Healthy teeth in children should not be overlooked as it contributes largely to the overall health of a child.
When a child’s teeth is damaged, the child will have a very difficult time eating which in turn can lead to poor nutrition.
Usually, the first set of teeth a child would have is called the milk teeth or baby teeth ( its also called primary teeth). This milk teeth hold spaces for the permanent teeth which develops later in life and hence, are very important.
So how should you care for your child’s teeth?
1. Ensure Good Oral Hygiene
Just like adults, kids need good oral hygiene and the best approach is to start as early as possible with your child.
Immediately you notice your baby’s teeth has started developing, start cleaning them with a soft cloth or soft toothbrush.
Clean your child’s teeth after each meal your baby has and last thing before sleeping at night. Continue this routine till your child is up to the age of 6 or 7 years, by which time your child should have learnt how to brush unassisted.
Also teach your child to floss as its important in ensuring good oral hygiene in your child.
Mothers often complain about how difficult it is to get kids to brush. Simple tips to help get your child in the habit of regularly brushing are:
- Get your child a toothbrush of his favorite color or cartoon character (Click here). Your child will always look forward to using this brush.
- Sing to your child while brushing. They will often times try brushing while mimicking the song they like.
- Make funny faces at your child and make your child smile while trying to brush. They will gladly follow along.
Your child’s diet plays a major role in maintaining good oral hygiene. Keep sugary foods away from your child as much as possible. Do not give your child candies, soda drinks, chocolates, candies or anything laced with so much sugar.
However, if your child does have sugary food or snack, you should brush his teeth as soon as possible.
Ensure your child takes enough milk for calcium needed in growing strong teeth.
When giving water to your child, clean tap water is preferable to bottled water as tap water contains flouride necessary for good oral health (bottled water has little to no flouride content).
3. Be Aware Of Your Child’s Activities
If your child is very active and always engages in sporting activities make sure your child wears a mouth guard.
A mouth guard is a mouth protector made of plastic. It protects the tooth and lips thereby protecting your child from oral injuries during play and sporting activities.
4. Take Your Child For Oral Checkup Regularly
Regular visit to the dentist is important for your child’s health. It is recommended that you take your child to see the dentist as soon as they become a year old. When your child starts to see the dentist early, anomalies within your child’s teeth will also be detected early.
Do consult your dentist when you notice the following symptoms in your child
- Gum swelling and pain
- Tooth and mouth infection
- Tooth fracture
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