As a parent, you know you want to prevent your kid’s teeth from cavities but you have a difficult time determining how much dental care your child needs. Whether you are new to parenthood or not, keeping your kid’s teeth clean and healthy is always a tough job to do. To help you with it, here are a few information regarding dental care for kids that might enlighten you.
The Beginning of Dental Care
Before your baby’s very first tooth even appears, proper dental care should already be in place. Although you do not see them yet, your kid’s teeth are already formed underneath those gums. These teeth begin to form in as early as the second trimester of pregnancy. Then, when your baby is born, he or she should have 20 primary or baby teeth in the jaw.
To prepare your child’s gums for the eruption of his or her teeth, be sure to run a damp, clean wash cloth over it everyday. Doing so will help wipe away harmful bacteria. Once your kid’s teeth come in, you can start brushing them with a soft-bristled infant toothbrush. Mix a smear of toothpaste with a bit of water to clean their teeth until he or she reaches the age of 2.
Most children, at 2 years old, can spit while brushing. At this point, you may apply about a pea-sized amount of toothpaste and supervise them until he or she turns 5.
Developing Tooth Decay
Tooth decay can occur even during the early stages of teeth eruption. Once a baby’s teeth come in, he or she is vulnerable to decay, especially because the liquid they ingest–formula, mother’s milk, fruit juice, and cow’s milk–all contain sugars.
While it might be convenient for you to put your baby to sleep with a bottle of formula or milk, doing so can damage his teeth. Since the sugars from the milk stays in his mouth for hours, it can form harmful acids that could eat away his tooth enamel. To minimize the tooth damage, train your child to drink from a glass from time to time instead of sucking on a bottle all day long.
To check for signs of decay, look for discolored, pocked, or pitted teeth. Dull white lines or spots on teeth are another sign of tooth decay. In severe cases, decayed teeth are pulled out and the child will remain toothless until his permanent teeth grow in. If you see any of these signs, head to the dentist right away.
Take your Child to a Pediatric Dentist
Dental exams and proper maintenance are important to keep your kid’s teeth and gums healthy. The goal of the periodic visit is to catch potential problems before they even occur or get worse. Ideally, you should be taking your child to a dentist by the age of one or within 6 months of his first tooth’s eruption.
Whether it is temporary or not, teeth are essential. And if not taken care of, they can cause serious pain and long-term oral problems.
Just as permanent adult teeth, baby teeth are vulnerable to cavities. For very young children, tooth decay is often called Early Childhood Caries, or Baby Bottle Tooth Decay. It occurs when milk, formula, fruit juices, and other sweetened liquids stick to an infant’s teeth for a long time. Bacteria love this stuff so they flourish and produce acids in the child’s mouth that attack the teeth.
Aside from baby teeth imperative for speaking, chewing, and giving your child a bright smile, the same teeth act as placeholders for the permanent ones. If the baby teeth are lost too early, it may cause a crooked or crowded smile, and even speech problems.
Baby bottle tooth decay can be caused by a number of elements. One fairly common factor is when the baby teeth are frequently exposed to liquids that contain sugar for long periods of time. This usually happens when children fall asleep with a bottle containing sugary drinks such as milk. A pacifier dipped in honey or sugar can trigger the decay, as well.
Since tooth decay typically begins with bacteria being passed from a primary caregiver to the baby, cavity-causing bacteria may easily be passed through the saliva. When you put a pacifier in your mouth to clean it then place the pacifier in your baby’s mouth, you’re practically transferring bacteria to your child.
Not receiving enough fluoride for the teeth can also increase the risk of your child having baby bottle tooth decay. Fortunately, baby bottle tooth decay can be prevented with good oral hygiene at an early age.
In order to prevent baby bottle tooth decay, a series of changes in your and your child’s diet and oral hygiene is necessary.
Schedule a dental check-up with your dentist in Scottsdale once your baby’s first tooth appears. Your dentist in Scottsdale should know what’s best for your child’s oral health.
Tooth decay is never good news. Not only does it cause severe pain, it could also lead to more tooth problems and dental expenses if left untreated.
Children are not an exemption when it comes to tooth decay. Most people would not worry about cavities and tooth decay. But what most people don’t realize is that it can cause infection, pain, and, in severe cases, can even affect the child’s jaw development and speech.
