In celebration of National Children's Dentist Month, I am thrilled to provide you with a few answers I wish I had known as a new mom. Your smile is the prettiest thing you can wear, it's oh-so important to take care of it from the getgo! As a new mom a few years back, I had no clue when to start making those bi-annual visits, what to help with or what to let her do on her own when it came to brushing and flossing. We take our teeth and smiles very serious around here, so I am hoping you can too!
On social media, I asked what questions you had in regards to your chompers and you eagerly responded. So I've partnered with Kids Care Dental and Orthodontic to help answer some of those questions you had. "Dr. G" is Grace's favorite (shown below) and has graciously answered some of your questions.
Top 8 Questions Answered!
1. Is it a problem if my child sucks on a pacifier for too long?
Yes. Prolonged pacifier use can negatively affect the growth of your child’s palate and the positioning of their teeth. During your dental exam, the dentist will give you input on whether or not pacifier use or a thumb habit is affecting your child’s teeth.
2. When should my child start regular dental visits (what age)
By their 1st birthday.
3. How long should my child be brushing for? How long should I (parent) be brushing for?
It should take 1-2 minutes (depending on how many teeth they have) to thoroughly clean all the plaque off. I recommend parents continue to assist their children with brushing until around age 7 (or when they are old enough to perform complex tasks like tying their shoes on their own).
4. Is it safe for my child to have dental x-rays?
Yes. With current x-ray technology, the amount of radiation exposure that occurs with dental x-rays is very low (typically less than your child would receive naturally from the sun spending an hour at the beach).
5. Is it an emergency situation if my child knocks out their baby tooth?
It depends on the situation. It’s always a good idea to have your child examined by their dentist anytime your child experiences trauma resulting in tooth loss.
6. If my child’s tooth is loose, should we pull it?
Yes (if it’s a baby tooth, of course). Once you can see the tooth moving quite a bit, it’s generally good to remove it sooner than later. Having really loose teeth present in your child’s mouth will cause discomfort when eating food and it will make brushing teeth more challenging.
7. What toothpaste do you recommend?
Fluoridated toothpaste is recommended (labeled as “anti-cavity” by most manufactures). Pick any flavor that your children will enjoy. It is recommend to start using fluoride toothpaste when the first tooth erupts. Because infants will swallow it, only use a grain of rice sized amount or less for each brushing. Then, work your way to a pea sized amount as they get older and are able to spit (which is around 3 years old for most kids).
8. When should we start flossing and how often?
It’s never too early to introduce flossing to your children. But you should absolutely start doing it regularly when you see adjacent teeth touching each other. During their dental exams, your dentist will identify which teeth need to be flossed on a regular basis.
Thanks to Kids Care, we have an awesome giveaway happening on social media--enter to win a sonic care toothbrush, Bluetooth headphones, an adult teeth whitening kit and more!
Thanks for reading!
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*Thanks to Kids Care Dental and Orthodontics for sponsoring this post*