There are lots of things you have responsibility for when you become a parent, and one of them is your kid’s teeth. If you have children, you have a responsibility to ensure that their teeth are well looked after, which means there are a few things you should know about your kids’ teeth…
Dental appointments should happen early
As soon as you see your child’s first tooth, you should be on the phone with your local dentist to make an appointment. Ideally, your child will need to have their teeth checked every six months, and that starts from the moment they get their first tooth.
Taking your kids to the dentist early will help them get used to the process so that they are less likely to fear appointments in the future, as well as ensuring that their teeth are in good condition.
Sugar should be limited
If you don’t want to be learning about the different types of tooth fillings, not for yourself, but for your kid, right now then you really do need to limit the amount of sugar they eat.
Candy and soda are fine for an occasional treat, but they should not be given regularly. Even something like milk can cause a potential tooth decay problem if, for example, your baby is allowed to fall asleep with a bottle in their mouth. When it comes to sugary substances, exposure needs to be limited.
Pacifiers and thumb sucking can be comforting for young kids, but they can also cause teeth to become misaligned.
That doesn’t mean you have to stop your kids from performing these comforting actions necessarily, but if you do notice it’s starting to have an effect, you may need to help them find other comforting behaviors, and once they’re a year or so old, helping them to stop is probably a sensible precaution if you can manage it.
There is a right way to brush
From an early age, you should be teaching your kids how to brush their teeth the right way.
Use a pea-sized amount of toothpaste and softly brush back and forwards, ensuring that every surface of the tooth, and the gum line, is covered. Then, brush the tongue before spitting out any excess toothpaste. This should help to keep tooth and gums healthy.
Fluoride is a force for good
There are a lot of old wives’ tales and conspiracy theories floating around about fluoride, which can make parents anxious about using toothpaste that lists it as an ingredient.
However the fact of the matter is, fluoride is perfectly safe in the quantities you’ll find it in toothpaste, and it is one of the best defenses you have against tooth decay, so don’t be afraid to use fluoridated toothpaste on your kids.
It’s fine for kids to floss
They may not want to do it, and you may struggle to convince them, but it is safe for kids to gently floss their teeth, and doing so will help to keep their teeth healthy.
Take good care of your kids’ teeth!