Your baby’s teeth will typically start to erupt when he or she is around 6-8 months.
- Once teeth start to erupt, brush them with a soft baby toothbrush twice a day.
- Most children will benefit from the use of fluoridated toothpaste.
- The American Dental Association and American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry affirm that applying a small smear of fluoride- containing toothpaste will strengthen and clean the teeth.
- If you use a fluoridated toothpaste, use a very small amount (about the size of a piece of rice) so if swallowed, it will be safe for your baby.
During your office visit, Doctors Paquin and Kiang will assess the cavity risk for your child and will provide an individual recommendation for professional fluoride applications and/or fluoride use at home.
Establishing a “dental home”
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), the American Dental Association (ADA), and the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) all recommend establishing a “Dental Home” for your child by one year of age. Children who have a dental home are more likely to receive appropriate preventive and routine oral health care.
You can make the first visit to the dentist enjoyable and positive. If old enough, your child should be informed of the visit and told that the dentist and their staff will explain all procedures and answer any questions. The less to-do concerning the visit, the better.
It is best if you refrain from using words around your child that might cause unnecessary fear, such as needle, pull, drill or hurt. Pediatric dental offices make a practice of using words that convey the same message but are pleasant and non-frightening to the child.
As you begin to introduce foods to your child, keep in mind that high cavity risk dietary habits have been shown to be established by 12 months of age, and continue throughout childhood.
- When it comes to your child’s diet, make sure they don’t fall asleep with a bottle or sippy cup because the natural sugar from milk, formula, juice, and even breast milk, if left on the teeth for extended periods of time, can cause tooth decay.
- As per the recommendation of the Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, bring your child in to see Dr. Paquin and Dr. Kiang as soon as their first tooth erupts and no later than their first birthday.
Going to the dentist should be fun and easy! Cavities are preventable and we want to help parents and children have a great experience and look forward to coming in to see us!