Luckily, with proper dental care, and healthy eating and drinking habits, tooth decay can be easily avoided.
Baby Teeth are as essential as the Permanent Ones
Temporary teeth are important as they not only provide your little one the means to chew his or her food; they actually keep space in the jaw for permanent teeth and give your baby a vibrant smile.
As soon as the baby teeth show up, your child may already be at risk for tooth decay. Though it typically happens in the upper front teeth, the other teeth are not entirely safe from decay. There are even cases where the baby tooth is needed to be removed because the decay has progressed and gotten worse.
A tooth lost too early can cause the permanent tooth beside it to drift so when it’s time for the other teeth to come out, there wouldn’t be enough room. Eventually, your child’s teeth may become crowded or crooked as he or she grows older.
Give your baby an early start to proper oral care to help protect their gums and teeth against cavities and other mouth problems.
You Might be Causing your Baby’s Tooth Decay
Without even knowing, you might be passing harmful bacteria to your baby. Simple gestures such as putting the pacifier in your mouth when it falls to the floor or tasting the baby’s food using his or her spoon can transfer cavity-causing bacteria to your child’s mouth.
Put your baby to Bed without a Bottle
Every time you let your child sleep with a bottle, you’re practically luring his or her teeth into an acidic trap. Sugary liquids that pool around the teeth are food to the bacteria living in our mouth. These bacteria then produce acids which attack and erode the baby teeth enamel paving way for decay and cavities.
Honey-dipped pacifiers, as well as frequent exposures to sugar-containing liquids such as soda, fruit juices, or other sweetened beverages can also cause baby tooth decay.
Keep your Baby’s Teeth and Gums Clean
You will want to start proper cleaning and hygiene a couple of days after birth. Use a gauze pad to clean your newborn’s gums after every feeding. This way, you’ll combat plaque and help your mini get used to having his or her mouth cleaned.
Regular Dental Check-ups are Important
Besides opting for tooth-friendly diets and having good dental care and habits, a periodical visit to a dentist in Scottsdale is equally as important for your child to prevent cavities and decay. Your dentist in Scottsdale should know what oral care to recommend to your child upon check-up.
While you may be ready to pass the toothbrush, you toddler may not be eager to take it. In any case, they should be taught. At some point, your child will have to learn to do things—in this case, brushing—on their own. You just have to be there to make it happen.
Because toddlers do not really understand the importance of it, brushing, for them, can come across as an undesirable chore. Thus, getting your little ones to brush can be a serious challenge. For this reason, it is critical that you help him or her build a healthy oral routine.
Make brushing less of a struggle for the both of you with these tactics.
Motivate your toddler to practice on his or her stuffed toys or dolls. Doing so may help them get used to the idea of brushing and take scariness out of the picture. You can also show him or her the proper way of doing it, as well as let your tot brush your teeth to switch thing up.
Don’t expect too much
In the beginning, your toddler does not have to brush for a full two minutes. Just keep it short at first, and then slowly lengthen the time as your child gets older. Also, don’t stress out about them not being able to clean the gum lines or having to reach into the nooks yet. In these early years, it’s more about instilling the habit of brushing, rather than teaching them about the technique.
Give him options
Let him try out a bunch of toothpastes and let him decide what toothpaste and toothbrush he wants to use. Try new toothpaste each time or have your child pick one that he’s sure to like.
Let your toddler feel in control but ensure his or her teeth is getting cleaned in the process. You can let your little one brush his teeth in the morning, while you brush his in the evening. If they insist on brushing on their own, have them hold another toothbrush while you take care of the job.
Refrain from scolding or holding them down
Though this could get your job done faster, it can make brushing feel like a punishment for your child. This will make them dislike the process and resist any of what you want to instill. Keep it as light and fun as possible so they will be encouraged to practice doing so.
Brush your teeth with your toddler
Set a good example and join in when it’s time for your child to brush his teeth. You can set up a competition to make it more exciting for him. That way, you may motivate him into brushing longer to give his teeth a thorough cleanse.
Find a backup
Make a Scottsdale cosmetic dentist appointment periodically and ask your Scottsdale cosmetic dentist to give your little one a thumbs-up for brushing his teeth himself. This can encourage him to continue doing the habit and eventually making it part of his routine.