While your kids may not have all of their permanent teeth yet, it is still important to take the proper steps to maintain a healthy mouth and smile. There are some steps as a parent that you can take to help your children take care of their teeth, as well as understand the importance of maintaining a regular oral hygiene schedule.
The Importance of Brushing and Flossing
You should begin to brush your child’s teeth with a children’s toothbrush and toothpaste when their first teeth appear.* Just use a small dab of toothpaste, since young children are more likely to swallow toothpaste when brushing rather than spitting it out. Teeth should also be flossed once a day once the teeth begin touching each other. Most children are ready to start brushing their teeth well on their own by age eight.
While a healthy and balanced diet is important for any child, it is also important to be aware of how often your child eats. Frequent snacking can increase your child’s risk for tooth decay. Because cavities occur when sugary foods stay in the mouth for a long time, limiting snacking can help to ensure a healthy smile.
Children should see the dentist by their first birthday to prevent cavities, address any concerns with the dentist, and ensure a healthy smile. Also, taking your child to the dentist at such an early age is a great way to get your child acquainted with the dentist, and help them to understand that the dentist’s office is not a scary place.