As a parent, you will always put your child's medical health first. What about their dental health? You want the best for their teeth, but what do you need to do to help infant oral health care? Here's your primer to help your infant get the best start.
Care for the Baby Teeth
Just because your child loses his/her baby teeth doesn't mean those teeth can be ignored. They are the important foundation for the gums and help your child get into an oral health routine. Make sure you care for the teeth from day one.
Proper oral health starts before those first baby teeth even break through the gum line. Use damp gauze to clean the gums of bacteria until your child starts to sprout teeth. You will be able to move up to a toothbrush once the first tooth has pushed through.
Brush or use the cloth twice a day. When using the cloth, clean after each bottle, too.
Visit the Dentist
By the time your child has turned one, you should have visited the dentist at least once. This will help you learn more about oral health care for your infant and understand the best way to brush your little one's teeth.
The dentist will also be able to check for early signs of tooth problems. The development of the teeth and gums happens before your baby is born, so some of the signs may also appear at the same time. Your dentist will alert you to potential problems, both based on the look of the gums and your own dental health.
Avoid Sleeping With a Bottle
Don't get into the habit of letting your child fall asleep with the bottle. It may look cute and it is certainly convenient for a busy and tired parent, but it damages your child's oral health. The food particles remain in the mouth for prolonged periods of time, meaning bacteria is more likely to develop and cause gum disease or future tooth decay.
If your baby really needs something to suck for soothing, try a pacifier. You could also put water in a bottle to allow your child to suck on that. The water won't do damage to the teeth and gums that milk or formula will.
Look after your infant's teeth as much as possible. This should start from the first day to give the baby teeth the best chance. This will help to ensure your baby's mouth is ready for the permanent teeth in later life, and you'll encourage a tooth-brushing routine early on.
For more information, visit a clinic such as Legacy Dental Arts.