They’re going to get a permanent set anyway !?!?
1. Positive dental experiences
If a child has painful toothache, they may associate this with a negative experience of dental care, even if they visit a dentist who is brilliant with children and who treats the tooth decay painlessly. Childhood trauma and pain could establish fears of dental care or treatment into their adulthood and lead to them avoiding visiting the dentist.
2. Good habits for life and self-confidence
It’s important that children learn to take care of teeth and understand how important they are. A good oral health routine in childhood makes it much more likely for them to continue these habits into teenage years and adulthood. A nice healthy smile is also very important for their self-confidence.
3. Toothache and concentration levels at school
Young children with toothache may not realise where their pain is coming from and not mention anything until their tooth decay is quite advanced. Being in pain can disrupt their sleep and concentration at school, as well as making them more likely to be grizzly and not ‘themselves’ when at home. And every parent knows the golden importance of a happy child and a good night’s sleep!
4. Milk teeth guide the way for erupting adult teeth
Primary teeth guide the developing adult teeth into position by holding the appropriate amount of space for the erupting tooth to grow into. Without this guide, adult teeth could drift into large empty spaces and cause alignment problems, which could increase the chances that your child needs braces when they’re older.
5. Eating and a healthy diet
It’s very important that children have a healthy diet and can eat a wide variety of foods. A child who has experienced severe tooth decay may need to have those teeth extracted and, if several teeth are missing at the same time, this could affect which foods they can chew. This may lead to them avoiding certain food groups and could affect the nutritional value of their meals.
6. Speech development
Some children are known chatterboxes and others need a lot more encouragement with their speech! Missing teeth through tooth decay/extractions could hinder very young children’s speech development, and in older children could cause temporary speech issues such as a lisp and possible subsequent confidence issues.
How to help your child to keep their primary/milk teeth healthy and reduce their chances of tooth decay
- Limit the amount of sugar they have in their diet and ensure they don’t have it too frequently.
- Ensure they are brushing for two minutes, twice a day, with a fluoride toothpaste suitable for their age group.
- Take them to visit the dentist as soon as their first tooth appears (around six months of age). Visit as often as recommended by your dentist (usually every six months).