Finding excellent health care providers for their children is a top priority for parents, and deciding on the right dentist is no exception. You will want to work with a team that is welcoming to children and a dentist who makes them feel comfortable and safe. Better yet, it's convenient and time-saving when all members of the family can receive their dental care in one place.
We are a child-friendly dental practice in San Jose, CA and we are pleased to welcome family members of all ages. Our team loves working with children, and we believe it is never too early to start helping your child on the road to a lifetime healthy, happy smiles.
- Your Child's First Dental Visit
- Caring for Your Little One's Teeth at Home
- Why Baby Teeth Are Important
- What to Expect During Your Child’s First Visit
- Age-Appropriate Care for Your Child
- Protecting Your Son or Daughter from Tooth Decay
Your Child's First Dental Visit
Dr. Pham likes to see kids starting around age one when they start getting their baby teeth. While this age seems too soon for many parents, there are several excellent reasons why we recommend early visits:
- These first appointments allow your San Jose children's dentist to begin building a relationship with your little one so they can feel comfortable about dental visits in the future
- Dr. Pham is able to start monitoring their oral development so he can make parents aware of any concerns as soon as possible
- Our team has the chance to answer parent's questions or address any concerns they might have about their son or daughter's dental health
Your little one should continue their dental checkups every six months, and as they get older and more comfortable in the dental chair, we'll incorporate teeth cleanings and other dental services into their routine care.
Caring for Your Little One's Teeth at Home
Good oral hygiene for your baby begins before their first tooth even arrives. Using a warm, wet washcloth to gently wipe their gums after feedings will help to remove excess bacteria from their mouths.
Once their first tooth comes in, you can begin brushing with a small, soft-bristled toothbrush. This helps them acclimate to having a toothbrush in their mouth and keeps their new teeth clean and bacteria-free.
Around the age of two or three years old, when they can spit, you can incorporate a fluoride toothpaste into their brushing routine and teach them to floss. At this age, they can begin experimenting with brushing and flossing on their own with your continued supervision.
At age seven or eight, they can begin to brush and floss independently. However, it's a good idea to check in with them often during this stage to ensure that they're successfully removing plaque buildup and using the right techniques.
Why Baby Teeth Are Important
Although baby teeth eventually come out, while they’re in place, they play a crucial role in your child’s dental development. These adorable little teeth not only help your child start to navigate solid foods, but they also aid in proper speech development.
Baby teeth also hold space for permanent teeth to erupt properly. A lost baby tooth leaves an open space into which adjacent teeth start to drift. Now, when the permanent tooth is ready to make its appearance, it doesn't have enough space to erupt correctly, which leads to crowding and alignment issues.
Keeping your son or daughter's baby teeth healthy is one of our primary goals during early dental visits. Doing so will help your child develop a beautiful smile in the future.
What to Expect During Your Child’s First Visit
As the father of a young daughter, Dr. Pham knows that little ones can experience anxiety about dental visits just like adults do. Our goal is to help build your child’s confidence by providing a stress-free, comfortable environment where they can feel safe and secure.
During the first couple of visits, you are welcome to hold your little one in your lap to give them an added sense of security. We won’t perform any treatment on your child unless they're ready and until they’re receptive to it.
San Jose children's dentist, Dr. Pham, shows them some of the instruments that we use, lets them look in the little mirror, gives them a ride in the dental chair, and counts their teeth. Our ceiling panels have colorful underwater scenes, and many children get lost in looking at them while we check their teeth.
These visits also benefit you as the parent because we can take the time to explain proper oral hygiene and nutrition for your child and answer your questions about issues like bottle feeding and thumb-sucking habits.
Age-Appropriate Care for Your Child
As a family dentist in San Jose, Dr. Pham has the experience necessary to manage your child’s oral health needs as they develop. As your son or daughter grows, we may recommend some additional treatments to build strong teeth and protect them from tooth decay, cavities, or damage. Some of these recommendations may include:
- Dental sealants – We apply a thin plastic coating to the chewing surfaces of permanent teeth like molars to seal out bacteria and help prevent decay.
- Supplemental fluoride – There’s a good chance that your child already receives enough fluoride through foods, water, and fluoridated toothpaste. Still, Dr. Pham may recommend a topical fluoride application to further strengthen and protect your child’s teeth.
- Sports guards - If your son or daughter participates in sports, a custom mouthguard offers them better protection than one-size-fits-all options you find at the sporting goods store. Protecting your child's teeth during sports is essential since nearly half of dental emergencies are sports-related.
We are also pleased to work with a network of some of the top pediatric dentists and orthodontists in the area. In some cases, we may refer your child to ensure they get the highest quality care if we feel that's in their best interest.
Dr. Pham will also monitor oral development and let parents know when it's the right time for orthodontic treatment. Some children benefit from early orthodontics that can take advantage of their growth patterns early on to make space for crowded teeth, or correct underbites or overbites.
Protecting Your Son or Daughter from Tooth Decay
Did you know that tooth decay is the number one childhood concern? There are many steps you can take at home to help protect your son or daughter from tooth decay.
Teaching them about nutrition and ensuring they have a healthy diet is not only beneficial for their overall health but also their dental health. A diet rich in fruits and vegetables helps protect teeth from tooth decay because they increase saliva flow and neutralize the acids in the mouth that cause tooth decay.
Leading by example and modeling a good homecare routine of brushing and flossing also helps children learn proper techniques and the importance of consistent home care. Ensuring that your son or daughter visits their San Jose dentist every six months is also critical for protecting their oral health.
Call to Schedule Your Son or Daughter's First Appointment
If it’s time for your child’s first visit or you have questions about their oral health, please call our San Jose dental office at (408) 287-8880 to arrange an appointment with Dr. Pham. We look forward to welcoming your little one to our dental family!