Baby Teeth: Taking Care of Kids’ Teeth is Vital for Their Health
School. Sports practice. Music Lessons. Religious activities. Your family has a lot going on, and it can be tough to get everything scheduled. So skipping regular pediatric dentist appointments every six months can be tempting — after all, the teeth will fall out before the kid’s age is in double digits, right? Then, when the permanent teeth make an appearance, you can start to be concerned about proper dental care.
If your child has healthy baby teeth, there are many benefits:
- Helps your child chew properly
- Improves speech development
- Holds the right amount of space in the jaw for the permanent teeth to develop properly
- Gives your child confidence through nice looking teeth
- Minimizes the chances that your child will feel dental pain
Here’s the scoop on what you can do to ensure your baby develops nice, healthy primary teeth:
1. Start caring for new teeth as soon as they appear.
Once those first teeth pop through, use a soft cloth or a baby toothbrush to clean them at least once per day. You should wipe the gums as well in order to reduce bacteria that can multiply from milk, fruit and any sugary foods. Talk to us about when to start using fluoride toothpaste.
2. Feed a nutritious diet.
Speaking of sugary foods — keep them at a minimum. Juice or other sugary drinks are of particular concern, especially if you allow your child to carry around a sippy cup and drink between meals. It’s best to give a variety of lean meats, dairy products, fruits and veggies and only the occasional treat. Teach your kids to drink water as much as possible.
3. See a dentist on or before your child’s first birthday.
Older recommendations used to recommend that your child be a little older, perhaps 3, before going to the dentist for the first time. But now the recommendation is that you start your child’s relationship with a dentist at age 1, as soon the first few teeth are visible, according to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry.
An early appointment can also help a child to feel comfortable at the dentist’s office and establish a good routine for dental care.
Contact us for information about scheduling your child’s dental appointment.