February is National Children’s Dental Health Month and we know there can be a lot of questions about the best way to take care for their teeth. We’re here to make it easy for you with our Top 10 list. Follow these steps below and together we can instill good habits from a young age.
- Brush teeth twice daily (morning after breakfast and right before bed) for two minutes each time. Begin brushing when the first tooth comes in and at the age of three begin with a pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste (when they are old enough to spit). Side note: as babies you can wipe their gums with a damp cloth after feedings.
- Be sure to help your children brush until they are old enough to do so themselves. Typically we recommend the parent assisting until somewhere from 7-10 years old. Each kid is different, and some may need more assistance than others for a longer period of time.
- Brush and floss your teeth in front of your children. Lead them by example and show them how you take care of your teeth.
- Begin flossing once a day when two teeth touch each other. There are great flossers now that are easy to hold and clean between your child’s teeth.
- Schedule regular six month dental cleaning visits beginning at the age of 3. These are very important for your child’s overall dental health. In addition, having your 1-2 year old watch while mommy or daddy gets their teeth cleaned can introduce them to the dentist in a non-threating way.
- Limit the amount of sugary drinks and foods your child drinks and eats. They are bad for the enamel and can cause decay and cavities. Soda is the worst and should be avoid all together when possible!
- Protect their teeth from potential injuries by having a mouthguard made for your child if they are playing sports.
- If possible, refrain from using a pacifier or allowing them to thumb-suck after the age of three. At this age, they can do some damage to the developing mouth and teeth.
- Have your child drink regular tap water as many cities have fluoride added to their water, which is important for your child’s teeth. If you prefer bottled water or it isn’t available in your city , check with your dentist for additional fluoride options.
- Keep at eye out for any dental issues, like teeth grinding or a speech lisp. We’re here to help if any issues arise.
Questions? Contact Us.
If you have questions about your children’s teeth or additional best practices, please feel free to call our dental office and we can help. We look forward to seeing you at your child’s next six month check-up!