The Different Stages of Oral Hygiene - Baby to Child

From the time they are a baby, your child will go through many different stages regarding their oral development. You may not think so, but developing great oral hygiene from the very first tooth that breaks through is vastly important. While you will be in charge of your child’s dental needs when they are very young, it is important that they grow up seeing just how crucial it is to have good oral hygiene. Learn as much as you can about how to take care of your child’s teeth from a qualified Houston pediatric dentist. That way, you’ll be prepared every step of the way!

Baby Care

Many parents don’t think they have to do anything for their baby when they haven’t developed any teeth yet, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. After your baby eats or drinks anything, use a soft, damp cloth to clean their gums. A gentle circular motion will help remove any formula, milk or baby food, as well as stimulate the gum tissue. Remember, even breast milk has some sugar in it, so it is important to remove it from the gums. When the first teeth start to arrive, switch to a soft, baby toothbrush. There are special toothbrushes that fit right over the parent’s finger that are perfect for the first few teeth, as they provide a better grip for mom or dad. Once more teeth come in, switch to a regular toothbrush, provided it is specifically made for a baby.

Preschooler’s Teeth

Your child should have all of his or her teeth by the time they are three years old, but don’t worry if this number is a little off. You can begin showing your child the best brushing techniques at this stage of their life. If you started brushing their teeth when they were a baby, the transition into doing it themselves should be much easier. Still, you will probably need to do it for them at first, until they understand how hard to brush and for how long. Make sure to use a toothpaste that is kid friendly and can accidentally be swallowed, since most children are still learning how to spit out the paste and can ingest some along the way. A Houston pediatric dentist can also help show your child the proper techniques to correct teeth brushing.

Older Children

After your child starts primary school, they should be well on their way to brushing their own teeth. A child of six or seven should have no problem brushing his or her teeth with some adult supervision. When your child hits the nine-year mark, they should be able to brush on their own without anyone supervising. Through it all, don’t forget to continue to book appointments with Bunker Hill Pediatric Dentistry. You always want to make sure a reputable professional is overseeing your child’s oral care to ensure their teeth are clean and healthy.