Every human being receives two sets of teeth: the baby teeth and the permanent teeth. A responsible adult will know how to properly care for his teeth but you cannot say the same for a child. A young individual will have to rely on his parents and his carer to keep his teeth and gums health. The baby teeth will be in the mouth of any individual between 6 months or 12 years, and during this time, proper care will have to be carried out so that it can be maintained in the mouth up to the arrival of the permanent teeth.
Since the child is unable to take care of his own teeth, it will be your responsibility. The following are some of the oral health care tips that you will surely fund useful:
- Know the sequence of eruption of both baby and permanent teeth. The baby and permanent teeth erupt at a schedule so when you know the sequence of eruption, you can prepare for the coming teeth. You can tell whether the symptoms you observe on the child are related to “teething” or otherwise. This is also going to be essential for when your child crosses to the mixed dentition phase because you can time tooth extraction well, so that you can prevent crowding of teeth.
- Do not let your child sleep with a milk bottle in his mouth. Milk caries is a rampant problem in children. Many of the premature loss of teeth are caused by milk caries so you have to make sure not to let your child sleep with a milk bottle in his mouth. By doing so, you are allowing the milk to settle in the teeth and they become food for bacteria, thus encouraging it to grow. Make sure to brush your child’s teeth before he sleeps, to remove milk particles or if you cannot do that, simply flush his mouth with water by switching his bottle with water just before he finishes or swabbing his teeth and tongue with a wet cotton or gauze.
- Use kids toothpaste on your child. Kid’s toothpastes come in a special formulation that is more favourable for children. They taste better so they are not “spicy” like most adult toothpastes and they have no fluoride content. Do not use adult toothpastes on children’s teeth because they are stronger and so cause white spots.
- When your child is able to brush his teeth, make sure to monitor his attempts. While it is quite fulfilling for the child and his parents that he is now able to handle his own brushing, you should not fully trust a child to know how to clean for his teeth. After he brushes, make sure to check his mouth to see if he has done a good job; make sure to ask him to repeat if it is not satisfactory and praise him for a good job. Being a good example is also quite valuable. Children have the tendency to copy their elders so make sure to instil good habits on them.
- Take time to educate your child about oral health. Like when you teach your child to read, teach him to count and give him his first pen to write with, you have to take time to educate the child about his teeth, what they are and how to properly take good care of them.
- Start your child on a teeth-friendly diet. A lot of foods are enemies of teeth and if you want your child to grow with beautiful and healthy teeth, you should get him used to eating foods that promote good oral health and not otherwise. Staying away from sweets will save you a lot of trouble, so introduce your child to a healthy habit now so that he grows up healthy.
- Introduce your child to the dentist at an early age. A good relationship with a dentist will often equate to good oral condition. Do not bring your child’s first appointment to the dentist, already needing a tooth extraction. Introduce him to the dentist when he is still young and start a good habit in him, so that he grows up continuing what you have just started.