How to Overcome Dental Issues in Young Children?

Many parents are misled into thinking that minor dental issues in baby teeth don’t matter, as they’ll be lost in no time, anyway.  But that is not true!  Dental problems in baby teeth can negatively impact the dental health of permanent teeth that come after, and lead to serious dental issues later in life!

One of the major health issues in young children is dental problems!  Cavities start as early as age two, in young children.  By age five, nearly 50% of children have one or more cavities. How can we overcome these dental issues in young children and ensure healthier lives for them?  Here are some of the ways to address this issue.

Teaching Good Dental Habits

Following good dental habits early on results in healthy teeth in young children.  When you coach young children these habits, soon they will adopt them as part of their daily routine. If the child is too young to follow these habits by himself, your supervision and help become most important!   

Brushing Teeth

As soon as baby teeth appear, a child should be helped to brush his teeth twice a day.  Make this routine a fun game to play with your child in the mornings and just before bed! 

The amount of fluoride toothpaste used should be grain-sized when you start.  His toothbrush should be a child’s toothbrush with soft bristles, as others might damage his gum and the baby teeth.  At age 3, increase the amount of toothpaste to pea-size.  Try different flavours of fluoride toothpaste, until you find one that he likes!  Teaching him not to swallow the toothpaste, but rinse and spit it out, as well as using proper brushing motions that help to clean all the teeth thoroughly also become serious responsibilities of the caregiver.

Regular Dental Checkups

All children should have consulted a pediatric dentist and established an on-going relationship with him by the end of the first year.  The bayside dentists will do a good job of that, if you happen to live in and around Bayside, Victoria.  The dentist will regularly check your children’s teeth, gums etc., to ensure normal development and highlight any issues found. 

Teeth-Friendly Diet

Almost all children love sweets!  But, sugar is the biggest villain to spoil your child’s dental health!  When children’s teeth are exposed to sugary food such as toffee, gum and dried fruit for long and very frequently, cavities begin to appear.  Here are some tips to control this damage;

  • Do not allow sugary drinks in a sipping cup for prolonged periods.
  • Limit your child’s access to sweets.
  • Provide a diet of nutritious food, rich in Calcium and Vitamin D (to increase the Calcium absorption) that includes tofu, orange juice, green vegetables, dairy food etc.
  • Limit your child’s exposure to TV advertisements of confectioneries.
  • Avoid sodas and sweetened juices that leave teeth awash in sugar.
  • Avoid cereals and popcorn that leave a residue on teeth that can be converted to sugar by bacteria.
  • Be aware of your child’s eating habits and monitor them.
  • Keep stocking your home with low-sodium, low-sugar and low-fat products to make your children less susceptible to more sugary, salty or greasy food.
  • Brush your child’s teeth after such sugary food intake.