A Parent’s Guide for Children’s Oral CareOctober 27, 2023 4:30 am
As a parent, cultivating good dental health for your child needs to be a top priority. Here are five helpful tips for promoting the health of the little smiles in your family!
- Start Early with Dental Care
- Establish a Consistent Oral Care Routine
- Choose Healthy Snacks & Limit Sugary Treats
- Protect Those Pearly Whites
- Lead by Example
The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that children have their first dental visit by their first birthday. This early introduction to the dentist can help your child become familiar with a dental office and build a positive association with the dentist. Starting early with home dental care, like gently wiping an infant’s gums with a washcloth and brushing your child’s teeth as soon as they erupt, can also help them get used to regular oral care.
For children younger than three years old, brush their teeth at least once a day using a child-sized toothbrush and a dab of fluoride toothpaste the size of a grain of rice. You can use a pea-sized amount of toothpaste for children older than three years old. When your child can brush on their own, usually around age 6 or 7 years of age, it is best to supervise until you’re sure they can brush properly. Don’t forget to introduce flossing as soon as two of their teeth touch.
Diet plays a significant role in oral health. Opt for tooth-friendly snacks like fruits, vegetables, yogurt, and cheese. Limit sugary foods and drinks, especially between meals. Excessive sugar consumption can lead to cavities and dental problems. Encourage water as the primary beverage to help rinse away food particles and acids.
If your child is active in sports, get them a custom-fitted mouthguard to protect their teeth from injury. Additionally, teach them the importance of avoiding chewing ice and using teeth to open packages, which can lead to chips and cracks.
Children often mimic their parents’ behavior so be a role model for good oral hygiene! Brush and floss together as a family, making it a fun and educational activity. Show your child that oral care is an essential part of your daily life.
San Antonio Pediatric Dentist
At Safari Children’s Dentistry and Braces, our dental professionals provide preventive treatments like sealants and regular checkups and can catch dental issues early on. Please get in touch with our office if you have any children’s dental care questions or would like to schedule an appointment for your child!
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