10 Ways to Prevent Tooth Decay in Kids
Cavities can occur even right after your baby sprouts his first teeth. However, with a little care, you can keep your baby’s teeth in perfect condition. Here are some simple steps to protect your child from tooth decay.
1. No juice or milk before bed
Today, more and more dentists warn that the number of children with cavities is increasing. Specialists believe that one of the reasons why this happens is because children have negative habits before bed, habits which are started by their parents. The first thing you can do to prevent tooth decay is to not give your baby juice or milk in the evening, before bed. If you want something to make them sleep better, try unsweetened chamomile tea.
2. Do not dip a pacifier in sugar
Some parents resort to a trick, which is very unhealthy for children, in order to make kids stop crying: they dip a pacifier in sugar or other sweeteners to soothe the baby. Experts say, however, that this leads to tooth decay, being a very inappropriate habit for little ones.
3. Keep a food diary
Experts advise parents to keep a food journal in which to write down absolutely everything their kids eat or drink. Sound complicated, but it is worth it. You will be surprised to learn how many carbohydrates and refined sugars your child consumes in a week. Such a journal can help you take action in terms of improving the diet of your child.
4. Caring for teeth
Taking care of your teeth is learned at an early age, being one of the important responsibilities of parents. Help your child learn a healthy oral hygiene. True, brushing teeth is not recommended for babies (brushes can scratch sensitive gums, so you have to wait a while to buy your child a special toothbrush), but you can clean your baby’s teeth with a small piece of wet cloth.
5. Brushing teeth and flossing
Children should not have to clean their teeth with floss until the age of 3, although they may begin to wash teeth at 2 years old. Until they are three, kids should have already been introduced to a routine of brushing teeth after breakfast and at night before bed. So make you’re your child sticks to it.
6. First visit at the dentist
Before taking the baby to a dentist, talk to him about the differences between a doctor and a dentist. Many children associate doctors with injections and are refusing to enter into a dental practice. Still, it’s better not fill their head with too much information – limit yourself to explaining about oral hygiene through fun games.
7. When do you have to make an appointment
It is important to make an appointment for your child’s first dental check at about six months after the appearance of his first tooth and by the age of one. After that, the dentist will recommend the next visits.
It is extremely important to establish a routine for your child in terms of brushing teeth. A dentist can teach you techniques that are suitable for the little ones.
9. Treating cavities
What to do if, however, if your child has cavities? Most parents are surprised to learn that children who have cavities need treatment in hospital under general anesthesia.
10. Set a proper example
Kids will feel like things are not fair if you make them brush their teeth every night, before bed. Set a proper example and do the same every night. It is an activity that you can do together and you can make it fun as well: since brushing usually takes 2-3 minutes, ask your child to count how many strokes he makes in this period. Or you can try to quiz him about oral hygiene.