Early Dental Care


Normally, the first tooth erupts between ages 6 to 12 months. The gums are sore, tender and sometimes irritable until the age of 3. Rubbing sore gums gently with a clean finger, the back of a cold spoon, or a cold and wet cloth helps soothe the gums. Teething rings work well, but avoid teething biscuits as they contain sugar that is not good for baby teeth.

While your baby is teething, it is important to monitor his or her teeth for signs of baby bottle decay. Examine the teeth, especially on the inside (the tongue side) every two weeks for dull white spots (whiter than surrounding tooth surface) or lines. A bottle containing anything other than water left in an infant’s mouth while sleeping can cause or promote baby bottle decay. This happens when sugar is digested by bacteria, which produces acids that attack tooth enamel.  This is especially important during sleep because saliva flow significantly decreases and liquids pool around the child’s teeth for long periods promoting and/or accelerating tooth decay.

A Child’s First Dental Visit

Your child’s first dental visit can be scheduled around 6 months old. The most important part of this visit is for your child to become familiar with the process, and becoming comfortable with the doctor and staff. A pleasant, comfortable first visit builds trust and helps put the child at ease for future visits. If possible, allow the child to sit in a parent’s lap in the exam room. Children are encouraged to discuss any fears or anxiety they may feel.  Our doctors and staff team loves kids and treat every child as though they are our own.  We do not use restraining devices and will usually allow parents to be with their child during their exam.

Good Diet and Healthy Teeth

Our teeth, bones and overall health require a healthy, well-balanced diet.  Most sugary snacks and drinks that children eat can cause cavities, so they should be encouraged to eat healthy foods like vegetables, low-fat yogurt and cheeses, which promote strong, healthy teeth. 

Infant Tooth Eruption

Your baby's first teeth will begin to erupt between 4 - 7 months.  Their two lower front primary teeth will first, followed by two upper front teeth at 8 - 12 months.  There will generally be a total set of 20 primary teeth by the time your baby is 3 years old.

Permanent teeth begin eruption around age 6, starting with the first molars and lower central incisors. This process continues until around age 21. Adults typically have 32  permanent teeth, including 4 wisdom teeth.

Preventing Baby Bottle Tooth Decay

Tooth decay in infants can be significantly reduced by not allowing sleeping infants to breast or bottle-feed. Infants that need a bottle to comfortably fall asleep should be given a water-filled bottle or a pacifier. Our office is dedicated to fighting baby bottle tooth decay. Be sure to inform your dentist if you notice any signs of decay or anything unusual in your child’s mouth.