Five Signs It’s Time to Take Your Child to the Dentis


Many adults dread going to the dentist. In fact, 20% of adults in the US said the condition of their mouth and teeth gave them anxiety. A good way to keep all that adult anxiousness at bay is to start good dental habits young. Getting children to the dentist regularly is vitally important to their health, and teaching them good habits can help them grow to adults who do not fear the dentist’s chair.

Recognizing when it’s time to take a child to the dentist is a good way to catch problems before they become catastrophes. Here are five signs that you need to make a family dental appointment:

Tooth Pain

Just as cavities and other mouth complications cause pain in adults, infections, tooth decay, and other problems are uncomfortable for children. If your child complains that his teeth, gums, tongue or mouth are hurting, call your local dentist office. In children too young to explain tooth pain, watch for lost appetites and irritability with mouth-related contact. Monitor tooth sensitivity as well-- if a child suddenly dislikes ice cream because it’s too cold, or won’t drink hot things, consider visiting the dentist, as sensitivity is could be the first sign of a cavity. Finally, look out for bleeding or irritated gums, which could signal infection.

Bad Breath

Bad breath is sometimes normal, such as when your child first wakes up or after a meal. But, if the smell persists after tooth brushing, it might be a sign of tooth decay or gum disease.

White Spots

White spots on the teeth can be a serious sign of enamel damage. Chalky whiteness at the tops of molars can also indicate the beginning of a cavity. White spots can be hard to spot on mostly white teeth, so remember to check regularly and monitor tooth brushing. Furthermore, if you notice spots becoming brown or even black, then get the child to the dentist as soon as possible for an evaluation.

Loose Teeth

Children undergo the process of losing baby teeth over several years. Often, baby teeth become wiggly in the gum before falling out. However, if you know that an adult tooth is loose, or if you know the child was just struck in the mouth area, it might be time for emergency dental care.

Problems with Adult Tooth Emergence

Sometimes an adult tooth emerges without displacing the baby tooth, and the dentist will have to pull the old tooth to make room.

By communicating with your child and keeping an eye out for unusual behaviors, you can make sure your child gets dental care before real tooth pain sets in. Keeping tooth-related experiences positive help your child grow into a pain-free adult with a healthy smile.

Drew Rossell