Marlborough Dental Centre offers dental care for children of all ages. When you come for a dental checkup at Marlborough Dental Centre in Calgary, our team of dental care specialists will examine your child’s mouth for signs of cavities and gum disease to catch and treat any potential problems early. Whether your child has just had their first tooth erupt or is getting their first Invisalign®, the experienced and friendly staff at Marlborough Dental know how to make a trip to the dentist a pleasant and educational experience. To book an appointment at our Calgary Marlborough location, either call 1-403-248-2066 or fill out the online contact form.


Q: What do I do if my child gets a cavity?
A: If your child gets a cavity they will need a filling, whether it is a permanent tooth or a baby tooth. Even though the baby tooth will eventually fall out, leaving the cavity without a filling will lead to more bacteria in the mouth, future dental complications, more expensive treatment, and pain for your child as the cavity can easily cause toothache.

Q: Does Marlborough Dental offer family dental services?
A: Yes we do. Marlborough Dental Centre offers dental services for all, including senior dental care, restorative dental services, cosmetic dentistry, dental hygiene for all ages, emergency dental services, and dental care for children.

Q: When should my child start losing their teeth?
A: Children should lose their baby teeth somewhere between the ages of 6 and 12. If your child is over 12 and still has one or more baby teeth, visit Marlborough Dental Centre in NE Calgary or schedule a dental exam and determine the proper course of action.

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