The Center for Disease Control and Prevention has stated that tooth decay is the leading chronic, childhood condition facing the nation. To counter-attack the threat, parents have the responsibility of monitoring their newborns dental hygiene from day one. Some parents may think that dental care for their children is a waste of time as baby teeth will naturally fall out and be replaced by adult teeth over time. Nothing could be further from the truth.
1-800-DENTIST notes that "Most children start losing baby teeth by age six, starting with the front teeth and going all the way to the molars at the back by age 12 or 14." However, Junior's good oral hygiene is important from the get go, not only as a preventative measure, but as a way to ensure that children are well versed in the connection between dental care and oral health.
Dental neglect in the young can lead to greater dental problems down the line such as:
- Infection: Dental neglect can lead to infections in both children and adult. However, when the situation occurs in a child, a tooth extraction is the most practical solution. It can take up to eight years for a replacement to grow.
- Missing Teeth: The voids created by missing teeth may cause malocclusion (the misalignment of teeth) of adult tooth growth. In turn, that can only be remedied with costly orthodontic work.
- Malnutrition: Children need teeth to chew and eat healthy solid foods to grow and develop and dental woes can make getting the proper nutrition a challenge.
Pain: Dental neglect can result in cavities that if left untreated are prone to infection and pain.