Keeping a child healthy can often be challenging, and regular checkups are important for detecting problems early and providing parents with critical health information. Just as you would take your child to a pediatrician regularly, remember to consult a family dentist in Renton about your little one’s oral health. In addition to evaluating oral health, a family dentist can help you learn how to care for your child’s teeth.
Keeping an Infant’s Mouth Healthy
Good oral hygiene starts well before your baby’s primary teeth erupt. After feeding, wipe down your child’s gums with a clean, soft, and damp washcloth or gauze. This not only removes food, but also stimulates the gums.
Cleaning Your Baby’s First Teeth
The eruption of your baby’s first tooth is an important milestone. You’ll need to purchase a special toothbrush labeled for use for babies. These toothbrushes can comfortably fit inside your baby’s mouth. Family dentists generally recommend that you only purchase soft-bristled toothbrushes. A children’s dentist will also advise you to never put your baby to sleep with a bottle of formula, milk, juice, or any other product that contains sugar. This can easily lead to tooth decay, or a condition referred to as “bottle mouth.”
Feeding Your Child a Healthy Diet
Good nutrition is a cornerstone of healthy teeth. When your child begins to eat solid foods, try to avoid giving foods that contain added sugars and simple carbohydrates. Simple carbohydrates are found in processed products such as white bread. Instead, feed your child a nutritious diet in accordance with your pediatrician’s recommendations. Your pediatrician will likely recommend a variety of vegetables, fruits, whole grains, dairy products, and protein sources.
Seeing the Family Dentist
New parents are often confused about when their child needs his or her first dental check-up. The general rule of thumb is that children should be examined by a dentist as soon as their first tooth erupts or no later than their first birthday. Your family dentist can check your baby’s mouth for any potential problems and demonstrate how to clean your baby’s teeth. He or she can also provide advice about dental products, such as when it is safe for your child to use toothpaste and mouthwash.