Do you have a brand-new baby and are wondering what you should be doing to help him start off with the healthiest teeth possible? Or maybe, you have an older toddler or child that you are realizing doesn’t have the best dental hygiene routines. Where do you start? Let’s take a closer look at what is recommended.
When and How Should Your Kids Start Brushing Their Teeth?
It’s hard to believe, but dental care starts before your baby even has a tooth. Take a damp cloth and rub it over your baby’s gums to clean off any bacteria as well as to get your baby used to the feeling.
Once your baby gets teeth, make sure to brush them softly with a toothbrush using water and a tiny bit (the size of a grain of rice) of fluoride toothpaste to limit the amount that is swallowed.
Your child should be able to learn to spit out their toothpaste while brushing their teeth around 2 years old. When you notice your child has two teeth touching, make sure to begin flossing between them.
It’s imperative that you develop a brushing and flossing routine with your child. As soon as they are confident in their brushing skills, allow your child to brush for a few minutes and then take your turn as well. When you are sure they are able to get all of those hard-to-reach areas themselves, they can be free to do it on their own.
When Should Kids See a Dentist?
Believe it or not, the ADA suggests that your child sees a dentist for the first time before their first birthday. At these first visits, the dentist can educate you as parents, and then later on your child about healthy brushing and flossing techniques.
When your child begins seeing a dentist at a young age, on a consistent basis, the fear of the dentist can be immensely decreased. Your dentist will also be able to help you monitor your child’s teeth from the beginning and help you with questions like braces down the road.
How Can I Help My Kids Prevent Cavities?
We know that cavities happen when food or drinks are left on our teeth for a long time without being cleaned. The enamel of our teeth is eaten away, and a cavity is formed. Here’s some ideas for preventing cavities:
- Begin brushing and flossing your child’s teeth at a young age and stay consistent.
- Limit sugary and sticky foods.
- Make sure your child is getting enough fluoride on their teeth. Talk to your child’s dentist about how fluoride can help strengthen their tooth enamel.
As you look forward to a healthy, vibrant life for your child, make sure that a healthy dental routine is part of that. Developing early dental habits can make a big difference.
At myDental, we are committed to providing safe, quality dental care to you and your family. Call to schedule your next dental cleaning and exam at one of our convenient locations. We would be happy to discuss any questions you may have about our many dental services.