Dental care is an incredibly important part of childcare. Parents should begin paying attention to pediatric dental care as soon as possible to ensure their child grows up with healthy teeth. This is especially important when you understand how much children are affected by tooth decay.
According to the American Association of Pediatric Dentistry, decay is one of the most common chronic conditions experienced by children in the U.S., with almost 50% experiencing tooth decay by the age of five.
Why Is Pediatric Dental Care So Important?
Children who don’t receive regular pediatric dental care are more vulnerable to tooth decay as they grow older. It’s estimated about 20 percent of children between the ages of 5-11 have at least one decayed tooth that hasn’t been treated. Around 13% of adolescents between the ages of 12-19 have at least one decayed tooth that hasn’t been treated.
Tooth decay results when plaque builds up on the teeth. This produces an acid that erodes teeth. Plaque buildup can lead to many other issues as well, such as dental abscesses and gum disease. Children who have tooth decay can experience a variety of symptoms, including bad breath, aesthetic blemishes on their teeth (such as black spots), tooth sensitivity, and toothaches.
Preventing Tooth Decay
Fluoride can help to prevent tooth decay, which is why it’s important to teach children to brush their teeth every day using fluoride toothpaste. If you have children, don’t just tell them to brush their teeth. Show them how to do it by brushing yourself. Showing by example will make it easier for them to learn how to do it correctly.
Dental sealants are another option. They can be applied to back teeth and will help reduce decay by 81% for upwards of two years.
Finally, it’s essential that children receive pediatric dental care on a routine basis. Take them to the dentist at least twice a year.
For more dental health tips for children or for health advice in general, be sure to visit us at The Benefits Store.