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Should Children Still Have Baby Teeth After the Age of 12?

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Maintaining good dental hygiene is a learning process that starts at a very young age. Even if a child becomes excellent at brushing and flossing their teeth, the American Dental Association (AMA) recommends regular pediatric dental cleanings. At Apple Tree Pediatric Dentistry in Lawrenceville, GA, pediatric dentists Dr. Jeni Kong and Dr. Sandra Oh provide their young patients with optimal dental cleanings. Dr. Kong and Dr. Oh are highly experienced in identifying problems or tooth damage early to help prevent complications.

At what age should children see a dentist for pediatric cleanings?

Infants should attend at least one dental visit before they turn a year old for a pediatric assessment or within six months after the appearance of the first baby tooth. At Apple Tree Pediatric Dentistry, our dentists examine the gums, jawbone, and teeth for any atypical growth or development. After the initial visit, Dr. Kong or Dr. Oh will let the parents know when the child should return for another check-up.

What is a pediatric dental cleaning like?

Pediatric dental cleanings take place within the comforts of one of our private treatment rooms at Apple Tree Pediatric Dentistry. Our hygienists first remove tartar and plaque buildup using specialized instruments. Tartar is heavy and strongly adheres to teeth, which is why it's difficult to remove with brushing and flossing alone. Once this is completed, we use a polisher to remove stains and give the teeth a beautiful shine. At the end of the visit, we offer fluoride treatments to help prevent cavity development.

How often should my child get dental cleanings?

According to the ADA, children should be making regular visits to their dentist, which is approximately two visits per year or once every six months. Dr. Kong and Dr. Oh will let parents or guardians know if a child should make additional visits within the year for specific treatments. This usually happens if our dentists identify problem areas, such as infection or tooth damage.

What if my child has damaged teeth?

If your child is in for a dental cleaning and Dr. Kong or Dr. Oh identifies damage to the teeth, then the child may have to come in for another appointment for appropriate treatment. Treatment will depend on the extent of the damage and if it impedes the child’s overall oral health.

Should children still have baby teeth after age 12?

Not all children develop at the same rate, so, in some instances, children can still have baby teeth until age 14. However, if a child is older than 14 and has a few baby teeth left, this could be a cause for concern. One reason baby teeth don’t fall out is that there is a lack of permanent tooth eruption. If baby teeth remain while permanent teeth emerge, this can cause crowding and crooked teeth.

Should parents help their children brush their teeth?

If children are young and are still learning how to use their hands for fine motor tasks, then parents should be available to provide hand-over-hand assistance. Helping a child learn how to brush their teeth the correct way initiates those good dental habits early and helps keeps the teeth and gums free from tartar, plaque, and infection-causing bacteria. Consult with our dentists for tips on how to better help your child with their oral hygiene routine at home.

Where to go to learn more about pediatric dental cleanings in Lawrenceville, GA

If you reside in or around Lawrenceville, GA, and are looking for gentle, high-quality pediatric dental cleanings for your child, contact our team at Apple Tree Pediatric Dentistry and schedule an appointment today. Pediatric dentists Dr. Jeni Kong and Dr. Sandra Oh are ready to provide your child with a wonderful dental experience.

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.