How Often Should Children Get Teeth Cleaned?

Five smiling multicultural children standing in a field in a line with their arms around each other

If your child practices good oral health habits at home you may think that they don’t really need to see the dentist for a cleaning. Think again! Here we’ll explain how often your children should get their teeth cleaned and why it’s so important.

How Often Should Children Get Teeth Cleaned?

The American Dental Association recommends that children (and adults) get their teeth cleaned every six months. This may seem like a lot, but it’s very important to children’s oral health to get these regular cleanings. Additionally, children should start getting their teeth cleaned when their first baby tooth erupts or when they turn one year old, whatever comes first.

Why Do Kids Need to Get Their Teeth Cleaned?

Plaque is a sticky film that gets on our teeth after we eat. It’s made up of saliva, food particles and bacteria. It’s important for your child to get their teeth cleaned because no matter how well they brush at home, it’s hard to remove all of the plaque. Plaque that isn’t removed eventually turns into tartar which can stain teeth. Tartar can only be removed by a professional dental cleaning. A dental office has the tools that allow a dental professional to clean and polish your teeth in a way that can’t be done with the tools you buy at a drugstore.

Routine Teeth Cleanings Also Involve a Checkup

A checkup entails the dentist checking your child’s teeth for signs of decay or disease. While you may assume that you could see a cavity yourself, cavities often can’t be seen unless they have progressed to a very severe level. A dentist can use special tools to probe your child’s teeth to find any soft spots that indicate decay. The dentist will also check gums for any signs of early gum disease.

More Reasons Teeth Cleanings Are Key to Children’s Oral Health

At cleanings children also get fluoride treatments. Fluoride is a naturally occurring element that remineralizes and strengthens teeth and is paramount to children’s oral health development. Baby teeth are still growing over the adult teeth and therefore it’s important to take care of them and to catch any oral health issues early. Further, the dentist can also check to see if your child’s teeth are developing well and check on any misalignment issues like crooked or missing teeth.

We Care About Your Child’s Oral Health

If you have any other questions about how often children should get their teeth cleaned, give us a call! We are here to help you take care of your child’s oral health from the very start.

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Helotes Family Dentistry

Helotes Family Dentistry