As with most things, it's best to start your kids early when it comes to taking care of their teeth so that it develops into a lifetime habit!
Taking care of your children's teeth is very important, since healthy teeth can ensure that your kids won't have any tooth pain, or even severe headaches that can be caused by cavities or infected teeth and gums.
Here are some tooth care tips to help ensure that your toddler's teeth are always in tip-top shape!
1. Take them to the dentist as early as possible
It's a good idea to take your kids to the dentist as early as possible so that they can get used to a dentist checking their teeth.
Most kids get scared of the dentist because of stories they hear from their friends or classmates, and sometimes even parents try to use dentists to scare kids. That's actually a bad idea since if you do that your kid might permanently get scared of the dentist.
Generally, you need to take your kid to the dentist as soon as their first tooth erupts, or on their first birthday, whichever comes first.
2. Be wary of baby bottle tooth decay
A lot of parents are guilty of this, they usually let their child fall asleep with a bottle in their mouth. While it's an effective way of making your kids fall asleep, it's actually a bad idea when it comes to their teeth.
Leaving a bottle in their mouth can cause baby bottle tooth decay, wherein the sugars in the milk/juice slowly eat away at your child's teeth. This happens when the bacteria in your kid's mouth mixes with the sugars, and this creates acids that eat away at their teeth and cause tooth decay.
3. Check the fluoride content of your kid's toothpaste
As soon as your child's first tooth erupts, you can already start brushing their teeth, even with fluoride toothpaste. The key is to know the amount of fluoride in your child's toothpaste.
For kids who are 3-6 years old, the fluoride content should be just around 1,000 ppm (parts per million). For kids beyond 6 years old, it should be around 1,500 ppm. Remember that you don't need a lot of toothpaste, just a pea-sized amount would be fine.
Fluoride helps strengthen your child's teeth, and protect it from cavities, so it's very important!
4. Brush twice daily, and don't forget to floss!
By far, the most important thing that your kids can to to keep their teeth healthy would be to brush twice daily, and to floss their teeth.
It's best for them to brush their teeth in the morning, and before going to sleep at night. That way, any bacteria or residue would be removed from their teeth.
Flossing is just as important since flossing helps remove the dirt and plaque in between their teeth, which simple brushing can't really deal with. Make it a daily routine, and start them young so that they get into the habit as early as possible.
5. Cut back on the sweets
Ah, sweets. One of the main culprits when it comes to tooth decay. While you can't really stop your kids from eating sweets, what you can do is to cut back the sweets they eat, and as much as possible, try not to get them used to drinking juice, eating sweet snacks, or eating candies.
Cutting back on sweets and junk food early on also helps them later on in life, since studies show that kids who weren't exposed to sweets and junk food while they were young end up healthier when they became adults.
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