Helpful Tips to Keep Your Child’s Teeth Healthy

Do you need a pediatric dentist in Zebulon for your child? If you ask any parent, the answer is always a yes. Children need dentists to help keep their teeth strong and healthy. As parents, it is your responsibility to ensure that your children’s oral health in tip-top shape.   

We’ve compiled some helpful tips to preserve the beauty, function, strength, and integrity of your child’s teeth. It may seem complex, but as you continue to discipline them, over time, they will be able to incorporate these habits and make them a part of their lifestyle.    

mother and child brushing teeth before going to the the pediatric dentist Zebulon 

Valuable Tips to Keep Your Child’s Teeth Healthy   

#1 Teach Them the Value of Brushing and Flossing   

How old should you start brushing your child’s teeth? According to dental health experts, oral hygiene should start the moment your child’s first tooth surfaces. Interestingly, their teeth have already formed during the second trimester. Although they are still baby teeth and will eventually fall out, instilling good oral hygiene practices at a young age will make it easier for your children to adapt to them as they grow older.   

  • For babies, you can use a damp washcloth and slide it over their gums to keep bacteria away. Then, you can switch to an infant toothbrush and a grain-sized fluoride toothpaste with the ADA seal of acceptance as they get older. 
  • When your baby grows a couple of teeth touching each other, you can start flossing them. 
  • When your child reaches two years old, you can teach them how to spit. If your child doesn’t know how to spit, don’t give water so they will not swallow the toothpaste. 
  • Children three years old and above can use pea-sized fluoride toothpaste. 
  • Supervise children younger than eight years old when they brush to ensure that the strokes are correct and that they don’t swallow the toothpaste.   

individual getting toothpaste pediatric dentist Zebulon

#2 Take Them to a Pediatric Dentist   

According to the American Dental Association, you should take your child to a dentist by the time they turn one year old. During their visit, the pediatric dentist will introduce and explain the proper way to brush and floss their teeth and the importance of good oral hygiene.   

Studies show that taking your child to a dentist early will avoid dental anxiety and phobia. In addition, the more you take them to the dentist, the more accustomed they’ll be. But don’t just take them to any dentist. Instead, we highly encourage you to find a reliable and skilled pediatric dentist. Pediatric dentists specialize in treating children’s oral health.   

#3 Preventing Cavities   

The pediatric dentist may use topical fluoride for extra prevention for children who have a high cavity risk. Fluoride is a mineral that helps keep your child’s enamel strong so that their teeth can withstand dental cavities.    

Cavities form when plaque starts accumulating on the teeth. As your child eats and drinks, plaque, a yellowish biofilm teeming with bacteria, coats their teeth.   

Suppose your child has not developed a habit of brushing and flossing. In that case, the bacteria in plaque will feed off the sugars from the food they consume and release powerful acids that can cause the strong protective layer of their teeth, known as the enamel, to erode.   

Continuous erosion of the enamel will eventually compromise the integrity and structure of their teeth, leading to the formation of pits and holes, better known as cavities.   

Although cavities are common in children, the good news is that cavity formation is preventable. So how do you keep cavities at bay?   

  • Teach your children good oral habits while they are still young. For example, explain to your children the importance of brushing and flossing. It’s also crucial that you assist them while they brush and floss their teeth if they are below eight years old.
  • Use the proper brushing and flossing techniques.
  • Brush their teeth two times a day, 30 minutes after their meal. Waiting 30 minutes is vital to avoid brushing the acids from their food and drinks against their teeth. The ideal brushing time is two minutes. You can set a timer or find a 2-minute song that you can play while they brush their teeth. When the song is over, that’s the time they stop brushing.
  • Get fluoride treatments. Did you know that fluoride helps keep your enamel strong? When you regularly use fluoride, your teeth can better withstand acids. You can get fluoride from the water you drink, but you can get fluoride treatments from your dentist if your water isn’t fluoridated. But don’t overdo it because too much fluoride is also bad for your teeth as it causes discoloration.
  • Limit your child’s consumption of sugary and starchy foods like candies, chocolates, sweetbreads, etc. If you ever let them indulge, make sure you brush their teeth after.

illustration of tooth with cavity pediatric dentist Zebulon

Are You Looking for a Reliable Pediatric Dentist in Zebulon?   

You can help improve your child’s oral health by partnering with a skilled and experienced pediatric dentist. At Tyron Family Dentistry, we love building long-term relationships with our patients. We provide personalized and affordable dental services to help improve your smile and oral function. Call us today for an appointment. 

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