Isn’t it exciting to see your baby’s first tooth pop through the gums? As a parent, your job now is to take care of the dental needs of your child. Dental care should begin as soon as the first milk tooth appears, which usually happens around 6 months of age. Learning oral hygiene practices at a young age is important for long-term dental health.
Although they are temporary, it is a must to take care of your baby’s primary teeth.
The answer is as soon as the first tooth appears!
#1. Brushing should begin with the gums. To begin with, use a clean and wet gauze or muslin or a finger brush to wipe clean your baby’s gums and teeth. Simply put it around your finger, put a little toothpaste and run it around. That is sufficient to disturb the bacterial plaque.
#2. Once your baby’s teeth have erupted completely, you can graduate to a toothbrush. Always choose a soft brush with a small head and a large handle. Also, it is a good idea to check the packaging to see the age range the brush is designed for.
Make sure you replace your baby’s toothbrush after every 2-3 months. If the bristles start spreading out, the toothbrush needs to be changed.
#3. Choosing the right toothpaste can help reduce bacterial plaque that deposits on the teeth and leads to decay. Brush their teeth by using safe and natural toothpaste.
#4. Move the brush in soft and gentle circles to clean the outer sides of the teeth and gums. After this, move in circles on the inside of the teeth and gums. Brush back and forward. And finally, tell your kid to spit out the toothpaste.
Young kids have the habit of swallowing toothpaste when brushing, rather than spitting it out. The solution to this is using fluoride-free toothpaste.
Brush teeth thoroughly twice per day (morning and night). You can increase the amount of toothpaste as your kid crosses 3 years.
Kids are usually not very enthusiastic about brushing their teeth. With sore and tender gums, they also find brushing discomforting. For most moms, every morning begins with a struggle to motivate and force kids to brush. Carelessness in brushing teeth can lead to problems like cavity, gingivitis, periodontitis, gum bleeding etc.
Getting your kids to love brushing might not be an easy thing to do but is extremely important. Read these ways to make brushing enjoyable for kids:
#1. Let them explore: Allow your child to hold the brush and examine it at his/her own pace.
#2. Teach them in a fun way: The play way method is the best way to reach out to kids. Make a game.
Distract them. Sing a song while cleaning your kid’s teeth. For some kids, a little distraction is all that is needed.
#3. Educate them about Oral Hygiene: Educate your children about the importance of oral hygiene. Kids love to hear stories. Make up a story with your child’s favourite character and tell how he/she suffered due to ignorance of oral hygiene.
#4. Reward good habits: Acknowledge and praise your child when they do something praiseworthy. This is a great motivation for them.
#5. Practice what you preach: Children do what they see. Always model good behaviour in front of your kid. If you want your child to brush his teeth, make sure you do it every day in front of your child. Involve other family members too.
#6. Accessorize: You can easily get colourful and exciting brushing accessories in the market. If these can motivate your child to brush regularly, then why not?