Baby teeth will eventually come out, but that doesn't mean you should neglect the oral hygiene of your child while they are young. There is still a potential for cavities to form, and your child needs their teeth to remain healthy for speaking and eating in the early stages of development. These 4 tips will help ensure that their teeth are strong and healthy.
Visit The Dentist Early
Many parents do not even think of having their child visit a dentist at an early age, but the ADA recommends that they visit a dentist within 6 months of their first tooth coming in. The purpose of this visit is important for both you and your child. Their teeth will be looked at for possible effects caused by things like thumb sucking, and you'll be taught how to properly clean your baby's teeth at their young age.
Avoid Sharing Utensils
Bacteria is what causes tooth decay, so you will want to avoid sharing utensils that can introduce that bacteria to your kid's mouth. This is especially true if you are having issues with dental decay yourself. Sharing utensils is an easy way to unknowingly transfer bacteria, but thankfully, it can be easily avoided.
Wean Off The Bottle Early
Drinking juice or milk from a bottle will cause your child's teeth to be bathed in the liquid as they are drinking it. It's a good reason to get them away from a bottle and switch to a straw cup. It will help keep the liquids off of their teeth which will keep them healthy.
In addition, do not give your child a bottle in their crib to help them go to sleep. Brush or clean their teeth with a wet rag prior to bedtime, and give them a pacifier if necessary to soothe them.
Watch Out For Thumb Sucking
It's normal for a child to suck on their thumb, and most children break the habit before their adult teeth start coming in. It is usually not anything to be concerned about. Just be aware if they continue to do it by the time they lose their first tooth. Thumb sucking can affect the way that their adult teeth grow in if they continue to do it, so try to break them of the habit by then.
These are just a few ways to help your child maintain healthy teeth. For more advice, ask your dentist during their next semi-annual appointment.
To learn more, contact a family dentist like DSW Dental.