You work hard to make sure your own mouth and teeth are as healthy as can be, but what can you do to make sure your child gets the best possible dental care as well? Check out the answers to some common questions parents ask us in order to improve your knowledge about your baby’s oral health.
When should I take my child to the dentist for the first time?
Most dentists advise that a child should have their first check up immediately following their first birthday.
How harmful is thumb and pacifier sucking and what do I do to stop it?
This isn’t much of a problem if it only happens when your child is very young as they usually quit on their own. If it continues past the age of 3, let our dentists know and we may choose to take further action and suggest ways to break the habit before it ends up affecting the alignment of their teeth and their overall oral health.
When should I start brushing my baby’s teeth and when should I start using toothpaste?
Many doctors recommend starting at birth by cleaning your baby’s gums with a wet washcloth. When their first teeth come in, it’s best to use water and then you can switch to toothpaste when they are around two or three, since this is the age they are able to spit the toothpaste out. You should use fluoride-free infant and toddler toothpaste and then check with a dental professional to see when they recommend switching to fluoride toothpaste.
When will my baby start teething and what should I do to help them through this stage?
Most infants start teething at around 6 months. Their two lower front teeth appear shortly followed by their two upper front teeth. When this happens, their gums will begin to feel sore. Teething rings are a great solution as well as tooth and gum cream or gel, which you can find at your local convenience store or pharmacy.
Does using baby bottles cause tooth decay? If so, what can I do to prevent this?
This usually only happens when a baby falls asleep while being fed, or when a bottle is used as a pacifier. To combat baby bottle tooth decay, have them finish their bottles before naptime and bedtime. You should also avoid putting sugar water, juice, or soft drinks in their bottle. We recommend encouraging your child to start drinking out of a cup by their first birthday.
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