When is the Right Time to Start Dental Care for Kids?

If you ask any of the dentists here in our Edmonton office, they’ll say there’s no better time than now. Your precious little ones count on you so they can enjoy a healthy smile for life. Central Dental Family Dentistry can help you with their smiles but as parents, you play the most important role throughout the process.

You and your kids are always welcome to visit our dental office for further oral care advice. To start, here are tips you may want to take note of:

  • Watch out for early triggers of tooth decay. Milk and fruit juice both contain sugar that can linger on the teeth and develop into tooth decay. Practice keeping their feeding bottle away once they’ve already fallen asleep. Also, get them used to drinking water after taking their milk.
  • Practice good dental hygiene habits. For babies, it pays to wipe their gums and tongue gently with a damp washcloth. From the eruption of their first teeth to the age of 3, parents should brush a child’s teeth with a soft brush moistened only with water. Start teaching them brushing techniques as soon as they are able to comfortably hold a toothbrush. Fluoride toothpaste should be avoided until they turn 3, even then, use only a pea-sized amount for your little ones.
  • Change their toothbrush regularly. A toothbrush will no longer clean effectively once it’s frayed or worn out. Make it a habit to replace it with a new one every 3 months. Take the kids with you so they can choose a brush design they want. Don’t forget to always look for soft-bristled options.
  • Floss once their teeth start to touch. Once your child’s teeth start to touch each other, it’s time to introduce them to flossing. Brushing alone will no longer be enough to get the debris out of their teeth. Using dental floss will help remove food residue that creates harmful acids that can erode their enamel.
  • Moderate intake of sugary treats. Kids love sugary snacks such as candies and chocolates. Let your child enjoy them but practice moderation. Also, be sure to introduce them to more teeth-friendly snacks such as apples, carrots, plain yogurt, and cubes of cheese.
  • Be patient. If your little ones resist brushing, don’t give up. Start on a positive note. Share stories with them about the importance of good oral health. Do role plays together to simulate a dental visit. Make learning more about their teeth and mouth fun and encouraging.
  • Be their role model. Let your actions do the talking. Kids are most likely to follow your lead. Show them how dedicated you are when it comes to your oral health. Let them see you cleaning your teeth and mouth regularly. Also, be aware of using your teeth for tasks other than chewing food. Children can pick up these habits without you knowing.
  • Manage your dental anxiety. Your little one can develop dental fears based on what they see from you. Take active steps to manage your anxiety. Advances in dentistry make treatments almost, if not totally pain-free. If you have anxiety, ask our dental team what can be done to help you reduce that fear so your kids don’t follow in your footsteps.

Seeing your child smile is something you’ll always treasure. Help them keep that beautiful grin for a lifetime. Teach them to care for their teeth and mouth while they’re young.

Central Dental
Family Dentistry

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