Congratulations on having a baby! What a wonderful time in your life. As a first time parent, this can be scary. You want nothing but the best for your child, including healthy teeth. But what do you need to know in order to keep your baby’s brand new teeth healthy? Do you even need to clean a baby’s teeth? All of these questions are valid, and we are here to help answer them for you.
General Dentistry for Children in Indianapolis
A good rule of thumb is that your child should see a dentist by their first birthday. By this time, your baby has gotten their infant teeth in. By establishing a dental home for your baby, this will provide them with consistency in their dental health as well as comfort later in life. Children will usually dislike dental cleanings at first, but by providing them with a doctor that they see on a regular basis, they will build a relationship and feel comfortable with them for more pleasant visits in the future.
Infant Teeth—Are They Even Important?
Your baby has been doing nothing but bottle or breastfeeding for nourishment. A big concern for their teeth is Early Childhood Caries, also known as baby bottle tooth decay or nursing caries. Brand new teeth are at a large risk for tooth decay. By taking your child to a general dentistry for children in Indianapolis as early as the first tooth eruption, you are providing them with preventative care that is necessary to stop tooth decay. Early dental visits establish a good health routine for your child and help them to smile brighter!
Baby Teeth Cleaning
Infant toothbrushes are relatively inexpensive and should definitely be used as soon as birth. You can clean your child’s gums with a soft cloth, too. At the very first sign of teeth, you can begin cleaning with a small amount of infant fluoride toothpaste. This can be done twice daily. As your child grows to be about 2-5 years of age, you can increase the amount of toothpaste and assist them with teeth cleaning. A pea-sized amount is just enough.
The First Visit
The first visit to a dentist can be scary for your child. Remember their first haircut? Introduce your child to the dentist in a formal way to make them feel welcomed. Only after the visit, explain to your child that they will receive a pencil or a sticker for being good. If you tell them beforehand, they may question why they need a reward in the first place. Rewards are a great way to help your child see that their good behavior is appreciated, but don’t hint that there is something bad about the dentist.
Have the dentist show your child the tools he or she will use beforehand. Let them be familiarized with the tools so there are no surprises. Try not to provide too much information, though, as this could cause too many questions and unnecessary anxiety within your child. Keep it simple and fun!
Overall, bringing your child to a general dentistry for children in Indianapolis as soon as possible will provide them with a dental home and make them more comfortable for the coming times. Be prepared for your child to dislike it at first, but by establishing good practices they will eventually feel happy in the chair! Prime Smile offers quality services for your child, don't hesitate to stop by our offices or give us a call!