Early Dental Care

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Early Dental Care in Amarillo, TX

Young boy smiling.

At Children's Dentistry of Amarillo, we strive to provide your child with the healthiest smile possible. A huge component of this is early dental care. It is of extreme importance to start your child off with healthy oral hygiene habits when they are young to ensure that not only their primary teeth are healthy, but also that they will continue these habits in the future. Primary teeth are very important to dental health – without them, a child cannot chew food properly and has difficulty speaking clearly. Primary teeth are also important for guiding healthy, erupting permanent teeth into proper position. Dr. Metcalf and our staff have provided a few tips on how to start and maintain your child's oral and dental care.

Infants

Maintaining good oral hygiene begins even before your child's primary teeth have fully come in, and neglecting your child's teeth can negatively affect their chewing and speaking capabilities in the future. To take care of your child's teeth, you can:

  • Gently wipe the gums after nursing or bottle feeding with a damp cloth to remove excess milk from the area.
  • Prevent baby bottle tooth decay by not allowing a child to fall asleep with a bottle or sippy cup.

Teething

You will see your child's first tooth between 6-12 months. During this time, the mouth and gums can be very sore, tender, and can cause irritable behavior. To ease this discomfort and keep up with your child's oral health, you can:

  • Gently rub the sore gums with a clean finger
  • Rub gums with a cold spoon or cold damp cloth
  • Use teething rings
  • Monitor the teeth for signs of baby bottle tooth decay
  • Make sure to check in with a pediatric dentist regularly

Baby Bottle Decay

The mixture of sugar in the liquid mixes with bacteria in dental plaque and can form acid that attacks tooth enamel, which can cause long-term problems for a child. This acid erosion can affect teeth within 20 minutes of meal times. When a child is awake, saliva cleans the area quickly, but when a child falls asleep while feeding, they are at increased risk of tooth decay. In order to reduce risk of baby bottle decay, examine the teeth every two weeks, paying special attention to the inside by the tongue for dull spots or areas that appear whiter than the tooth surface. If you are noticing a problem, consult a doctor.

Child's First Dental Visit!

Your child should visit the dentist for the first time right around his or her 1st birthday. At this appointment, Dr. Metcalf will make sure that the teeth are growing in correctly and everything is going as planned, as well as make your child feel comfortable in the dentist office. The earlier your child becomes comfortable with visiting the dentist, the less anxious he or she will be in the future.

Make an Appointment Today!

Thank you for choosing Dr. Metcalf as your pediatric dentist. We are conveniently located in Amarillo, Texas, and we are proud to serve the surrounding community. Our patients are our number one priority, and we are confident that we will provide your child with excellent dental care in a comfortable environment. To make an appointment, contact our office today. We look forward to seeing you soon!