Starting Young – The Importance of Establishing Good Oral Care Habits in Children
It is extremely important that parents or guardians establish good oral care habits for children. After all, children are like sponges. They absorb the information around them and integrate it into their lives as they grow older. If you establish good oral care habits at a young age, your children will continue those habits as they grow older.
The question many parents ask us here at Chehalis Dental Care is “what type of oral habits should I be establishing”.
Of course, parents should be teaching their children how to properly brush and floss, but many parents are unsure when they should be teaching these skills or what they should be doing. We have created a brief outline that highlights some of the oral care habits parents should be establishing for their children.
Good Oral Care Habits Start Almost from Birth
Many parents are surprised to discover they should be establishing good oral care habits almost the moment their child is born. Dental experts recommend that from birth until about 12 months, parents should be regularly cleaning their child’s gums before and after feedings. This helps remove bacteria that may accumulate in the mouth.
Parents are encouraged to use a soft gauze or washcloth to wipe down a child’s gums. Just add a little water to the cloth or gauze and wipe the gums down after breakfast and before bed.
Start Brushing and Flossing at the First Sign of a Tooth
Parents should start brushing and flossing at the first sign of a tooth. Typically, this will occur between 12 months and 24 months.
When brushing, it is important to keep the following things in mind:
- Use a soft bristled brush
- Use toothpaste without fluoride unless otherwise noted
- Brush all surface areas of the teeth and the tongue
It is important to establish good oral care habits in children at an early age. Chehalis Dental Care can help guide parents in what should be taught when it comes to oral care.
Call our office today to schedule an appointment with our caring dentist.