As a parent, you naturally want what is best for your child. Whether you are a first-time parent caring for your firstborn or a seasoned professional, preventing tooth decay in children is never easy. Since tiny hands and mouths don’t yet know how to care for their teeth properly, tooth decay is prevalent in young ones. Our team at Harmony Dental has put together this article to help you learn how to prevent tooth decay from affecting your child.
1. Establish an Excellent Dental Hygiene Routine
It should be common knowledge that oral hygiene is one of the best ways to prevent cavities and tooth decay, but creating and sticking to an excellent oral hygiene routine is easier said than done. Our dentist in Waterloo says that the easiest way to establish a routine that sticks is to lead by example and begin early. Starting from infancy, you should:
• Clean your baby’s gums after feeding them with a warm washcloth
• Begin brushing their teeth with an appropriately sized toothbrush as soon as their first tooth emerges
• Begin flossing as soon as two teeth begin to touch
• Start using fluoridated toothpaste around the age of two or three, when your child can spit
• Brush for your child until they can do it effectively on their own, typically around the age of six
• Ensure your child brushes twice per day and flosses once daily
2. Limit Sugar Intake
Today, sugar is in almost everything we ingest, so paying attention to what your child is regularly eating is more important than ever. Our pediatric dentist in Waterloo says that not only do tooth-decay bugs feast on sugar, but other serious oral health diseases thrive on it as well, so limiting sugar is always a good idea. Choose healthy, unprocessed snacks such as cheese, vegetables, fruits, and yogurts. Avoid candy and sugary snacks as much as you possibly can.
3. Fluoride is Important
Although many parents are wary that fluoride is dangerous for their children, our dentist in Waterloo assures you that it is perfectly safe and beneficial for your child’s teeth. Fluoride is one of our best weapons against tooth decay, which is why most towns and cities have fluoridated public water supplies. Fluoride is especially useful in children because when teeth develop, it combines with the tooth enamel to form stronger, bacteria-resistant teeth.
4. Schedule Regular Dental Visits at Harmony Dental
Pediatric dentistry in Waterloo is a dental specialty that focuses on children’s oral health and development. As a parent, you must take advantage of this dentistry sector and take your child to visit our pediatric dentist near you as soon as their first teeth emerge or by the time they reach the age of one, whichever is sooner.
After their initial visit, your child should visit our pediatric dentist at least once every six months for checkups and cleanings. Only dental clinics have the tools and technology to remove plaque and tartar and detect early oral health issues before they become serious.
While cavities in children are very common and don’t typically cause problems if promptly addressed, untreated tooth decay can be a big problem for a child’s development. Not only are cavities painful, but they can also lead to poor academic performance and cause adult teeth to grow in the wrong way. If you follow the tips in this article, you will be on the correct path to preventing tooth decay and setting your child up for a lifetime of optimal oral health! If you have any further questions, please get in touch with our team at Harmony Dental today!