How to Keep Your Child’s Teeth Healthy and Happy?
Children are some of the biggest consumers of sugary foods and snacks. This makes them prone to multiple oral health issues such as tooth decay and bacteria build-up. Their vigorous activities also risk them falling and getting impacted teeth.
All these things necessitate the need to be keener in helping your child take care of their teeth better. In addition to regular visits to your pediatric dentists, there are other steps you can take at home to ensue your kid has the best oral health.
Here are 7 tips our specialists at Desert Pediatric Dentistry recommend.
- No More Pacifier
Pacifiers are used to comfort babies and coax them into sleep. They are quite helpful especially when you are trying to comfort an angry baby in a public place. However, overusing them can interfere with the growth of your baby’s teeth.
It can lead to the misalignment of teeth. The same goes for behavior such as sucking of thumbs. Discourage your child from doing and start using sippy cups as soon as he/she is of age.
- Get Rid of the Bottle at Bedtime
Giving your child a bottle of milk and letting it lull them to sleep is a tempting behavior. Unfortunately, the bacteria in the natural sugars found in milk can lead to tooth decay. As your baby sleeps at night, their saliva production decreases which creates an environment for bacteria to flourish.
If you have to give them a bottle of milk, ensure you accompany it with water to wash down the remains. Wipe their teeth with a damp cloth to remove the food and particle build-up on their teeth.
- Develop A Brushing and Flossing Routine Early
Cleaning your baby’s mouth can start early even before their teeth grow. Before their teeth start to develop, use a damp cloth to wipe their gums after feeding them.
Once their teeth erupt, buy a toothbrush and start cleaning them. At the start, ensure you only use toothbrushes with soft bristles. Do not use fluoride but instead brush and rinse their mouth with water.
When you feel they are ready to start using toothpaste, begin with rice-sized amounts.
Your child will most likely need your help brushing till they reach the age of 4 or 5 years. All the while, teach them how to brush properly and how they can reach the hard to clean spaces.
It would also be best if you supervised their cleaning every now and then until they are 6 or 7 years old. This will help you make sure they are doing it correctly.
Remember to also include flossing into the routine as soon as their teeth start touching.
Make these habits a part of your family routine. You can even play their favorite song while they brush to make it more fun for them.
- Be Your Child’s Role Model
Between 18-27 months old is when your child will learn to imitate a lot of things they see you do. It’s essential that you take advantage of this period and use it to teach them how to take proper care of their oral health.
This includes brushing your teeth twice every day, flossing at least once a day and putting a limit on sugary foods consumption.
- Give Them Healthy Diets
Pediatric dentists at Phoenix Children Teledentistry emphasize on the importance of promoting a healthy diet to your child.
Encourage them to eat more fruits and vegetables and put a cap on how much sweets and other highly sugared substances they can consume. Always include minerals that strengthen their teeth in their foods. This includes foods rich in calcium and fluoride. These two make the teeth enamel become more resistant to decay.
- Ensure They Are Properly Protected During Sporting Activities
Once your child becomes an active member of sporting teams, get them the necessary gear and this should include a mouth guard to protect their teeth.
- Keep an Eye Out for Any Dental Concerns
In the same way you watch your child develop physically, mentally and socially, you also need to stay mindful of their oral health development. Check to see if their jaw line is okay, and if their teeth are growing correctly. Are they having trouble chewing food?
If you notice anything out of the ordinary, visit our dental offices and our pediatric specialists will attend to your needs immediately.