Essential Dental Tips for Parents
A recent UK study has revealed that at least a quarter of parents don’t think it matters if their child develops cavities in their baby teeth, with many admitting to a lack of knowledge when it comes to oral health in children. Many parents wait until their children have all their milk teeth before taking them to their first dental appointment, with over 1,000 parents with children under the age of 13 surveyed.
A common misconception among parents is that baby teeth don’t really matter. However, they are essential to our speech development as well as maintaining a space for adult teeth to erupt into. In some cases, decay can lead to infection with can cause discomfort and possible damage to the permanent teeth below. This means it’s vital for parents to regularly take their children to the dentist as soon as their first baby tooth appears or when they turn one.
The study also found that more than half of parents stop helping their children brush their teeth too early, with many more admitting to confusion over fluoride in toothpaste. The report revealed that 1 in 10 parents often give their child a drink of fruit juice right after brushing their teeth or before going to bed. Many parents also assume that a glass of milk after brushing and before bed is perfectly ok, however we now know that milk can cause tooth decay due to the natural sugars it contains. Maintaining a regular oral care routine along with a good brushing technique can help set your child up for a lifetime of good oral hygiene.
- Take your child to the dentist one their first tooth comes through.
- Opt for water should they need a drink before bed.
- Give your child a soft, small headed toothbrush.
- Be sure that they brush for two minutes.
- Make sure your child brushes at least twice daily – first thing in the morning and last thing before bed.
- Use a fluoridated toothpaste – it can help strengthen your child’s enamel.
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