If you are wondering when your child should first see the dentist, you are not alone. This is a very good question. The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends that you see a dentist when your child’s very first tooth appears or when the child turns a year old, whichever occurs first.
Prior to the first tooth coming in, you should still be caring for the child’s mouth and gums by using a piece of gauze soaked in water to wipe the child’s mouth out, focusing on the gums. This process should begin the day the child is born. You should complete this process every night to help keep the baby’s mouth clean. Additionally, this helps accustom your baby to brushing when it comes down the road.
In order to complete the gauze cleaning process, you should first wash your hands with soap and water. Wrap a piece of gauze around your finger. Most people use their index finger. Dip your finger in clean water. Gently rub the gauze over and around the gumline of your child.
As soon as the baby’s first tooth comes in, you need to begin the brushing process. Initially, you will need to brush for them. A soft bristled toothbrush with a small head designed for infants is what is recommended. For a child younger than 2 you use merely a small “smear” of toothpaste. You should be brushing their teeth twice daily.
Once a child turns two, you can upgrade the size of the brush, still using a soft bristled brush. The amount of toothpaste is increased to a pea size dab. You will be responsible for brushing your child’s teeth until they are 5 years old and can begin to take on the task responsibly.
If you have any further questions, please contact Dr. Terry Hopper Family Dentistry and Orthodontics in Austell.
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