Dental Care in Infants and Toddlers
Often time's parents forget about dental care for their infants and toddlers. While most infants and toddlers don't require much dental car, it is still important that parents keep an eye on their baby's oral health.
Babies start to get their first teeth when they are around 4-6 months old. Sometimes babies do not get any teeth until they are a year old. This is rare, but does happen and it perfectly okay. Whenever your baby cuts his first teeth is just fine. In fact if you have ever seen a baby cutting teeth before you may be happy to wait a little longer!
For parents a baby cutting teeth can be a nightmare. Babies don't have an easy time with it either. Cutting teeth is painful. Parents can try to ease the child's pain by giving them a pain reliever. If parents do decide to give their infants a pain reliever, they should check with their doctor to find out the proper dose. Parents can also try a topical pain reliving gel to ease their child's pain.
Babies often drool when they are cutting teeth. The drooling can make for wet tee shirts. Many parents find that it is easier to just keep a bob on the baby when he or she is teething. Babies also like to chew on things when they are cutting teeth. You can try a frozen washcloth to ease the baby's pain. Rubber teething toys work well for teething as well.
Once a baby gets his first tooth is when his lifelong dental care will begin. For the most part the first teeth will be easy to maintain. The important thing is that parents do not put their baby to bed with a bottle. When a baby falls asleep with a bottle, the milk is likely to sit inside the baby's mouth. This will cause bacteria to build up around the teeth and could cause dental problems for the child in the future.
Caring for Infants Teeth
There is no need for parents to brush an infant's teeth. They are easily kept clean by running a wet cloth over them two times a day. Most parents opt for in the morning and in the evening, however that doesn't work for every situation. Parents should set a schedule that works well for them.
Once the baby turns a year old it is time to start teaching them to brush their teeth. This is easier said than done. The best thing you can do is give the child a tooth brush and have a toothbrush yourself. Take turns brushing the teeth.
Since the concept of rinsing and spitting will be too difficult for a 12 month old baby to grasp, you should use fluoride free toothpaste. Babies will get enough fluoride from water. If there is no fluoride in your water, talk to your child's doctor about a fluoride supplement.
Once a child reached the age of 3 they will have most of their primary teeth. This is when the child should see a dentist. Make going to the dentist a fun experience for the child. If the toddler is scared it can be helpful to allow them to watch their parents getting their teeth looked at by a dentist first.
At a child's first dental appointment, the dentist will could the teeth. He will also check to make sure that they have all come in properly. A hygienist will likely polish the teeth. Parents may have the options of getting a fluoride treatment for their child. Your dentist can explain more about fluoride treatments and their benefits and disadvantages.
Remember just like anything, good oral health starts early. Take care of your babies teeth from an early age. Start teaching them when they are young how to care for their teeth and make it part of their daily routine. Taking these steps now will prevent poor dental health in the future.
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