For Good Oral Health for Children you should visit with Dr. Brian Francis, DMD, Billings Best Dentist.
To ensure good oral health for children, parents should begin brushing their child’s teeth as soon as the teeth start sprouting up out of the child’s gums. Parents can also clean an infant’s gums, prior to the sprouting of his or her baby teeth, by rubbing his or her gums with a damp cloth or paper towel. These early cleanings are considered good practice, because plaque and bacteria can begin to build up on the child’s gums right away in the child’s life.
Once the baby begins to sprout his or her teeth, begin brushing the baby teeth with an infant toothbrush. You should apply a tiny amount of fluoride toothpaste specifically made for infants (the amount of toothpaste on the brush at this time should be compared to a grain of rice, no more), and continue this regimen of regular tooth brushing, twice a day, until the age of two.
At the age of two you can assist your child in learning how to spit out the toothpaste while brushing. If the child is allowed to use water to swish out their mouth prior to spitting, the child may swallow the toothpaste, and, while toothpaste is not considered toxic in very small doses, it is best practice to spit out the toothpaste after brushing. At the age of three, the amount of toothpaste on the toothbrush can increase in size (think the size of a pea).
The American Dental Association recommends taking the child in for their first dental exam at the age of one. When a child is taken to the dentist at such a young age, the dentist can foresee future problems with a child’s teeth such as a possible over or under bite or determine a predisposition to possible cavities. The child will also be able to see the dentist with their parent, which helps to foster less fearful visits in the future.
Good, quality oral care is important to fostering a beautiful healthy set of teeth. Even though the child’s baby teeth will eventually fall out, poor oral health and the problems associated with poor oral care can and do exist in children.