NATIONAL CHILDREN’S DENTAL HEALTH MONTH
February is National Children’s Dental Health Month. This is a great month to take time to learn about the significance of good oral health for children. Oral health is no less important for children than it is for adults. This month, start the routine of helping your children learn healthy mouth habits!
Healthy Habits Start With Mom and Dad
Below is a timeline of what your children need from you for great oral health!
4 to 24 Months:
During this time your baby is all gums and will slowly begin getting baby teeth. Remove plaque and germs that cause tooth decay by wiping the gums with a soft washcloth after feeding.
As soon as those cute little baby teeth start to come in, it is time to start brushing. Parents should brush the teeth 2 times per day with water and a soft bristled tooth brush- even if there are only a few of those teeny teeth!
When your child gets to the age where they understand not to swallow toothpaste, it is safe to begin using a pea-sized amount of children’s fluoride toothpaste to brush their teeth. Do this as you would your own teeth- 2 times per day for 2 minutes.
Breaking the habits of thumb-sucking and pacifier use by age 4 is crucial! These habits can affect the spacing of teeth and cause issues later in life.
As for coming into the dentist, Dr. Lonergan suggests bringing your child in for their first visit at age 3. Before age 3, it is always an option to bring your child with you to your dental appointments to get them used to our office.
This is the time when your kids should start to become independent brushers. Reinforce brushing in the morning and before bed.
When it comes to the proper tools for brushing, finding your child a toothbrush that is made to clean those back molars is a great idea for getting to those hard-to-reach areas. As for toothpaste, use a child-safe fluoride toothpaste and remind them not to swallow it while brushing!
As soon as two teeth touch, you can begin teaching flossing techniques. Floss holders are great for children until they get the dexterity to do it on their own!
Oral health is no less important for children than it is for adults.
Valentine’s Day is filled with chocolate and sweets. Your teeth and gums don’t enjoy these fun treats as much as your taste buds do.
After enjoying those sugar f
illed snacks be sure to brush. If you can’t brush immediately after, rinse with mouthwash or water for the time being!
Letting that sugar sit on your teeth is a call for a cavity!
We are wishing each of you a happy Valentine’s day!