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We Serve Patients in the Scripps Ranch, Poway, Sabre Springs, Rancho Penasquitos, Rancho Bernardo and Surrounding Areas
Dr. McGrady understands that choosing the right dentist for your child is so important. Easing your child into the dental office and dental experience can make all the difference in trying to avoid dental anxiety from which so many adults suffer. We offer kids choices and slowly introduce new sounds and smells. We continually communicate with the parents, and when needed, consult with your pediatrician or orthodontist, to develop a plan that offers the best treatment for your child.
“But they are only baby teeth…”
Dr. McGrady hears this statement everyday. There are so many reasons to maintain your child’s oral health. Primary teeth serve as guides for the eruption of permanent teeth, holding the space for the new teeth to erupt. Preserving this space can help reduce future orthodontic concerns.
Even more importantly, your child's primary teeth will be there for most of childhood, helping them to speak, chew and smile properly. Primary teeth perform these important functions until around age 12. You will want to make sure those teeth stay healthy and are lost naturally.
Your Child's First Teeth
Baby teeth begin to appear between six and nine months, though in some cases it may start as early as three months or as late as fourteen months. The two lower front teeth usually erupt first, followed by the two upper ones. The first molars come in next, followed by the canines. Baby second molars take a little longer to grow and usually arrive after the second birthday.
Your infant's gums and new teeth should be gently wiped after each feeding with a damp washcloth. When there are a few teeth in the mouth, it is important to establish a daily brushing routine with a small, soft-bristled toothbrush. Dr. McGrady can help you determine when to start using toothpaste. We suggest that you help your child with this important task until they can tie their shoes. This skill helps us determine finger dexterity and coordination for independent brushing.
Your Child's First Dental Appointment
The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that every child sees a dentist by his/her first birthday. Though this may sound early, we can help you with proper pediatric oral hygiene techniques, check for cavities, and watch for developmental problems. This visit is often an informational visit and can be done independently or at one of mom or dad’s visits or while older siblings are being seen. Knowing how important it is to start your child off on the right track, Dr. McGrady always offers a complimentary first visit for children under 18 months.
Pediatric Dental Visits
As your child gets older, there are a variety of dental treatments available to prevent tooth decay or to save or repair teeth when necessary. They can include topical fluoride, sealants, white composite fillings, pulpotomies and primary crowns. If your child is ever in need of any of these treatments, Dr. McGrady will customize a plan for your child addressing both their dental needs and any nervousness or anxiety and ways to manage it.
Sports & Your Child's Teeth
If your child is active in sports, we highly recommend a mouthguard. According to the American Dental Association, an athlete is 60 times more likely to suffer dental harm when not wearing one of these protective devices. We can have a mouthguard custom-made for your child that will offer greater protection. Depending on your child’s age and dental development, we can help you choose the best guard for the greatest protection. Please ask us about mouthguards at your child's next appointment.