Genesee County Health Department
Better Life Through Better Health
Keep Your Child’s Smile Healthy
Children with healthy smiles are easier to find today because of
regular dental care. Dental professionals advise parents to take early
action to insure the health of their child's
teeth. Attitudes and habits learned at an early age are key to good oral
health for a lifetime.
Babies usually get their first tooth at about age six months. By age
three, most children will have all their baby (primary) teeth. Although
baby teeth are temporary, they are vital to the future health of adult
(permanent) teeth. Some of a child's
baby teeth will need to stay in place until age 12 or 14. Early tooth
loss because of decay or accidents can cause a number of growth problems
for permanent teeth. Baby teeth are needed for proper chewing and
eating. They also hold space for permanent teeth and guide them into the
proper position. Baby teeth help develop good speech patterns and normal
jaw and muscle formation.
Some tips for parents to help keep their children's
- Daily brushing and flossing is important to remove plaque that
forms each day.
- Take your child to the dentist for annual dental checkups and
- Avoid putting a child to bed with a bottle full of milk or other
high-sugar drinks. This can cause extreme tooth decay.
- Fluoride treatments at the dentist, in the water and in fluoride
toothpaste helps fight decay.
- Low sugar snacks and a variety of healthy foods helps to keep a
Don't let lack of a dentist
or insurance keep you from getting dental care for your child. There are
places that can help:
- For a list of local dentists call the Genesee District Dental
Society at (810)230-3790 or call a national referral service at
- For low income cleanings and exams, call the Mott Community
College Dental Program at (810) 762-0493. For other dental care call
Mott Children's Health
Center at (810) 767-5750.
For more information about dental health visit the American Dental
Hygienist Association website at www.adha.org.or
the Amerian Dental Association website at www.ada.org.