Keep Your Child’s First Teeth Healthy with These Tips

As soon as your child gets his or her first teeth, it’s time to start taking care of them by getting into a normal routine. Baby teeth aren’t going to last forever, but they need to last at least until the adult teeth come in. Baby teeth are also more vulnerable to decay than adult teeth, so they need to be kept as healthy as possible from the beginning.

Maintain Healthy First Teeth

Your baby’s first teeth will probably be the lower central incisors, or the bottom middle teeth. They should arrive around 4 to 7 months of age, although that timing can vary. New teeth will continue to appear every couple of months or so until the final molars push through in the back of the mouth sometime before age 3.

The brushing routine for your child will change throughout these years, but it’s important to get started early to show your child the importance of taking care of his or her first teeth every day.

Even before your baby gets those first teeth, you can begin taking care of the gums right away to prevent gum disease. Using a small, moistened piece of cloth or gauze, wipe down your baby’s gums twice a day, especially after feedings and before bedtime. This will prevent the gums from accumulating a buildup of bacteria, which can damage your infant’s teeth as soon as they erupt.

How to Brush Baby’s First Teeth

When the first teeth poke through, go to your local supermarket’s baby care aisle and get a toothbrush with a long handle and a soft head and a tube of infant toothpaste. Make sure the toothpaste is non-fluoridated—your child won’t need fluoridated toothpaste(Read also:Do Whitening Toothpastes Really Work?) until he or she is about 2 years old. Using a dot of toothpaste about the size of a grain of rice, gently brush the front and back of your child’s teeth twice a day.

Around 12 months, you can start using a pea-sized amount of toothpaste.  Keep brushing for your child until he/she is old enough to hold the toothbrush by his/herself.Although, you’ll still need to supervise brushing until your child is about 6 or 7 years old to make sure she’s doing a good enough job.

Tips for Child’s First Dental Visit in New York

Toddlers like to prove to their parents they can do things on their own, and tooth brushing is no exception. To prevent squirming and/or pre-bedtime tantrums, try taking turns. Let your toddler brush his teeth first for a few seconds and then say “OK, Mommy’s turn!” and finish the job he started.

Even if there are no signs of problems with your child’s teeth, you should schedule your child’s first dental appointment sometime around her first birthday. Many general dentists treat young children as well, or you could look into taking your child to a pediatric dentist.

A pediatric dentist will be better prepared to deal with squirming, screaming, and crying. Pediatric dentists are also likely to design their waiting rooms and offices for tiny patients with short attention spans, outfitting their waiting rooms with toys, books, and TVs playing children’s movies.

Author
Midtown Dental Care

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