Pediatric Dentistry

At Smiles on the Boulevard, we are committed to keeping every child’s smile healthy. To ensure your little one can enjoy a lifetime of excellent oral health, it is necessary to begin their dental routine early. By bringing them in for their first visit at an early age, we can instill great habits and help them feel comfortable. Together, we can keep your family healthy for years to come!

Pediatric DentistryWhen Should I Bring My Child in for Their First Visit?

Most children’s teeth begin to erupt before their first birthday. By three, all of their baby teeth should have grown in. At Smiles on the Boulevard, we recommend bringing your child in for their first visit within six months of their first tooth emerging. This will help Dr. Hawkins and her team make sure your little one’s teeth are healthy and growing properly. Additionally, the sooner they have their first visit, the more comfortable they will be during future visits.

What Will the First Visit Be Like?

It is incredibly important for your child to feel safe and comfortable during their first visit. If they have a scary or traumatizing experience early on, it may establish a life-long fear of going to the dentist. To make sure your little one feels at home, we will play games, count their teeth together, look for “cavity creeps,” and give them a ride in the dental chair! We like to have fun, be silly, and talk about their interests. We always try to make visits as fun and comfortable as possible for young patients.

What Is Included in Each Exam?

We will begin your child’s treatment with a professional cleaning. We will explain what each dental instrument is and incorporate games into their cleaning, so they do not feel intimidated or scared. After we have finished the cleaning, we will take pictures of their teeth to view together and will look for “cavity creeps” in their X-rays.

During your child’s exam, Dr. Hawkins will look for signs of cavities, infection, misalignment, redness, and a variety of other potential issues. She will explain her findings and help you decide what treatments to move forward with if needed.

Do Children Age 3-18 Need Special Dental Care?

In general, children have a higher risk of developing cavities than adults. This increased risk may be because of genetics, because they eat more sugar-filled foods than adults, or because they have not yet established a good oral hygiene routine. Regardless, children need special care and attention to ensure their growing teeth stay healthy for a lifetime.

To keep your child’s teeth in great shape, we recommend bringing them in for a visit at least two times each year. It is also important to make sure they develop good brushing and flossing habits at home. To give your child an additional layer of protection against cavities, Dr. Hawkins may also recommend sealant or fluoride treatments.

As they grow older, your child may require additional treatments such as braces, fillings, wisdom teeth extractions, and more. Dr. Hawkins will help you and your child understand their dental needs every step of the way, so you can keep their smile healthy and make educated decisions about their treatment.

If you would like to learn more about pediatric dentistry or how to keep your child’s teeth healthy at home, please call our office at 740-423-8416. A friendly member of our team would be happy to answer any of your questions or schedule an appointment!