Good habits for child’s oral health

Your kids' dental health

Starting good oral health with your child early is vital for their smile. Before baby teeth appear, through to adult teeth, good teeth come from good habits. When a baby is born, the first set of teeth is already there, just under the gums. The arrival of a baby’s first tooth is always an exciting time! The front teeth usually begin to come through the gums between six and twelve months. Over the next 2 years the remaining ‘baby’ teeth will appear. By the time a child is 3 years old all 20 baby teeth will have arrived. These teeth are very important for eating, talking and smiling. They also keep spaces for the adult teeth.

From 4 months to 24 months - Start oral care early:

• Wipe gums with a soft‡ washcloth after feeding to remove plaque and germs that can cause tooth decay and gum disease

• After baby teeth arrive, brush teeth twice a day, with water and a soft‡-bristle toothbrush, you should avoid toothpaste containing fluoride

• Steer clear from sweet drinks in the baby bottle as this can be harmful once teeth start appearing

Once your child understands not to swallow toothpaste, they can brush with a pea-sized squirt of kid’s fluoride toothpaste to stop cavities.

• Brush twice a day for two minutes for the most effective clean, at bedtime and one other time during the day.

• Attempt to discourage thumb-sucking and pacifier habits before age 4 –they can affect tooth spacing

• Book regular dental check-ups each 6 months

From age 5-7 help kids develop into independent brushers:

• Reinforce 2 minute brushing sessions, twice a day (in the morning and before bed)

• Choose a child’s toothbrush designed to clean the hard-to-reach back molars, where the most plaque collects.

• Go for a child-safe fluoride toothpaste to prevent cavities – and make sure they’re not swallowing toothpaste. Brushing with a fluoride toothpaste is very effective in preventing dental decay. Regular toothbrushing removes plaque, which causes gum disease.

SOURCE: Please note Cornmarket cannot be held responsible for information contained in external websites.