Has your baby gotten her first tooth? You probably felt excited, taking a picture and adding the date to a memory book. Those first baby teeth are an adorable and celebratory occasion for you and your child.
Of course, the appearance of the first baby tooth is also a time to focus on oral hygiene. After all, just like adult teeth, baby teeth can decay if they aren’t cared for properly. Here are tips for preventing decay in your baby’s first teeth.
Clean Baby Teeth Daily
Have you ever wondered when to start brushing your baby’s teeth? The answer is that you should brush them as soon as they appear above the gumline. Use a rice-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste twice a day to brush your child’s baby teeth, gums, and tongue.
If you’re unsure about cleaning these tiny teeth, here are some tips for cleaning baby teeth from the American Dental Association.
Limit Sugary Snacks to Protect Baby Teeth
Sugary foods and drinks lead to cavities. The sugars stay on the teeth, where bacteria and other substances begin to form plaque. Over time, bacteria in the plaque can cause the tooth’s enamel to wear away and form a cavity.
Provide your young child with a healthy diet and limit juice, candy, and other sugary treats to help prevent cavities and tooth decay.
Use Water in Bedtime Bottles
Your baby or young child might be comforted by having a bottle or sealed cup in bed with them and might even drink from it to fall asleep. However, it’s important that this bottle contain only water. If there is milk, formula, or juice in a baby’s bedtime bottle, the sugars can lead to cavities.
In fact, sleeping with a bottle of juice or milk is a common cause of Baby Bottle Tooth Decay.
Schedule Regular Dental Visits
At Healthy Smiles Children’s Dentistry, we follow the recommendations made by the American Dental Association that babies should have their first dental appointment as soon as those first teeth erupt or by their first birthday.
These early appointments help them feel comfortable at the dentist’s office, as well. We also teach them good oral hygiene habits to practice at home. If we find any problems, we can recommend the most effective treatments.
Contact Healthy Smiles Children’s Dentistry
Is it time for your baby’s first dental visit? Contact us to schedule an appointment with our pediatric dental practice. Our office is fun, friendly, and provides the highest quality of care.