Keeping teeth and gums healthy is an important lifetime commitment – and no, it’s not just for having a nice smile in photos. While that’s part of it, maintaining your oral health through the years helps prevent toothaches, discomforts and more serious illnesses (from tooth decay or gum disease to cardiovascular disease).
Fortunately, there are many simple ways to keep teeth health at any age. See below for some important tooth tips to follow through the years!
Baby – Toddler:
- Just because baby teeth fall out doesn’t mean they don’t need to be cared for! Baby teeth are very important for your child’s health and development — like helping them chew or speak! That’s why it’s important to clean your baby’s mouth and gums even if no teeth are visible. Once teeth come in and through age three, brush with no more than a smear of toothpaste (grain of rice).
- Avoid putting baby to bed with anything but water. Baby bottle tooth decay occurs when teeth are exposed to sugar for long periods of time (drinks like milk and juice).
- Establish a dental home early! This helps eliminate fear of the dentist and allows us to monitor their development and spot any dental abnormalities. This visit should occur at the sight of their first tooth or by your child’s first birthday!
- Avoid sharing utensils with your child and while it may be tempting to clean off a pacifier that fell with your mouth, this should be avoided as well. Why? Because cavity causing bacteria can be passed through saliva!
Children – Teens:
- For children ages three to six, you should supervise brushing and only give them a pea-sized amount of toothpaste. Start teaching them not to swallow the paste and to brush for two full minutes!
- Once your child has two teeth that touch, it’s time to begin flossing daily. Getting them into this habit early will help them continue this routine later in life.
- Don’t skip on fluoride treatment! Fluoride is a natural substance that helps strengthen teeth and prevent decay! We include this with every pediatric dental treatment.
- Make sure a mouthguard is part of your athlete’s uniform! A custom fit mouthguard designed by Adelberg Montalvan is the most comfortable fitting, providing optimum protection and improved performance.
- Keep your nutrition in check! The first signs of poor nutrition often show up in your oral health. Choose smile saving snacks often, no matter the age.
- It’s important to maintain dental routines – from keeping up with brushing and flossing to making sure you visit the dentist every six months. Being on top of dental health should become second nature, like showering or changing clothes!
Here’s to a lifetime of healthy smiles! For more tooth tips, explore our blog or give us a call!
To continue keeping your family’s smiles bright, schedule your next appointment with us today! We specialize in caring for children’s teeth in a comfortable and welcoming environment, in three different Long Island locations.