A healthy pregnancy:
A child's teeth begin to form during the fifth week of pregnancy, so dental care should begin as early as
possible. The unborn baby's vitamins and minerals come from the mother's food, so expectant mothers
can ensure healthy baby teeth by eating a healthy diet.
Start cleaning teeth early:
As the first tooth appears, begin cleaning by wiping with a clean, damp cloth every day. When more
teeth come in, switch to a small, soft toothbrush.
Begin using toothpaste with fluoride when the child is two years old. Use toothpaste with fluoride earlier
if your child's doctor or pediatric dentist recommends it.
Brush your child's teeth twice a day until your child has the skill to handle the toothbrush alone.
Then,continue to closely watch brushing to make sure your child is doing a thorough job and using only
a small amount of toothpaste.
Avoid baby bottle syndrome:
A bottle can comfort your baby or help him or her fall asleep - but it also can harm his or her teeth. Baby
bottle tooth decay is caused when the child's teeth are frequently exposed to sugary liquids for long
periods. They often fall asleep with the bottle in their mouth and the liquid may pool around their teeth.
Acids formed by the juice or milk can attack the tooth enamel and may cause irreparable damage to the
Talk to your child's doctor or dentists about your child's specific fluoride needs. After age two, most
children get the right amount of fluoride to help prevent cavities if they drink water that contains fluoride
and brush their teeth with a pea-size amount of fluoride toothpaste twice a day. Parents of children over
the age of six months should ask about the need for a fluoride supplement if drinking water does not
have enough fluoride. Do not let a child younger than six years use a fluoride mouth rinse unless the
child's doctor or pediatric dentist recommends it.
Give your child a healthy diet:
Make sure your child drinks plenty of milk and eats other calcium-rich foods, such as yogurt and
cheese. Discourage snacks that are high in sugar or starch or sticky foods.
Regular at-home brushing and flossing after every meal can keep dental problems to a minimum. From
age two, children should begin to brush their own teeth with a parent's help. After age eight, children
can brush and floss alone. Sealants can help prevent tooth decay in children under age 15.
Visit your pediatric dentist by your child's first birthday:
This may seem early, but your pediatric dentist can review cleaning techniques and look for problems
with your child's primary teeth. Avoid using phrases such as "It won't hurt," or "Be brave". Instead, help
your child be comfortable and unafraid of dental checkups.
|3750 Dacoro Lane | Ste 120 | Castle Rock, CO 80109 | (303) 663 3388
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© 2008 pediatric denticare, p.c.
Purvi V. Shah
Board Certified Pediatric Dentist