How to Make the Right Decisions to Ensure Healthy Teeth
Many parents have shared a joke or two about the lack of an official manual telling us how to raise our children. Though everyone seems to have an opinion to share telling you to do this or that, it can be hard to sift through the various information to get to the truth. When it comes to healthy teeth for your children, you don’t want to make the wrong decision or follow incorrect advice.
Dr. Jaynes and the dental team have tried to make it a bit easier for you by answering the questions you have about helping your children maintain healthy teeth. And if we didn’t answer your questions here, don’t worry; we know it is only natural to have plenty of questions about your child’s teeth. Be sure to check out our blog for helpful resources.
1. How often should my child have a dental checkup?
We suggest that they have their first dental visit within six months of their first tooth’s appearance. After that, we recommend a trip to the dentist once every six months. This frequency helps your child maintain healthy teeth and adopt the healthy habit of regular interactions with their dentist.
2. When do baby teeth fall out?
As with anything related to child growth, this can vary. However, most children will lose their baby teeth between the ages of 6 and 8. In most cases, the teeth will fall out in the order they came in, but this is not always the case. And even if your child still has baby teeth at age 9, this isn’t an indicator of a severe problem. Regular dental visits are the best way to monitor the health of your child’s teeth and keep things on track.
3. When should my child start brushing their teeth?
You probably never thought about when to start brushing your teeth because that decision was made for you long ago by your parents. So, now it is your turn to help your child learn how to brush their teeth. And don’t worry; learning everything you need to know about your baby’s teeth doesn’t need to be overwhelming. As soon as your baby’s first tooth appears, you can start by cleaning the tooth with a soft cloth or soft-bristled baby toothbrush. Once your child is 18 months of age, you can use a pea-sized amount of low-fluoride toothpaste. Be sure to have your child spit out the toothpaste after brushing.
4. My child doesn’t like brushing their teeth. What do I do?
Sometimes, children experience anxiety when it comes to brushing their teeth. We recommend talking to your child openly and honestly about brushing their teeth. And, you can help relieve any fear or anxiety they have by brushing your teeth with your child. Even the most stubborn of children will often cave when you make brushing teeth fun. So, read books to your child about going to the dentist, and come up with fun games to play at tooth brushing time.
5. How do you properly brush your teeth?
You may have been brushing your teeth for so long that you have never thought about whether or not you are doing it correctly. Learning how to brush your teeth is easy. Start by aiming your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle so that it is directed towards the gum line. Use just a small amount of toothpaste, about the size of a pea. Move your brush in a gentle circular motion, starting on the outside of your teeth and then repeating on the inside surfaces. For the best results, use a controlled back and forth motion along the chewing surfaces. After brushing, spit out the toothpaste and then rinse with a fluoridated rinse. The entire process before the rinse should take about two minutes.
6. What are the healthiest foods for my child’s teeth?
Some of the best foods for your child’s teeth include apples, celery, carrots, broccoli and other green vegetables, milk, cheese, yogurt, eggs, nuts, and seeds. Drinking plenty of fluoridated water is also beneficial and helps rinse away food particles that tend to remain in your mouth after eating. Though it is best for you and your child to brush your teeth at least twice per day, when possible, try to brush after meals. And don’t forget to floss at least once per day as small food particles can get stuck in between your teeth and can lead to tooth decay when not removed promptly.
Do you have more questions about healthy teeth for your children?
If you have more questions about your child’s teeth that we haven’t answered, don’t hesitate to ask us at your child’s next appointment. You can request an appointment using our convenient online form. We can’t wait to help ease your mind by providing answers to even the trickiest of dental questions.