When you have a baby, every single day presents a new milestone that calls for dozens of pictures and adoring Facebook posts. From that first gummy smile to the first signs of a tooth, every bit of progress is exciting.
We all know how critical dental hygiene is to oral health and overall wellbeing, and this logic extends to your young baby even before teeth start to grow says Dennis Demirjian of Tampa dentist clinic Citrus Endodontics. This guide will help you determine exactly how you should be caring for your baby’s teeth to ensure the strongest oral health possible.
Wipe the Gums
Before any little white teeth start popping up, clean your baby’s mouth with a warm washcloth to make sure that no bits of milk or formula remain after feedings. There are even convenient rubbery devices available that fit over your finger like a thimble to wipe away residue.
Pay Close Attention to New Teeth
Even though baby teeth are eventually replaced by permanent teeth, they are every bit as important as adult teeth. Your baby’s tiny little teeth preserve space for her permanent teeth, help her chew, and determine how she will be able to form words. Without proper attention, the teeth can decay, cause gingivitis, and negatively impact the spacing of future teeth.
It’s time to start brushing as soon as that first tooth comes in. Use a soft toothbrush and water; toothpaste isn’t necessary until the age of two. Brush thoroughly around the entire mouth to model proper brushing behavior and eliminate all bacteria.
Begin Brushing with Fluoride Toothpaste
Experts recommend waiting until your baby is anywhere between 18 months and three years old before introducing toothpaste with fluoride, which is used to strengthen teeth but is not good to swallow. Begin with a tiny rice-sized bit of toothpaste and increase as your child gets older.
Following each meal with water can also help wash bacteria off of the teeth, and children should never go to bed with their bottles or Sippy cups. With just a few steps of precaution, you can ensure that your child grows up with beautiful white and healthy teeth without having to visit a tampa bay endodontist in the near future!