As your child grows, their teeth change and grow too. The oral care that they need will also evolve. Failing to meet these needs could result in gum disease, tooth decay, or poorly structured adult teeth. The key to taking good care of your child’s teeth is asking a pediatric dentist the right questions.

In this post, we will give you eight necessary questions to ask the dentist on or before your child’s next visit. Keep reading to find out what they are!

1. When Should My Child Begin Visiting the Dentist?

When your baby is born, there is no need to rush them to the dentist. But somewhere around their first birthday, you should take them to the dentist for the first time.

This is a good question to ask dentists during phone calls when you begin looking for a specialist in dentistry for kids. Ask them how they would care for your child’s teeth and when they would start. These conversations can help you pick a good dentist for your child.

2. How Do You Clean a Child’s Teeth?

When your kids are really little, they will need you to brush their teeth and gums for them. Children won’t learn how to brush their teeth until they are toddlers, and even then you will have to coach them about how to do it.

But before children have a full set of baby teeth, it can be hard to know how to properly clean their mouths. Ask your pediatric dentist what they recommend, and they will show you the proper technique.

3. What Products Should Children Use?

Ask your dentist about special toothpaste for children. Often, kids forget to spit out their toothpaste. Adult toothpaste can make you feel sick if you swallow it.

That is why many dentists recommend special kinds of toothpaste for kids because it is okay if they swallow some of it.

4. When Should My Child Stop Using a Pacifier?

This is a good question to ask your child’s dentist early on. Some kids will stop using a pacifier by themselves, and others will keep with it until you make them stop. Others will move past the pacifier but start sucking on their thumb.

For small kids, this is absolutely fine. But as children get older, sucking on a pacifier or their thumb could inappropriately direct the growth of their adult teeth. This could cause extreme orthodontic issues later on.

In order to avoid uncomfortable—and often expensive—orthodontic procedures, ask your pediatric dentist about the best time for your child to quit the pacifier.

5. Do Baby Teeth Even Matter?

This is a common question. A lot of people wonder if baby teeth even matter since they are going to fall out anyway. The answer is that baby teeth matter a lot, and the way that you and your child care for them will have longstanding impacts.

One of the reasons that caring for baby teeth is important is because those early years are the right time to establish good oral hygiene. If your child’s adult teeth begin to grow in and your child does not know how to take care of them, you risk losing a good tooth.

But there are lots of other reasons why it is important to care for baby teeth. Ask your dentist about it and they will walk you through the importance of good oral care at a young age.

6. When Should Baby Teeth Fall Out?

All children lose their baby teeth at different times. Some kids lose them all pretty quickly, and others will take a while longer. Many kids are excited about losing their teeth because they get to participate in Tooth Fairy rituals.

Many kids will start losing their teeth as early as six years old. If they are ten years old and haven’t lost any teeth, something may be wrong.

Ask your dentist about the timeline they predict for your child. A good dentist for kids can help your child stay on track and avoid any potential issues.

7. Should My Child Get Braces?

At some point many parents find themselves asking their pediatric dentist this question. Will my child need braces, retainers, or other orthodontic treatment? You may have a guess as to the answer on your own, but it is important to get a dentist’s opinion.

The main issues your child’s dentist will look for are overcrowding and extreme misalignment. With their trained eye, they can help you spot issues before they become huge problems. Often, they will even be able to recommend an orthodontist for you.

8. Can You Help With My Child’s Dental Anxiety?

It is common for children to feel anxious about visiting the dentist. It is so common, in fact, that most pediatric dentists have experience with it. This anxiety may be caused by oral hygiene, routine visits, or particular things like sedation dentistry for children.

Your pediatric dentist will likely be able to help with your child’s dental anxiety. It is important that they get through it because anxiety could cause them to neglect good dental habits in the future.

Remember, the way that your child expresses anxiety may be indirect. If they complain about stomach aches or sickness right before a dentist visit, they may be nervous.

If you get the sense that your child is nervous about getting their teeth checked, ask your dentist about how to make the experience easier for them.

Ask Your Pediatric Dentist About Your Child’s Dental Health

The point of asking your pediatric dentist so many questions is that it will help ensure that your child’s teeth remain healthy. At Pediatric Dentistry of Hamburg, this is our team’s top goal. Ask us all of these questions and more—we are happy to answer them.

If you are ready to have a consultation about your child’s teeth, reach out to book an appointment today!