Regular dental checkups and cavity fillings are important for everyone, but they are extremely important for children. Here are some reasons why.

For Baby Teeth, It's a Learning Opportunity

Let's get this out of the way; dental care is important, even when children are still working with their baby teeth. Think of it as a practice run. If your child gets a cavity on a baby tooth, then you'll know that something is lacking in their dental hygiene. It's a great moment to sit down with your family dentistry specialist and review dental hygiene practices. That way, when they get their adult teeth, they will be ready to take great care of them.

Each Tooth Can Only Handle So Much

Once those adult teeth come in, there's no going back. Every cavity takes something away from the tooth. Each cavity filling requires the dentist to chip away part of the natural structure of the tooth. When cavities are left untreated, these holes get bigger. If a cavity doesn't get fixed in time, it may lead to the need for a more expensive root canal. Multiple cavity fillings on the same tooth may be possible, but only if the first cavity was caught early on and there's just a small hole filled in.

Cavities Lead to Infection

An untreated cavity is also a source of bacteria breeding grounds. They love to inhabit rotting tooth material. This can be a cause of regular infection in your child's mouth, which is bad for their overall health.

Cavities Can Spread

Cavities that touch the side of one tooth can have an impact on adjacent teeth; the bacteria that live in the cavity can start to chip away at the enamel of the next tooth.

Of course, kids don't inherently know the value of getting their cavities filled and taking care of their teeth. That knowledge often comes much later, when they start having toothaches and needing root canals as adults. There are plenty of things that you can do as a parent to help kids learn the importance of family dental visits and dental hygiene at an early age. For instance, brushing your teeth alongside your children, reading them stories and discussing good dental hygiene, and finding the right family dentist who has good rapport with your child are all steps you can take. Hopefully, your family dentist can also help you impart the importance of cavity care and regular dental visits on your children.