A Guide to Children’s Dental Health

Most people know how important oral hygiene is. Brushing your teeth and visiting your dentist regularly decreases the chances of cavities, gum disease, and tooth loss. What about kids, though? Kids might be resilient in a lot of ways, but that doesn’t mean they can get away with neglecting their teeth.

Why is Children’s Dental Health Important?

Children’s dental health is just as important as adults’. Here is why.

  • To Prevent Dental Issues

Tooth decay is common even in children’s teeth. Ensuring your child looks after their teeth properly makes them much less likely to run into these kinds of dental issues. No kid wants to get a root canal!

  • To Keep the Teeth Clean

Clean teeth both look and feel good. It’s no secret that kids in the playground aren’t always kind to one another – the last thing you want is for your little one to be teased because their teeth don’t look clean.

  • To Promote Healthy Habits Long Into the Future

Habits formed when young stick with you long into adulthood. That’s why it’s so important to promote good oral hygiene when a child is young. If a child becomes used to brushing their teeth twice a day and visiting a trusted dentist twice yearly, they won’t think twice about doing the same in the future, joining an American dental care program and looking after their teeth at home. As such, they’ll enjoy a life of clean, healthy teeth!

8 Tips for Keeping Your Child’s Teeth Clean and Healthy

1: Brush as Soon as the First Tooth Shows

Babies typically grow their first tooth between five and seven months (although there is some wiggle room here). It’s an exciting milestone for any parent! Just remember that as soon as it happens, it’s time to start your child’s journey of good oral hygiene. To do so, find a soft baby toothbrush and use a small amount of baby toothpaste. Brush the baby teeth very gently and use circular motions. Keep in mind your little one may not like this at first, but the more you do it, the more they will get used to it!

2: Find a Gentle Toothbrush

No child needs harsh bristles scrubbing against their little teeth. For a child’s toothbrush, go for the gentler option.

3: Choose Children’s Toothpaste

While adult toothpaste is generally better for cleaning the teeth, it’s important to use child-friendly toothpaste when your child is still young. This is because a child’s toothpaste is not as harmful to swallow, and children tend to swallow at least a little bit of toothpaste!

4: Brush Your Child’s Teeth Until They Can Do So By Themselves

You might be proud that your little one can finally hold a toothbrush and perform circular motions on their teeth. However, that doesn’t mean you can leave them alone to brush by themselves. The chances are a small child (typically under the age of seven) won’t brush their teeth as well as an adult, often missing the back ones. For this reason, you should help your child brush their teeth until they are absolutely capable of doing it thoroughly on their own.

5: Supervise Your Child’s Brushing

Even after your child is fully able to brush their teeth by themselves, it’s still important to monitor them – at least for a little while. That’s because your child needs to brush their teeth for two minutes twice a day. If left to their own devices, they might not do so, as many kids see brushing their teeth as a chore! Eventually, it will become second nature to them.

6: Visit the Dentist Regularly

By the time your child has reached 12 months of age, it’s about time to start visiting the dentist regularly. From then on, visit every 6-12 months.

A good dentist will monitor your child’s dental health, offering treatment if necessary. Remember, a dentist may be able to spot issues before you. For example, a dentist might notice a small cavity and be able to fill it in before it gets any worse.

On top of that, bringing your child to the dentist from a young age will help them get used to the process. In turn, they likely won’t have a fear of the dentist as they grow older!

7: Don’t Let Them Eat Too Much Sugar

Sugar and teeth do not mix well, as it causes teeth to rot over time as it weakens tooth enamel. The problem is – kids love sugar! Of course, you are the parent, so you are able to monitor how much sugar your child consumes (for the most part), so avoid giving your little one too much candy or chocolate. Be aware of non-assuming sugary foods and beverages, too – juice can be just as harmful if your kid drinks too much of it!

8: Look After Your Own Dental Hygiene

Finally, make sure you look after your own dental hygiene. The reason for this (other than to promote good oral hygiene for yourself!) is that children copy what their parents do. By being a positive influence and openly taking good care of your teeth, your children will follow suit.

Finding a Good Dentist

Pediatric dentistry is a particular form of dentistry that knows exactly how to look after a child’s oral health. Looking for a dentist that covers this? BAFdentistry is an excellent choice. With excellent ratings from parents and being rated as one of the top dentists in Asheville, BAFdentistry is a safe, secure choice to keep your kid’s teeth healthy and clean. Much of the team specializes in working with infants, toddlers, and older children, so you can be sure your children will receive the best possible treatment every time. It’s a dentist the whole family can go to. 

To Sum Up

As you can see, dental care is crucial for children from the moment they grow their first-ever baby tooth. By promoting good oral hygiene, looking after their teeth, and visiting a dentist regularly, you can rest assured your little one will maintain good oral hygiene during their childhood years and into the future.