At Park Meadows Dental, we make sure to understand your child’s history so you are completely comfortable with the procedures we are about to do.
When should you start brushing your child’s teeth? This is a question many parents ask, and we have the answers. It is important to start taking care of your child’s oral health early to prevent issues. Our professional team at Park Meadows Dental can give you pointers on how to achieve optimum oral health for your little ones.
Your child’s baby teeth are important for many reasons. These little teeth start forming even before the baby is born. Generally, baby teeth begin to erupt at about 6 months of age and eventually fall out and are replaced with permanent teeth. Baby teeth assist in the development of speech, chewing, and are the place holders for the next set of teeth. To keep your child’s teeth and oral health in great shape it is vital that you begin a solid routine early on.
Start cleaning your child’s mouth before his/her teeth emerge through the gums. Using a soft baby brush or a small damp washcloth is perfect for cleaning inside this little mouth. Gently rub your baby’s teeth and gums to clean away residue. As your child gets older, you should continue helping with their oral health routine until they can manage the operation of a toothbrush by themselves. It’s a good idea to monitor them for the first few months, making sure they are doing it correctly and spitting out any excess toothpasteRequest an Appointment
Place your baby comfortably on their back so you have a good view inside their little mouth. Do not use toothpaste until they are old enough to understand that they need to spit it out and rinse. Position their head at an angle and gently clean their gums and teeth in small circles. They will feel relaxed and comfortable and may even enjoy the attention.
Your dentist will determine if your child has any signs of decay or issues with the alignment of their teeth during their visit. If something is an issue, your dentist will discuss options to correct the situation. Fluoride toothpaste is only recommended in very small amounts after your child reaches their third birthday. As with any toothpaste, make sure your child spits out all the toothpaste to avoid ingesting it. A good rinse after brushing helps get rid of the remaining toothpaste.
Flossing your child’s teeth is good practice. Start with a length of floss equal to the length of your child’s arm. Wrap the floss around the middle finger on each hand and gently guide the floss between the teeth with your index finger. As you slide the floss between the teeth, you will be moving it in a u shape to help remove any plaque between their teeth. Floss a couple of times between each space to ensure it is cleaned. As you move down the dental arch, use a clean part of the dental floss. Getting your child used to flossing means they will likely continue this routine when they are old enough to master the technique for themselves.
Saliva helps keep your mouth clean and since children have less saliva production than adults, it is imperative that they clean their teeth before going to bed. Brushing and flossing right before bed helps to ward off cavities.
When should I replace my child’s toothbrush? It is recommended to replace a toothbrush every 3 to 4 months to prevent the build-up of bacteria. New toothbrushes are available in a variety of shapes, colours, and styles so why not let your child help pick their new toothbrush? Keeping germs away from your child’s teeth and gums are important to prevent oral health issues. Your dentist will provide you with a toothbrush and floss after your regular dental exam to help keep up on good habits. Help your children keep their teeth from forming cavities by limiting their intake of sugary food and drink. Keeping a healthy diet also makes for strong teeth and bones.
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