Teeth and Toddlers: Proper Dental Care for Young Children in the Family

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kid having teeth cleaned

As parents, we are responsible for our children’s oral health. We have to make sure that they develop healthy dental habits while they’re young, as this will help them be more confident and live better lives in the future. All good oral habits start with knowing how to brush your teeth. You may be thinking, “Is there even a proper way to brush one’s teeth?”

Actually, there is. It’s not just about making circular motions inside your mouth with your toothbrush. It’s important to teach this to children for many reasons.

First, this will help prepare their mouths when their adult teeth are ready, as this will keep their jaws straight. They will also build good habits for other simple activities that involve the mouth, such as talking, chewing, and even smiling. Second, starting them young when it comes to proper oral health care will bring them a number of benefits that they can enjoy all the way to adulthood.

The challenge here is that many parents aren’t familiar with how much dental care is suitable for their children. Cavity prevention is just one part of the entire process. Here’s what you need to know about your children’s oral health:

Start Them Early

When exactly should children start brushing? Dentists highly recommend starting way before their first baby tooth appears. After all, just because their teeth haven’t grown to be fully visible yet doesn’t mean they’re not there in the first place. The truth is a child develops their teeth even while still inside their mother’s womb. Then, when their mothers finally give birth, their jaws already have 20 primary teeth just waiting to fully grow.

young girl having teeth checked

Before your child starts showing signs of teething, grab a clean, slightly wet washcloth and rub your child’s gums gently. This will help remove traces of harmful bacteria in the mouth. Once their teeth start to come out of their gums, switch to an infant brush and put a small amount of fluoride toothpaste on it.

Make sure you’ve chosen a child-friendly type of fluoride. These usually come in various colors and flavors to encourage your child to brush more. Don’t use more than the required amount, as you wouldn’t want your child to swallow more toothpaste while brushing. When their upper and lower set of teeth finally start to touch, then you can try flossing.

Take Them to Regular Dental Visits

Schedule a visit to the dentist (with everyone in the family) at least twice a year. If you take your children to their dental appointments regularly, it will feel normal to them. Remember, children thrive on routine and familiarity, so this will help them develop the habit and address dental anxiety early, if there’s any. When you take them to a dental clinic in Oviedo or anywhere in FL, tell them that they can freely ask the dentist whatever question they may have about their teeth.

Finally, have a healthy meal plan for the entire family. We all know the dangers of sugar on the teeth, but they’re not completely avoidable. Make sure that while your children consume sweet treats for special holidays like Halloween, they should still eat healthy food on normal days.