As a parent it’s your job to take care of your children’s teeth and teach them how to clean them correctly. Making it a daily routine is vital for your children’s future dental health and mouth hygiene, and it’s best to set good dental habits early on.
Read on and you’ll find out the best ways to look after your child’s teeth.
Why Is Dental Care Important?
The teeth are present inside the infant gums even before he/she was born. They are just waiting for the perfect time to come out at about six months old. The parents should start teaching their children about oral hygiene even before these teeth appear by cleaning the gums of the child and introducing gentle brushing.
Aside from serving as an auxiliary to articulation, the main function of teeth is to help us break down ingested food for better digestion. Children’s teeth commonly called “milk teeth”, plays a vital role in leaving a space for the permanent teeth, aside from its essentiality in chewing and speaking. It’s important to practice proper oral hygiene as early as possible to establish a habit that will be helpful once they become adult
When to Start Brushing
Dental and oral care for babies can start before their first teeth come out. Once your baby is about three months old, you can use a damp cloth or gauze to wipe your baby’s gums twice a day. It is the first step of introducing brushing to your child.
When the first tooth appears, keep using a gauze or try a soft toothbrush designed for babies in cleaning the teeth. As the child gets older, establish brushing as a daily routine and make it a fun activity.
It is recommended to use water in cleaning the teeth until 18 months old. You may also ask the dentist for more recommendations.
How to Brush Your Child’s Teeth
1. Clean your baby’s gums using a damp washcloth before their teeth appear.
Place your baby in a comfortable position then cover one of your fingertips with a clean gauze and gently rub your baby’s gums, Do this at least twice a day because it will help your child to adjust himself/herself in using a brush to clean his/her teeth.
2. Use a soft toothbrush designed for infants as soon as the first teeth appear.
Use a clean soft round-bristled toothbrush in cleaning the teeth of your baby. Most babies will feel discomfort and will be resistant at first but will eventually adjust to the feeling.
3. Use warm water
Introduce the toothbrush to your baby without any toothpaste at first. Just wet the bristles with warm water and gently brush the teeth. Once the child accepts the concept of a toothbrush, you may introduce toothpaste but start with a rice-sized to pea-sized amount.
4. Proper positioning and brushing
Place the baby in a comfortable position that allows you to see his/her whole mouth. Make sure that you hold the brush at a proper angle of 45° and brush the teeth gently in circular motion. Do not rub the gums to avoid irritations.
Most babies tend to swallow the toothpaste instead of spitting it out, and that’s okay as long as you give the proper amount of toothpaste — a rice-size amount will not cause any harm to your child. After the child is old enough to spit the toothpaste you may now increase the amount of toothpaste to pea-size.
6. Make it a routine
Make sure that brushing becomes a part of your child’s daily routine. To make it more fun, you can incorporate games and songs that make brushing seem fun. As your child grows, encourage self-brushing by letting them hold their own toothbrush. This is a long process but it will help them to have a sense of independence and confidence.
When to Take Them to a Dentist
We recommend that you schedule a visit to the dentist’s when the first tooth appears. Do not wait for dental issues to arise before bringing your child to a dentist.
Visiting the dentist at a young age and without any issues to treat will help the child establish confidence and trust with their dentist instead of fear. On the first visit, the dentist will do a quick examination by checking their gums, jaw, and bite. Followed by a demonstration of how to keep proper oral maintenance and hygiene.
How to Prevent Cavities
Brushing the teeth alone is not enough to fight cavities. Flossing is also recommended to remove plaque and food particles between your child’s teeth that may cause tooth decay and cavities. Watching his/her diet is also a big help in preventing cavities. Most children love sweets, which contains a high amount of sugar and is the primary food that causes bacteria in our mouth.
As a parent, you must also be careful with giving acidic food and beverages to your child because which can erode the protective layer of their teeth. Also, drinking plenty of water is essential in maintaining optimal health, including oral health.
Monitoring of your child’s oral hygiene is really important not only to prevent cavities and tooth-related issues, but also protect him/her from different gum and oral diseases.
Tips for Looking after older Children’s teeth
1. Use an Electric Toothbrush
The electric toothbrush designed for children is a game changer in encouraging regular tooth brushing. Not only is the technology attractive to kids, most electric toothbrushes allow you to set a timer to two minutes (the recommended time-frame for toothbrushing), helping the child learn the proper duration of the routine.
2. Teach Them to Floss
Once two of the teeth of your child are touching, you may now start flossing and cleaning in between his/her teeth. It will help to prevent cavities that commonly occur between the teeth due to food particles and plaque.
3. Visit the Dentist Regularly
Dentists are licensed experts who assist to help you with your child’s oral health. By giving them information regarding your children’s teeth issues, these oral health providers could further educate you in taking good care of your children’s teeth and maintaining their oral health as well.
GC Dental Solutions
Looking after your child’s teeth is an important role as a parent. If you are looking for a trusted oral health provider who can help manage this task, GC Dental Solutions in Helensvale can provide you a wide range of dental treatments.
GC Dental Solutions provide a roster of preventive and restorative services like teeth replacement, mouth guards, and fissure seals, as well as general dental treatments to help keep on top of your children’s oral hygiene.
GC Dental Solutions is your local dentist with friendly and experienced staff to make your visits relaxed and comfortable. Call us today on 07 5573 1368 or enquire online to schedule your initial consultation.
You can also book your consultation online at you convenience.