January 28, 2023

Parents have a lot of questions regarding their child’s dental health. Questions like, “When should they start flossing,” “Do they need braces,” or “How often should they see a pediatric dentist in Morton, IL? It can be challenging to decide your child’s dental care needs.  

The best way to know is to ask their pediatric dentist directly during a consultation. If you want to do your research, we suggest you visit credible sources for information instead of random online forums. Reliable sources are backed up by science and evidence-based studies, assuring you that the information you get is factual.  

A kid smiling to a pediatric dentist in Morton, IL

Pediatric Tips to Help Keep Your Child’s Teeth Strong  

When Should Children Start Brushing Their Teeth?

Among the most commonly asked questions are when their kids should start brushing their teeth. You’ll be surprised to learn that dental care habits start even before the first tooth erupts.  

Yes, even though their teeth haven’t erupted yet, it doesn’t mean they’re not there. Did you know that teeth start forming during the second trimester of pregnancy?  

Before your child starts teething, clean their gums with a clean, damp washcloth to remove bacteria. When they start to have teeth, use a toothbrush appropriate to their age. You may add a tiny amount of fluoride toothpaste (the size of a grain of rice). Ensure that the toothpaste brand has the ADA seal of acceptance.  

When Should They See a Dentist?  

Parents also wonder when they should start taking their kids to the dentist. The American Dental Association recommends that children should start visiting their dentist by the time they turn one year old.  

During these visits, you will learn how to brush and floss your child’s teeth properly. These appointments also allow your pediatric dentist to educate parents and children about healthy dental habits that will help keep their teeth and gums strong and healthy throughout their lifetime.    

Another advantage of seeing a pediatric dentist is you will be taught how to handle a wide range of dental problems. During these checkups, you will also know if your child needs to see a dental specialist, like an oral surgeon or orthodontist.  

How Can You Protect Your Child’s Teeth Against Cavities?  

Cavities are holes and pits that destroy the structure of your tooth’s enamel. It occurs when bacteria and food debris linger on your child’s teeth, forming a sticky film called plaque. The bacteria in plaque will release harmful acids that soften and erode your teeth until cavities form.  

  • To protect your child’s teeth against cavities, we suggest you instill good oral habits while they are young. Teach them to brush and floss their teeth daily using a soft-bristled toothbrush with a size appropriate to age and fluoride-based toothpaste accepted by the ADA.  
  • Avoid sugary and sweet food and drinks. What you feed your child can make their teeth healthy or cause cavities. Dentists recommend limiting or avoiding sugary treats like candies, fruit juices, and cakes as much as possible. If they have them, ensure they rinse their mouth with water or brush their teeth to remove the sugars.  
A pediatric dentist in Morton, IL checking on a patient

Consult With a Pediatric Dentist in Morton, IL

It can be difficult to do everything on your own, so you must seek help and assistance from a trusted pediatric dentist regarding your child’s oral health. At Smalltown Dental, we provide routine dental checkups and customized dental treatments for your little ones. Contact us for an appointment.  

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