One in four children have never visited a dentist in California according to a recent study published in the July issue of the Health Affairs journal and reported in the Los Angeles Times and on California Healthline. The appalling statistic finds a quarter of our population under the age of 11 have never stepped foot in a dentist office or had their tiny mouths examined by a professional. Cavities are prevalent especially after the age six and untreated gum disease can lead to early decaying of teeth and other more serious health and heart problems.
“If parents neglect the first, early dentist visit for their children, they send a signal that oral health is not important,” said Dr. Kourosh Maddahi, leading cosmetic dentist in Beverly Hills. “This is devastating, I fear the implications of poor dental hygiene reach beyond youth and will surface in overall health as these children mature. Oral health is a barometer to our overall health and well being.”
Dr. Maddahi, expert dentist in Beverly Hills, recommends that children come in at least by their third birthday and visit twice yearly for a regular check-up and clean. He educates his patients on a dental health wellness program that includes dental hygiene program in the home, preventative care and a healthy diet for your teeth. But an oral health program in the home should begin when an infant receives his or her first tooth. Children should learn a daily routine of brushing their teeth after breakfast and before bed. The toothbrush should be changed every two to three months and after a cold or other illness. By or just before age six, he recommends children have a special sealant placed on their molars to protect their teeth from cavities and the child’s natural inclination toward a sweet tooth diet. He also is intimately aware of the diseases poor dental health have on children and adults because he’s spent numerous hours reversing and correcting them.
When you think about your own childhood, your dental wellness program daily came from habits instilled by your parents then reinforced by your dentist who you visited twice a year. If you didn’t adhere to this program, your parents would warn, “Your teeth are going to rot.”
Unfortunately for a quarter of our California children this may not be a threat but a reality. Dental health awareness, eduction and a proper oral health routine starts with you, for yourself and your children. Dr. Maddahi, leading dentist in Beverly Hills, can help you design a dental health wellness program to give you and your children longevity.