Pediatric Dentistry is a branch of dentistry dedicated to the oral health monitoring of babies, children and adolescents.
Its aim is to diagnose, treat and prevent oral and dental problems, guiding parents and children in appropriate oral hygiene techniques and consequent prevention of caries, and modulating the behaviour of adolescents.
At what age is the first dental appointment recommended?
The first visit to the dentist should take place when the first deciduous teeth are erupted (“milk teeth”), and an appropriate plan for the child’s oral health and timely detection of habits that may be harmful, such as the inappropriate use of a bottle or sucking bottle, can thus be established in order to inform parents about preventive attitudes.
When do they erupt their first teeth and when is teething completed?
The eruption of the first teeth occurs around 6-8 months of age and by the age of 3 the 20 primary teeth will already be present in the oral cavity.
How important are the first teeth?
The deciduous teeth have several functions for the normal development of children, namely the orientation in the eruption of the definitive teeth, also playing an important role in aesthetics, chewing, swallowing, phonetics, breathing and jaw growth.
Should the deciduous teeth be treated?
Yes. Deciduous teeth, associated with frequent sugar intake and poor brushing, can be affected by caries just like permanent teeth. In fact, the characteristics of the first teeth mean that once tooth decay begins, it advances rapidly and affects the nervous tissue of the tooth faster than that of the deciduous teeth. Avoiding the pain produced by caries is already a sufficient reason for preserving the “milk” tooth, but in addition, as caries are an infectious process, they can affect the formation of permanent teeth as well as health in general.
At what age do you replace your teeth?
Between the ages of 6 and 12, deciduous teeth are replaced by permanent teeth, this stage being called mixed dentition. The first permanent tooth to erupt is, as a general rule, the first molar (6-7 years), and it is not necessary to lose any deciduous tooth for them to erupt.
What are crack sealants and when should they be placed?
During the mixed-dentition phase, crack sealants, which resemble a “varnish” and are intended to protect the surface of healthy teeth, acting as a preventive measure against caries lesions. This application is normally done on the first and second molars, as well as the premolars, according to their eruption periods.
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