Many people think it’s not important to take care of baby teeth because they will eventually fall out. However, taking care of baby teeth is vitally important for several reasons. They play an essential role in your child’s development and health. Establishing a proper dental routine for your child from very early on is important to ensure their gums and teeth remain healthy.
At Big Apple Pediatric Dentistry, your child’s oral health, regardless of age, is important to us. From babies to teens, our goal is to provide comprehensive care and create a positive, comfortable experience for your child. We believe that preventive care is the key to long-term oral health success. If you are searching for a Ahwatukee pediatric dentist, Phoenix pediatric dentist, pediatric dentist Tempe, or a pediatric dentist Chandler AZ, we want to help. To schedule an appointment, call (602) 935-7427 or complete the online booking form.
Baby teeth set the foundation for your child’s oral health. The placement and position of baby teeth help guide emerging permanent teeth into the correct positions to establish a healthy, attractive smile. Baby teeth also aid in speech development as they help with proper pronunciation of words. Baby teeth also help with facial development by providing structure for proper jaw growth.
Babies have a full set of 20 primary teeth hiding in their gums, just waiting to erupt! Teeth often emerge between 6 and 10 months of age. However, some children may see teeth as early as three months or as late as 12 months. Usually, the first to appear are the central bottom teeth, but baby teeth can come in any order. By age 3, a child typically has all 20 baby teeth. Between the ages of 6 and 20, 32 adult teeth replace the baby teeth.
Proper dental care should begin early in a baby’s life, even before the teeth erupt. This helps to ensure a clean and healthy oral environment for their baby teeth to grow in. Parents can start this routine by gently wiping the gums with gauze soaked in warm water or a damp washcloth after every meal and at bedtime. Doing so will help prevent bacteria buildup, which could lead to tooth decay and other dental concerns. It also helps babies get used to healthy habits that are necessary throughout life.
As baby teeth come in, use a baby toothbrush (soft infant toothbrush) and a rice sized amount of fluoride toothpaste and brush twice a day. It’s also important to schedule regular dental visits for your child starting at one year of age or when the first tooth appears in the mouth. These early visits help to ensure healthy teeth and gums are developing properly and that any signs of decay are identified before they become a problem.
Water is essential for your child’s overall health and well-being, but it also plays an important role in protecting their baby teeth from decay (dental caries). Water is an effective tool in the fight against tooth decay. Fluoride, a naturally occurring mineral, has been added to drinking water since 1945 and continues to prove an invaluable resource for cavity prevention. This element protects teeth by forming a protective layer around the enamel and slowing or stopping cavities from forming. Fluoride also strengthens teeth by reactivating minerals in tooth enamel that were lost due to acid attacks from cavity-causing bacteria.
Sweet foods and sweet drinks are major sources of bacteria that can lead to tooth decay, so parents should limit sugary drinks and snacks as much as possible. Excessive daily snacking can cause plaque build-up and put your child’s teeth at risk for cavities.
Children should not go to bed with bottles that contain sugary drinks such as fruit juice or milk because the sugar from these drinks can settle around the teeth and cause tooth decay. A tooth brush should be the last thing in your child’s mouth before they go to sleep.
Cavities in baby teeth can be painful for your child and can cause infection if left untreated. Prolonged cavities can also affect how permanent teeth come in and lead to additional dental problems down the line.
Quick action is critical when treating baby tooth decay. Dental fillings are used to repair damage caused by cavities. In some cases, the baby tooth may need to be removed if it is too damaged. Ensuring primary teeth remain cavity-free can alleviate fear and discomfort associated with dental treatments.
Sucking on thumbs or pacifiers for long periods can lead to misalignment of teeth and other oral health concerns. While it is normal for a baby to find comfort in sucking their thumb or a pacifier, especially during times of stress, it’s important to start breaking this habit early. If you are having difficulty getting your child to stop, we can help you with tips and tricks on how to break the habit.
Keeping baby teeth healthy can be challenging, but with the proper information and guidance, you can ensure your child’s mouth stays cavity-free. Our friendly team is here to help you every step of the way! If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
If you are searching for a Ahwatukee pediatric dentist, Phoenix pediatric dentist, pediatric dentist Tempe, or a pediatric dentist Chandler AZ, we want to help. To schedule an appointment, call (602) 935-7427 or complete the online booking form.
We look forward to helping your child maintain a healthy, happy smile for years to come!
It is recommended that your child visits a pediatric dentist every six months for a check-up and professional cleaning. Regular dental visits allow us to identify and address any potential issues before they become bigger problems.
Brushing twice a day with fluoride toothpaste and flossing once a day should be part of your child’s daily oral hygiene routine. We recommend using a soft-bristled brush for children and encourage parents to help their children until they are old enough to brush and floss on their own.
If your child complains of a consistent toothache, it is important to bring them in for an appointment as soon as possible. Waiting can lead to more serious issues, such as infection or abscess, which could require more serious treatment.
The best way to protect your child’s baby teeth is by teaching them proper oral hygiene habits, such as brushing and flossing twice a day and limiting sugary snacks and drinks. Regular visits to the pediatric dentist are also important for early detection of any potential issues.