As a parent, you want the best for your child. This includes ensuring that they are in good health. Just like your child’s general health, their dental health is highly important.
By taking steps now, you can prevent the onset of tooth decay, cavities, gum disease, and a multitude of other oral health problems. Additionally, it helps to create an aesthetically pleasing smile that will enhance your child’s appearance and self-esteem.
Here are a few critical dental hygiene tips that will help to boost the oral health of babies and toddlers.
Tip #1: Visit a Pediatric Dentist Regularly
By the time that your child turns 1, they should have seen a pediatric dentist at least once.
The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) states that it is extremely important that the baby teeth remain healthy and in their place until the emergence of the primary teeth.
The baby teeth are critical for the child’s lifelong dental health. By visiting a dentist early, complications can be quickly identified and dealt with so that they do not result in further complications.
Additionally, the pediatric dentist can instruct you on the proper dental care techniques, prescribe fluoride, and educate on a proper diet for dental health.
Tip #2: Clean the Gums from Birth
Many parents do not realize it, but it is imperative to clean the gums from the time of birth. This should be done with a soft washcloth that is moistened with water.
If you need more information on the technique of cleaning your baby’s gums, ask your pediatric dentist for instructions.
Tip #3: Start Brushing as Soon as the First Tooth Emerges
As soon as your child’s first tooth comes in, you should purchase a toothbrush designed for their age that has soft bristles. You should then use a very small dab of toothpaste that includes fluoride to brush their tooth/teeth after they eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
Additionally, the tooth/teeth should be brushed right before going to bed.
Remember to make the experience fun for the child as this will help to develop lifelong good dental habits.
Tip #4: Avoid Allowing Your Baby/Toddler to Drink from a Bottle Constantly
There is an issue referred to as “baby bottle decay”. This can happen with bottles, sippy cups, and similar products that a child is allowed to constantly drink or sip from.
Most liquids will include some degree of sugar. If the child’s tooth/teeth is/are constantly exposed to sugar, the natural bacteria in the mouth will feed on this sugar and will result in the development of tooth decay and other oral health problems.
Tip #5: Watch Your Child’s Diet
Children are naturally attracted to sweet-tasting, colorful foods that are loaded with sugars and other substances that are detrimental to the overall health of their teeth.
You should watch their diet, as this will provide a boost to their general health and their dental health. To learn about food products that are ideal for your child’s oral health, contact a pediatric dentist.
For more information on how to keep your baby’s or toddler’s teeth healthy, contact us today by calling