Make sure your child has a healthy mouth and teeth begins before the first teeth appear.
Pediatric dentists say that healthy oral health habits in children will prevent or lessen the risk of dental caries (tooth decay) and should begin with keeping your child's gums healthy from birth. Despite the fact that your child is only consuming breast milk, formula milk, or water for the first few months, and that these are all extremely important sources of nutrients and health for your child, milk still contains natural sugars that can influence the bacteria in the mouth towards tooth decay.
While your infant is still on liquids, cleaning the gums twice a day is sufficient. When your baby starts eating foods with his or her gum pads, you can wipe the gums more frequently after each meal. At this point, gum care can help to ensure that the ecosystem in the mouth does not become dominated by cariogenic (decay-causing) bacteria. Cleaning your baby's teeth using dental wipes or a wet washcloth on a regular basis will help minimize the number of bacteria in his or her mouth.
As your child starts to eat solid foods, a balance of nutritious meals and snacks is important not just for his or her health in general, but also for maintaining healthy gums. A diet that is high in sugar can increase the risk of tooth decay, so it's best to avoid sugary snacks and drinks as much as possible. Instead, focus on giving your child a variety of nutrient-rich foods, like fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains. These nutritious choices will help keep your child's gums healthy and strong.
It's important to start teaching your child good oral hygiene habits as soon as possible. Once his or her teeth start to come in, you can begin to brush them gently with a child-sized toothbrush and water. When your child is old enough, you can start using a pea-sized amount of toothpaste. As your child gets older, you can start to floss his or her teeth on a daily basis. These oral hygiene habits will help to keep your child's teeth and gums healthy for years to come.
When the gums are inflamed, they can be sore or painful, making teething more difficult. A cold dental wipe or washcloth might help relieve teething discomfort. While brushing your baby's gums, check the gums and tongue for any strange patches or changes in appearance that may indicate the need to see a dentist.
Early oral hygiene will also assist your kid to become accustomed to dental care and feeling more comfortable brushing once the teeth begin to emerge. Once your baby's teeth begin to emerge, use a smear of fluoride toothpaste twice a day with a little toothbrush. To maintain your baby's gum health, continue to brush the gums as well as the teeth.
It's important to take your child to the dentist for his or her first check-up within six months after the first tooth erupts, or by his or her first birthday. This visit will give the dentist a chance to assess your child's oral health and development, and to answer any questions you might have about caring for your child's teeth and gums. Regular dental check-ups are important for maintaining your child's oral health, so be sure to schedule appointments as recommended by the dentist.
At Little Egypt Pediatric Dentistry, we focus on providing comprehensive dental care for children of all ages. We believe that gum health is an important part of overall oral health, and we are dedicated to helping our patients maintain healthy gums for a lifetime. If you have any questions about gum health or oral care for your child, we encourage you to contact us today.