Most of us know we have to brush our teeth, floss, and visit the dentist regularly. We are motivated to take care of our teeth to support our physical health and pride of appearance.
But do we know how to care for our children’s teeth?
Here are 10 tips to help you care for your child’s teeth!
1. Start at birth – Although you can’t see your baby’s teeth,
it’s important to take care of their gums to prepare for when their teeth do come in. This typically happens between 4 and 7 months old. Just take a wet washcloth and wipe your baby’s gums
daily to get rid of bacteria.
2. Infant Toothbrush – From their first tooth until about age 2, use an infant toothbrush with water and a small amount of toothpaste to clean your child’s teeth. There are toothpastes that can be swallowed by young children.
3. Use Two Toothbrushes – Around age two, children will often want to brush their teeth by themselves. However, they will often use the toothbrush to chew on which damages the bristles. Let them try on their own, then follow up with a second toothbrush with soft bristles and a pea size amount of toothpaste to brush their teeth. Children can usually spit around this age so make sure they spit out their toothpaste.
4. Try New Flavors – If your child is picky about the flavor of their toothpaste, try a fun new one! There are a lot of different kinds of toothpastes available in stores and online.
5. Supervise – Watch your children brush their teeth to help them create good brushing habits and to make sure they spit out their toothpaste. It is recommended that parents help their children brush their teeth until about 6-8 years old.
6. No bottles in bed – Putting a baby to bed with a bottle can create tooth decay. The sugars from the juice or milk sit on the child’s teeth while they sleep. It will eat away at the enamel causing pitted or discolored teeth. This can eventually lead to cavities.
7. Go to the dentist – The American Dental Association suggests that you take your child to the dentist by their first birthday. Starting young can also help children be less afraid of the dentist.
8. Brush twice, floss once – Just like adults, make sure your children are brushing in the morning and evening and floss their teeth once a day once their teeth are touching.
9. Sealants – When your child’s permanent molars come in, dentists can apply a thin amount of resin to the back teeth to keep out bacteria in the crevices. This can help reduce the chance of cavities.
10. Don’t Overdo Sweets – Try not to give your child too many sweet things like juice, jelly, fruit snacks, and dried fruit. When you do give your children sugary foods, try to serve them at mealtime rather than as snacks.
Schedule Your Appointment at Oral Care Dentistry
Dr. Parnaz Aurasteh believes that preventative dental care and proper oral hygiene are the best ways to protect your teeth and gums. To learn more about how to protect your teeth and your children’s teeth call us at (310) 247-1252 to set up an appointment today.