Raising a toddler can be extremely overwhelming especially for new moms and dads. As parents, we try to do everything that we can – from encouraging them to eat their first bite of pumpkin (yay!), potty training and teaching them how to share their stuff with other kids.
We also have to deal with their overall well being including their nutrition, quality of sleep and how they cope with sickness.
Amidst all these, oral care often takes a back seat, only to be revisited when our little ones experience their first ever toothache or dental emergency. With this in mind, we have gathered six practical oral care tips for parents like you.
- Take good care of your toddler’s baby teeth. Your toddler’s baby teeth serve as “space savers” for their adult teeth and the early loss of milk teeth can cause problems with space or the way the teeth and jaw come in contact with each other.
- Brush your toddler’s teeth with the right amount of fluoride toothpaste in the morning and before putting them to bed. Begin brushing with a soft toothbrush as soon as the first tooth erupts.
- Do not give your babies or toddlers sugary drinks at bedtime. Allowing formula, breastmilk or fruit juices to pool in your child’s mouth can lead to a serious condition called Early Childhood Caries (ECC). When ECC is left untreated, the infection can become serious leading to high fever, admission into the hospital, emergency room visits, dental trauma and a much higher cost of treatment.
- Don’t leave your toddler with a sippy cup, unless it only contains water. Sippy cups are used to help your child switch from the bottle to a cup. It shouldn’t be used for a long period of time – it’s neither a feeding bottle nor a pacifier. When a child take sips of fruit juices and other sweetened fluids for extended periods of time, they are more exposed to decay
- Let your dentist know if you notice that your toddler constantly breathes through the mouth. Mouth breathing reduces the salivary flow and dries out the mouth which can increase your child’s risk of gingivitis, malocclusion, periodontitis and bad breath
- Take your child to a dentist regularly.
Simply put, PREVENTION is way EASIER & BETTER than CURE