At birth babies typically have 20 primary teeth that have partially formed inside the gums. The first two upper and lower teeth usually begin to make their appearance somewhere around 6 months. Most children will have a set of 20 primary teeth by the age of three, so relax, the main teething stage has taken a rest!

When should pediatric dental visits begin?

Most parents aren’t aware that tooth decay can begin as soon as the first tooth erupts from the gum line. While these will be replaced with permanent teeth later on, decay in primary teeth could mean a higher risk of decay in permanent teeth. If severe enough, decay could also pose other health risks.

Starting Children’s Dental Visits 6 Months After 1st Tooth Appears

Start your dental visits early! The American Dental Association and the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommend a child’s first dental visit occur within six months after the baby’s first tooth appears, and no later than the child’s first birthday. Early exposure to the dentist chair can help your child feel more at home when going to the dentist. It’s also a great time to pick up tips on how to best care for and clean budding primaries, while answering any other questions you may have.

Here are a few tips for making the most of your baby’s first dental visit!teeth brushing lesson children image

  1. Come when your child is rested and alert.
  2. Stay positive and trust your dental provider will help keep your child’s teeth healthy.
  3. Try to make your dental visits an enjoyable outing.


Prevention and early detection provide a strong foundation for oral health. The first visit is more of an evaluation. The first two years of your child’s dental care will be more check-up/preventative. Around two years old, your child will begin having full dental appointments.

Pediatric Dentistry