When your family is blessed with a baby, it is crucial to start taking special care about nutrition like introducing the food, the structure of the meal, the additional food for the mother if nursing, and many more. The problem arises when dental hygiene comes to question. Many parents have a tough time making decisions about their child’s dental hygiene. When to start, what to use, and what to do to prevent early cavities are just some of the vital questions you need to consider. Here are some tips for dental hygiene.
1. Nutrition which benefits teeth
Even though the general guide to a healthy diet and the amount of nutrients proportions is similar in children’s and adult nutrition, it is still not the same. The dietary needs of children involve more protein, vegetables, and grains as they get older, whereas the amount of fruits lessens. Of course, sweets, sodium, and highly processed food are a no-no from the start, even for yourself. Nutrition for kids, however, can differ according to your child’s lifestyle, so it is best advised to check with the doctors if special conditions are involved.
2. Be the example for your children
Maybe you have heard this phrase many times, and you wish your child went their own or different path than you. You’ve heard enough of it, and yet – it is scientifically proven. Your small child learns by copying you! Young children observe the world around them, and while still slowly developing their verbal skills, mostly learn by copying the world around them. So, to put it simply, if they see you washing and flossing your teeth every day, they will want to and quickly adapt to do the same. There is no greater influence on the child than the people they spend most of their time with.
3. Develop the dental routine for all family
Continuing the last statement, the parent can be the best influence in developing a dental hygiene routine. It doesn’t only revolve around copying the behaviour – teach them how it’s done! For the upper row – show the rain falls, and for the bottom row – how the grass grows. And do it together as soon as they can hold their toothbrush. Take it a step further, and go shopping for a toothbrush and toothpaste together. Let them choose their own, according to your kid’s age, and let them choose the flavour they prefer – be it the strawberry, coconut, or what is available in your local store. Do not forget that fluoride is the ingredient they should have to get a clean mouth.
4. The first dentist appointment
As soon as the first tooth starts peeking through gums, set an appointment with the dentist at least no later than the first birthday. The kid’s dentist is the expert that will follow your child’s teeth development, therefore, it is best to stick to one or have a file with the data from the appointments. Early start and regular visits can prevent problems and surgery, while you could early on know if there will be the need for orthodontics. Prevention can ease and shorten possible orthodontic treatments in the future, whereas intercepting the possibility of developing a fear from the dentist. It is normal to take care of your health, including oral, and as such is a part of regular annual health check-ups.
5. How to for infants
Infants truly are a special category since they are growing their first set of teeth – their primary teeth. Even before their teeth start growing, keep their gum clean with a wet washcloth or gauze. The first toot can already get a cavity if not cleaned regularly. The front teeth start appearing at about six months but can be prolonged to the 12th month. As soon as their teeth start, you should switch to soft toothbrushes for babies two times a day and help them see it as a regular part of the day. Baby teeth are the basics for secondary teeth and should be cared for accordingly.
6. Why and when to choose mouthguards?
When it comes to sports, many parents like their kids to start the sport they show interested in as soon as possible, be it on the playground with the other kids or starting with the professionals in a chosen sport’s local club. Specifically, contact sports like martial arts, lacrosse or football have a high possibility of injuries, which could include tooth breakage. The equipment for such sports often involves a mouthguard. A mouthguard is a piece of rubber or silicone that protects your teeth from any sort of force that could create an issue. They are most often used in sports, although they are considered a great alternative while solving the underlying cause of teeth grinding. Be it custom-made, stock, or ‘boil and bite’, a mouthguard can be another part of dental hygiene for your child, which helps in developing healthy habits.
7. What if a cavity happens?
Even though you’ve taken all the necessary precautions, the cavity happened, and your child’s primary tooth got dark or, even worse, causes pain. Unfortunately, genetics or stressful events can resolve tooth decay. Set an appointment and solve it with your dentist. Continue to take care and check that the routine is kept up, with more frequent visits to the dentist until told differently. Family efforts will be seen, and one great habit is a good basis for another. Hope these tips for your kid’s dental hygiene will help.