Service Provided by:
At Home Dental

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Service Provided by:
At Home Dental

Children’s Oral Health

Birth to 3 years old

It is important to keep teeth healthy from the very beginning, since they are developmentally important for a child’s speech, eating, smile and appearance. Your baby’s first tooth comes through around the age of six months, but it can be earlier or later than this. It is crucial to start brushing their teeth as soon as they come through to protect them against decay and allow their adult teeth to fully develop before they erupt. At first, your baby may find toothbrushing a bit strange, but they will soon get used to the soothing feeling.

If you haven’t done so already, wean your baby off their dummy. Although dummies are reassuring to small children, they also encourage an open bite, which is where teeth move aside to make room for the dummy. This is non-favourable and why babies should be weaned off their dummies by the age of twelve months. 

It’s never too early to start caring for your child’s teeth.

3 to 5 year olds

Your child will be on their way to having all 20 baby teeth. As more teeth come through, it is important for your child to develop a good brushing routine that ensures all surfaces of their teeth are brushed thoroughly each time. It is also important to consider how much sugar is in their diet now that they are attending nursery or school and discovering lots of new foods and drinks. Concentrate on reducing the amount of sugar your child consumes as this will prevent tooth decay.

5 to 12 year olds

Your child will have a mixture of both baby and adult teeth. Their oral health and nutrition is important for their general health, mental and social well-being, and educational development. Young children need energy from food to help them grow and keep them active. It is important to encourage healthy eating by providing nutritious meals along with the right kind of snacks.

Visiting the Dentist

Children should start visiting a dentist as soon as their first teeth come through. It gives them the chance to get used to the dentist environment, which helps them to feel comfortable and encourages them to become cooperative around a dentist as they get older. It also makes them less likely to put off dental appointments in the future.

Look after your child’s teeth with a few simple rules!

  • Brush teeth and gums at least twice daily; in the morning and last thing at night.
  • For children under three years of age use a smear of toothpaste on the brush. Use toothpaste containing at least 1,000 parts per million (ppm) fluoride.
  • For children aged three years and above, use a pea-sized amount. Use toothpaste containing at least 1,350 parts per million (ppm) fluoride.
  • Children should be supervised and encouraged not to swallow toothpaste while brushing.
  • ‘Spit, don’t rinse’ after brushing – this gives the toothpaste time to work and protect teeth.
  • Keep food and drinks containing sugar to mealtimes only.
  • Plain milk and tap water are the safest drinks for teeth.
  • Dental check-ups are important, and everyone should have regular dental visits.
  • Use sugar-free medicine. Some medicines contain sugar to make them more palatable to children, however, this high content of sugar is not good for their teeth.

Where to next?

Contact Children’s Oral Health

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