There’s so much to think about and look out for when you bring a new baby home. Whether it’s your first, or you’re bringing home a little brother or sister, visits to the dentist and dental care are probably the last thing on your mind!
But healthy teeth and gums are important to everyone’s overall well being. Here are a few tips to get your little ones started on a lifetime of good dental health and habits.
Clean your baby’s mouth every day
Start taking care of his teeth before they ever appear! Gently wipe his gums twice a day with a soft, moist cloth or gauze. It will help keep any milk or food residue from creating bacteria in his mouth.
Begin brushing when the first tooth appears
That first darling tooth needs as much care as all his permanent teeth later on. Begin with a small, soft toothbrush and a tiny drop of non-fluoride toothpaste (more on this below). Use a circular motion to very gently brush his teeth (or tooth!) and gums.
No fluoride before 6 months
Fluoride is an important part of keeping our teeth cavity-free, but introducing it too early can cause permanent problems, such as mottled or stained teeth. Use non-fluoride toothpaste, and reconstitute your formula with non-fluoridated water until your infant is at least a year old, and then be careful not to overload him with fluoride. When your child is older, Dr. Rick Rodig can apply fluoride treatments if necessary.
Limit the sweet drinks
We don’t have to tell you this but we’ll say it anyway! Limiting sweet drinks like juices will give your child a good start on healthy eating habits and also help prevent decay. And of course, you don’t want to leave a bottle filled with juice or anything but water with your baby for any period of time. This also gives harmful bacteria a chance to start growing.
You have a lot to think about raising a family, but don’t forget your own dental care. If you’re due for a checkup call our dental office in Modesto today!