According to Straits Times article dated May 14th 2014, more than half of all children in Singapore have one or more rotten teeth by the time they start primary school.
This worrying trend prompted Health Promotion Board (HPB) to start on oral care programs to pre-primary school children starting in August this year.
It is important that parents are well-informed about their children’s dental health to keep this number from growing.
Some misconceptions that we would like to bust:
- It is okay not to visit the dentist since their milk teeth will fall out eventually
Although your child’s milk teeth will eventually fall out, it is important that young children do not develop tooth decay as milk teeth are placeholders for permanent teeth. Premature loss of milk teeth can have long-term implications, such as causing the nearby teeth to tip or shift into the space left unoccupied, resulting in the possibility for the new tooth to emerge tilted, crooked or misaligned.
- My child is too young to see a dentist
Your child’s first visit to the dentist should take place as soon as the first tooth erupts or at the very latest by one year old. The first dental check-up identifies any dental issues with respect to the dental growth and development of the child. The dentist will also advise parents on nutrition intake and home dental care for their children.
- My child will learn about good oral habits when they enter school
Parents should start practicing good oral habits with their child as soon as the first tooth appears. Childhood is the best time to establish good dental habits that will last a lifetime. Children with good oral health from a very young age are more likely to have better health overall.
Most importantly, the best way to teach children to practice good oral hygiene is to also practice it ourselves. When our children see us taking good care of our teeth, they will naturally follow suit.
For more information on how to prepare your child for his or her first dental visit, click here https://www.specialistdentalgroup.com/services/childrens-dentistry/#what_is_involved