Dental Health Care

Just for Kids!

Whether you are a newbie or a veteran when it comes to caregiving, a toothless grin can bring so much joy! But, at some point, that toothless grin should be a tooth-filled one, and we want those teeth to be healthy.

Click on one of the topics below to learn some tips to keep that grin-grinning!

Cavity Prevention

in children.

Did you know that you can prevent cavities?

Here's how:

1. Start Early! You don’t have to wait until your child has teeth to start cleaning the mouth!

  • Wipe their gums after each feeding with a soft wet cloth or finger toothbrush as soon as they make their debut.

2. Use toothpaste! When they get their first tooth – start using toothpaste with fluoride.

  • Until they can spit – use a small amount – the size of a grain of rice
  • Once they can spit – use a small amount – the size of a pea

3. Eat Healthy! Limit sugary foods and drinks (That includes juice and milk)

  • Give water with snacks
  • Watch the number of snacks your child has – too many can increase their chances of getting a cavity
  • No snacks after your night-time brush

4. Help! Until your child is about 8 years old – they will need your help brushing.

  • Having a hard time brushing – try these tips 
  • How you brush matters. Watch a video here to learn the best way to brush

5. See your Dentist! As soon as your child gets their first tooth BUT no later than age one.

  • Seeing them early helps to catch problems before they get too bad
  • Helps your child learn that seeing the dentist can be fun!
  • Dental offices take many insurance plans and some even have payment plans.

References

  1. The Tooth Decay Process: How to Reverse It and Avoid a Cavity. National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research. https://www.nidcr.nih.gov/health-info/tooth-decay/more-info/tooth-decay-process. Accessed October 23, 2020.
  2. Baby Teeth. Mouth Healthy TM. https://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/az-topics/b/baby-teeth. Accessed October 23, 2020.

Baby Teeth

are still important!

Why do we need to take care of our baby’s teeth? They will just fall out anyway!
For the same reason we do our car’s monthly maintenance even though we know – eventually- we will need a new one. If we take care of our cars:

  • They last longer
  • It costs us less money to maintain
  • They look better
  • We can go on great adventures!

The same is true for our children’s teeth!
If we take care of their baby teeth:

  • They hold the space for their adult teeth
  • They have better smiles
  • Speaking is easier
  • They miss less school
  • They can chew food during great adventures!

Your little one could get their first tooth as soon as 6 months!

little boy with lost tooth
baby teething

Teething stressing you out?

Click here for some tips!

References

  1. Baby Teeth. Mouth Healthy TM. https://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/az-topics/b/baby-teeth. Accessed October 23, 2020.
  2. Children's Oral Health. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. https://www.cdc.gov/oralhealth/basics/childrens-oral-health/index.html. Published October 30, 2020. Accessed October 23, 2020.
  3. Teething: Tips for soothing sore gums. Mayo Clinic. https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/infant-and-toddler-health/in-depth/teething/art-20046378. Published January 9, 2020. Accessed October 23, 2020.

Are you

Breastfeeding?

Children who are breastfed receive protection from many illnesses.

Here are some tips for breastfeeding mammas:

You can pass along germs that may cause cavities from your mouth to your baby’s mouth. Don’t put items you have placed in your mouth in your baby’s mouth. 

Keep your mouth healthy! It is safe for expectant and breastfeeding mommies to get dental care. 

Wipe your infant’s gums and teeth after every feeding.
You can’t see your baby’s teeth, but they are in there – under the gums – waiting to join the party! Use a soft wet cloth, or finger toothbrush to clean your baby’s mouth after each feeding.

baby with new teeth
baby with two teeth smiling

FIRST TOOTH?

When your baby gets their first tooth – CELEBRATE by doing these things:

  • Keep breastfeeding! The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends breastfeeding for the first year of your baby’s life.
  • Make baby’s first dental appointment.
  • Brush two times a day using fluoride toothpaste. Be sure to use a small amount of toothpaste that is about the size of a grain of rice.

References

  1. Office of the Surgeon General (US). The Importance of Breastfeeding. The Surgeon General's Call to Action to Support Breastfeeding. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK52687/. Published January 1, 1970. Accessed October 23, 2020.
  2. Oral Health Tips for Parents of Children from Birth to Age 3. Oral Health and Dental Care. https://www.colgate.com/en-us/bright-smiles-bright-futures/program-materials/oral-health-tips-for-parents-infancy-to-age-2. Accessed October 23, 2020.
  3. Breastfeeding: 6 Things Nursing Moms Should Know About Dental Health. Mouth Healthy TM. https://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/az-topics/b/breastfeeding. Accessed October 23, 2020.

Tips for Tears

during brushing.

OK! We know why teeth are important and how to take care of them. BUT what if your little one makes brushing their teeth a twice a day stressful event?

1. Aim for Stars! Brushing twice a day is best but if you can only get in there once – Aim for brushing before bed.

2. Tag Team! Have you ever said to yourself, “Why do you behave so much better for (insert name)? Silently admit defeat and see if your child brushes better with someone else. Maybe another parent, brother/sister, or a video call with a grandma will help.

3. Move! Did you know you didn’t have to brush in the bathroom? Try a different space in the house. Maybe brushing while watching a tv show will help or sitting in their favorite chair.

4. Tag Team – Part 2! Have help at home? Try one of these moves and work together.

5. Party! Music can make anything fun. Try letting your child find a song they like. Maybe they can pick out a special toothbrush or create a fun game.

Using disclosing tablets - we play “Brush Away”. Want to play at your house? Order disclosing tablets here.

mom and little girl brushing teeth

Remember, sometimes we have to parent through the tears. Brushing is important! If your little one cries while brushing - make sure to give lots of cuddles after!

Need more tips?
Make a dental appointment and ask your dental team!