Dental milestones are a big deal for growing children! Your little ones grow up so fast, and it’s essential they hit all their dental milestones to develop a health and long lasting smile. Learn more about our step-by-step program that helps develop lifelong healthy habits.
What Are Dental Milestones?
Children reach several crucial milestones as they develop. A dentist needs to oversee how your little one’s teeth form and jawline grows in order to spot potential dental turns. We recommend that parents stop by for a visit every six months with their kiddo, so we make sure they are on the right path for healthy oral growth.
During each visit, we will track baby teeth formation progress, help your little one develop brushing and flossing habits, and prepare young ones to grow stable, healthy teeth. We’ll discuss how your kiddo’s teeth are forming during each visit and recommend treatments. Learn more about what to expect during each milestone and how we can help.
What To Expect At Each Dental Milestone
We breakdown pediatric dental milestones into five unique categories. Each period represents an important time for your little one’s dental development. From losing baby teeth to forming adult molars, we’ll help keep your child on the right track. Don’t worry! If there are any issues, we’ll come up with a game plan that will fit their unique needs.
First, congratulations on your new family member! You should know that teething usually starts when your baby is around six months old and continues for a couple more years. You should bring your baby in for their first dental visit around this time, so we can make sure their first teeth look great.
Baby teeth erupt between 6-12 months after birth. Once the first baby tooth pops in, you should start regular pediatric dental visits every six months. We will also discuss if your child uses a pacifier or sucks their thumb. Ideally, we would want to stop these habits around age three to avoid any potential dental issues.
At this age, many children will show more signs of independence and skill building. They may begin to brush their teeth by themselves but we recommend an adult help with brushing until age 8. It is important for them to start to practice these habits with supervision and for caregivers to provide tools that reinforce these skills.
It is also important to monitor how well and long your child is brushing their teeth and encourage a healthy dental hygiene routine. Also, it is important to keep your child away from potential accidents. Kiddos this age love to explore but are prone to oopsies. Sometimes, your little adventurer can accidently chip a tooth or hit their jaw on bathtubs or coffee tables.
Around age six, your little ones could begin to have their first permanent molars — sometimes called six year molars — erupt. Since these are permanent teeth, parents should encourage great brushing and flossing habits to avoid any sugar bugs (cavities) down the road. Also, most children will start to lose their front baby teeth. It’s okay to wiggle them out or gently pull and lose teeth! If you need some help, schedule a visit.
Parents should also bring their little kiddo to the orthodontist for their first oral screening around age seven. Some children may need early orthodontic intervention to prevent spacing issues or misaligned bites down the road.
They grow up so fast! As your kid becomes more independent, parents may not have the luxury to oversee their brushing habits compared to younger years. Kids are susceptible to higher tooth decay risks around the early teenage years, so make sure you stop in for routine cleanings.
Around the age of twelve, young adolescents should have all their permanent teeth. It is really important to take your child to an orthodontist by this age for a full evaluation. Your child may have misaligned teeth, overcrowding, misaligned jaws, or other issues, and an orthodontist can provide a plan for healthy oral development.
It’s bittersweet, but your little one is practically a young adult around this time. They are bright, young stars and almost independent. Teenagers may encounter peak tooth decay and gum disease around this age. It’s important to continue regular dental check-ups, so we can keep their teeth in tip-top shape.
Also, they may experience overcrowding issues, and wisdom tooth extraction may be necessary. During a routine cleaning, we may recommend a quick X-ray inspection to evaluate your child’s wisdom teeth and see if they are an issue.
Healthy Habits Start Here
From the first baby tooth, to their bright smile on graduation day, there are plenty of milestones you can look forward to as parents. Regardless of your child’s age, we hope you bring your little one in every six months for a check-up. We’ll take a deep look, catch up, and make sure their teeth are in great shape.