Let’s face it. There’s no denying we need our teeth to be as healthy as possible. Who would want to live on the planet without the benefit of a good set of pearly whites? That can certainly mean putting ourselves on the losing end of the dining table. Unfortunately, if you’re not careful, you could be putting your child at a huge disadvantage when it comes to teeth.
Indeed, babies, once born, need all the loving they can get. And teeth should be part and parcel of that package. Think about it. If we don’t make good choices for them while they’re still young, they could be at a point of no return when their teeth grow to adulthood. The top of this list is knowing at what age should start teeth care start for your baby. Quite naturally, many parents are predisposed to think teeth care should start when the child has teeth. And there’s the rub.
Of course, the first step in giving your baby the best teeth care on the planet is due diligence. Knowing what to do and when to do it should be foremost on your mind. In short, you need the essentials. Here’s to a great start.
America, the nation that created the hamburger, isn’t actually the most ideal for teeth health. Perhaps, this has something to do with our diet and our tendency to grab junk food as attested by a fast food restaurant in just about every corner in the city.
Statistics show more than one in every four (26%) adult Americans suffers from untreated tooth decay. Worse, nearly half (46%) of adults 30 years old and older suffer from gum disease. If that were not enough, oral cancers are also pervasive in older adults, especially those who smoke and are into heavy drinking.
But before you press the panic button, know that there may be things that you could be doing right now that are not commendable for your child. For one, many believe the time to get on your toes regarding your child’s teeth is when they have their first tooth. But that’s not the way it should go.
The best way to ensure your child has the best teeth is to start once he’s born. Surprise, right? You should start the teeth care even when the first tooth has not appeared. That’s because even when the teeth are not yet out, they’re there already lined up in their jaw. And that means not minding oral health can affect your baby’s yet-to-be-visible teeth.
To do that, use a damp yet clean washcloth to take care of their gums. Run it so the bacteria can be kept at bay. Think of it as prepping the grounds for teeth to grow.
Let the Right Professional In
Of course, you will have to let the teeth experts do their job to check on your baby’s teeth. And don’t think for one minute that it would be OK if you don’t. The faster you can have a dentist check on your child, the better. Why? Teeth are like trees. Once they’ve fully grown to correct them may take a lot more effort with diminishing returns.
For instance, some orthodontic devices work best when the child is still younger, at about seven years old. Indeed, it’s more effective position correctors are set in place before the permanent teeth start to come through. By installing the orthodontic appliance at a tender age, the child’s ability to chew food improves. Plus, misaligned and protruding teeth get corrected with the least injury.
Take note that you must be aware of the progress of your child’s teeth. Though each child has their own calendar, usually by age three, the full set of 20 primary teeth is up. And by the age of seven or eight, these primary teeth, also dubbed as milk teeth, start to give way to permanent teeth. It’s best, therefore, that you ensure whatever necessary corrections are in place before that time.
A good time to drop by the dentist’s clinic is before the child is one year old. You need to do your due diligence in this regard. Check out patient reviews for pediatric dentists before you schedule an appointment. A good dentist can not only factor in a good treatment but also calms the fears of your child. The first meeting should be telling.
Start at Home
Oftentimes, your child will resist the idea of a dentist. Many adults unknowingly give the impression that dentists are tooth pullers elaborating stories on how they got rid of an aching tooth.
To counter their fears, you may have to do some role-playing from your precious abode. Before you ever set foot in a dentist’s clinic, play the dentist’s role at home. Set the role-play in fun. