Pediatrics Question #45
Which response is most appropriate when the nurse is asked by a parent about when to start taking their children to the dentist?
- “It is recommended that the first visit should occur after all baby teeth have come in.”
- “It is recommended to take your child for their first dental visit at age 12 months.”
- “It is recommended to take your child for their first visit to the dentist before preschool.”
- “It is recommended to take your child to the dentist when the first tooth erupts.”
The correct answer is D. The American Dental Association recommends that the first dental visit take place within six months after the first tooth appears. Tooth decay is the most frequent childhood disease. Waiting until all baby teeth come in is not using a preventative measure to assure good dental health. Taking the child at an earlier age might decrease the anxiety associated with the dentist. It is also very important to keep primary (or “baby”) teeth in place until they are lost naturally. The first tooth usually erupts at 6 months old. Most children have a full set of 20 primary teeth by the time they are 3 years old. Early dental care is preventative care.