As a parent, you might be wondering about the importance of oral health for baby teeth. Even though baby teeth do fall out eventually, if you and your child aren’t practicing good oral care habits at home that can encourage the development of cavities. According to the CDC, untreated cavities can lead to problems in school and difficulties with eating, playing, and learning. Plus, if your child loses their tooth too soon, it can lead to the development of crooked or misaligned adult teeth. Because cavities are highly preventable, we’ll be discussing ways you can prevent cavities in children.

Cleaning Your Child’s Teeth to Prevent Cavities

Whether your child is first getting their tooth or is finally brushing their teeth on their own, it’s important you have the right techniques to ensure proper oral health. We have a few tips for you to keep in mind: 

  1. If your child’s tooth hasn’t erupted yet, wipe down their gums tooth with a damp cloth or cause. Doing so will clean off any bacteria in their mouth.
  2. If your child is under the age of three years old and their teeth have started to come in, gently brush their teeth with a grain of rice amount of toothpaste. Be sure to use fluoride toothpaste, which protects your child from cavities. Once two teeth start to touch, floss between their teeth gently. 
  3. If your child is three and above, they can start brushing their teeth on their own with a pea-sized amount of toothpaste. Show them the importance of brushing in circular motions and at an angle towards their gums to ensure thorough cleaning. Be sure they also floss once a day. We’d be happy to demonstrate flossing techniques at your child’s next appointment!

Focus on Good Nutrition to Avoid Cavities

Nutrition has a significant impact on your child’s oral health. If your child enjoys too many sugary treats and drinks, that can increase their risk for cavities. Any kind of sticky sweet is especially dangerous as they stick to the enamel of your child’s teeth for a lengthier period of time. We recommend a diet rich in:

  1. Fruits and vegetables play an important role in maintaining a healthy smile. Crunchy vegetables act like nature’s floss because of how they clean out bacteria. Meanwhile, fibrous-rich fruits and vegetables work at getting rid of plaque. Other produce high in water like melons or cucumbers can wash away the bacteria in your child’s mouth.
  2. Healthy grains like whole wheat or oatmeal are good for your child’s gum health. Plus, it also increases their heart health too. 
  3. Calcium-rich foods strengthen your child’s tooth enamel. So any kind of dairy or even dark, green leafy vegetables can provide calcium.

Of course, make sure your child is also drinking plenty of water and limit the number of sugary drinks. Water washes away bacteria in your child’s mouth which keeps bacteria at bay. If you need extra tips, we’d be happy to offer nutritional help at your next appointment!

One of the best ways to prevent cavities in children is by taking them to the dentist every six months for a cleaning and exam. Also, being a good example is important too! Children watch as much as they listen, so make sure you are practicing good oral hygiene too.

To visit Sprout and Bloom Pediatric Dentistry in Littleton, CO, call us today at 720-615-6087 to schedule an appointment or schedule online.