Every parent is always concerned about the growth of their infant. Right from when the doctor confirms that it’s a baby, to the time of childbirth, to the time the child begins to produce teeth, and so on.
The growth and development of a child physically, mentally, emotionally, and socially is always a thing of joy to the child’s parent and sadly, while some parents are busy monitoring the growth of their child, they tend to ignore one essential care that the child needs – dental care. Doctors do well to educate parents on kids’ dental care and tell them the importance of seeing a dentist as soon as the child begins to grow a tooth, however, most parents do not take this seriously until the kid’s teeth require an emergency dentist and they begin to panic. Here are 10 ways that you can ensure the best kids’ dental care.
1. Do Not Use Bottles At Bedtime: For ages, parents use bottles to make a child fall asleep. They put milk or juice in the bottle and allow the child to suck till sleep comes. This tactic has proven to be very effective over the years but an unknown truth about this stunt is that when children sleep and the milk or juice stays long on their teeth, it can cause tooth decay. To avoid something of that nature, take away bottles from the child at night. Also, before the child sleeps, use warm water or a damp cloth to clean the child’s mouth. If your child can’t stop crying because of the bottle, then fill the bottle with water instead of milk or juice.
2. Do Not Use Pacifiers: Pacifiers, as the name implies, are used to calm babies. It can keep them from shouting and making a scene when you are in the midst of people, it can also help to put the baby to sleep. However, it is important to know that pacifiers can alter the growth of your child’s teeth. The use of pacifiers can cause misalignment when the child begins to grow teeth and you do not want your child to have misaligned teeth. Another common activity that can cause teeth misalignment is thumb sucking. Thumb sucking can cause misalignment and also damage the roof of the mouth.
3. Brushing: This might sound odd but you do not have to wait for a child to begin to grow teeth before you start brushing for the child. You can brush begin by washing the child’s mouth with water and a damp cloth or you can make use of your fingers to clean the mouth of your child after feeding the child. When the child’s teeth begin to sprout, use a toothbrush with soft bristles to wash the child’s teeth twice daily. When the child begins to talk and walk, say between the ages of 5 and 7, you can teach the child how to brush and monitor the child till the child can brush without guidance. Also, be careful of the amount of toothpaste you use to reduce the intake of fluoride. Fluoride is important for the development of the teeth but swallowing it can be dangerous.
4. Floss Regularly: As soon as your child begins to have teeth growing next to each other, make it a habit to floss for the child once a day. Flossing is as important to children as it is to adults.
5. Be an Example: Parents are the first people that a child will look up to and this will make them try to emulate your habits without even being asked to. So, to encourage your child to brush twice daily, you should also brush your teeth twice daily. You can brush at the same time with your kid so the kid knows that you are doing what you are teaching and because they want to be like you, they make brushing a habit.
6. Eat Healthily: Kids are naturally attracted to junk and sweet foods but these foods will do nothing but cause damage to their infant’s teeth. To be of help to them, reduce their consumption of junk and do not only give them a balanced diet at all times but also teach them the importance of having a balanced diet.
7. Check for Signs: Always pay attention to the development of the child’s mouth. Monitor the growth of the child’s teeth and if you notice anything out of the ordinary, do not hesitate to contact your dentist.
8. Mouthguards: When the child begins to have friends that they go out to play together, give the child a mouthguard to wear to protect the child’s teeth while playing.
9. Be a First Aider: Whenever there is an issue with the child’s tooth or teeth, how to take care of them till you can get to an emergency dentist.
10. Regular Checkup: Take the child to see a dentist regularly for a thorough checkup and proper dental care.
Your child’s dental health is in your hands and it is your responsibility to make sure the child is healthy. These steps will go a long way in helping you if you follow them.