Child's dentistry essentially starts even before the child is born. The development of a baby's teeth depends on the way the mother takes care of her diet and other health matters during her pregnancy. Eating a balanced diet with proper amount of vitamins and minerals is the first rule of pre-birth child's dental care. In addition, pregnant women should undergo regular dental examination and treatment for any cavities and/or gum diseases.
The child's first teeth, called primary teeth, usually appear through the gums when the child is about 6 months old. By 3 years of age, all of the child's 20 primary teeth should appear. Between 6 and 11 years of age, children loose their primary teeth. The first permanent teeth i.e. molars usually appear behind the primary teeth at the age of about 6 years. The last of the molars usually erupt between the age 12 years and 21 years.
The best dental care for children starts before their permanent teeth appear. Some important guidelines are listed below:
In many areas, tap water carries added fluoride for teeth protection. Seek the advice of a dentist to see whether to use fluoride supplements for yourself and your child. Also, if you use your own well water, have it tested for its fluoride content.
Nutritious foods play a key role in maintaining healthy gums and development of strong teeth. These foods include whole grains, vegetables, and fruits. Foods that are high in sugar and processed carbohydrates, e.g. pastries, pasta, white bread etc. should be avoided.
Children should not be allowed to use mouthwashes that contain alcohol. Children aged six years or older can use a mouthwash containing fluoride provided that they do not swallow it.
Smoking increase the risk of gum disease and oral cancer, it also increases the risk of complications and infection after dental surgery and can delay healing. It’s recommended to keep your children away from active and passive smoking from an early age.
Children are prone to injure their teeth and gums in play. Educate yourself on dental emergency and safety measures for preventing loss of teeth.
Thumb sucking during childhood encourages the front teeth to deform and protrude away from the natural arch of the gum line. If your child continues to such his or her thumb, Healthy Smiles can assist you to help them drop the habit. Book an appointment with our friendly team today.
Keep in mind the following points regarding brushing and flossing teeth: