With a growing number of sweet treats designed to tempt children of all ages, it is difficult to keep track of what all is going into their mouths. Even with close moderation at home, there are still chocolate cakes at birthday parties and cherry pies during the holidays, random ice cream sundae nights and those days you just want to split a candy bar with your best buddy. Here at College Hill Dental we understand how hard it can be to protect your child’s mouth from the dangers of harmful bacteria. Fortunately, it is easy to teach your kids how to take care of their teeth from an early age, and most damage that can be done from tooth decay can be prevented with awareness.
Preserving Your Child’s Teeth
It is easy to convince yourself that since these first teeth are only temporary, they are not important, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. In reality, the health of your child’s baby teeth provides the foundation for communication skills and aid in chewing the food we give to nourish their bodies. Permanent teeth replace the softer, weaker teeth and without them as a guide can cause problems with speaking and eating as they grow older.
From the moment they are born, practicing good oral habits with your child can grant the benefit of added health. Gently washing and massaging the gums with a clean cloth can aid in the stimulation of growth while removing harmful bacteria that may collect in leftover milk in the mouth. If your child sleeps with a bottle, providing only water will cut back significantly on the chance of contracting tooth decay.
Kids Should Brush!
Smaller children can begin to use a toothbrush when they can understand how to hold one and begin learning how to care for their teeth. As there are many varieties of brushes available, including handheld to electric, picking out your toothbrush together as a family can be a fun way to incorporate a healthy dental routine that is enjoyable for all. Teaching children that brushing their teeth after they wake up and before they go to bed makes it difficult for bacteria to grow on them may help motivate them to brush on their own. A tiny dab, smaller than the average pea-size recommended for most adults, is best for kids just figuring out how everything in the mouth works. A toothpaste with added fluoride is excellent in helping to strengthen teeth.
Once your child’s first teeth start coming in is when you should start educating them on the importance of flossing. Carefully removing the particles of food from between the teeth after every meal, in addition to brushing and regular cleanings, can ensure your family’s smiles are protected from bacterial acids.
Knowing what to look for one of the first steps in keeping your children’s teeth guarded against disease. If you see white or yellow chalk at the gum line, these are indicators that the first stages of tooth decay have already begun. Fortunately, at College Hill Dental we know the earlier we detect the issue, the sooner we can get to work restoring any problems we might find with your child’s teeth. If you have any questions or concerns, please call our office at (541) 393-2575.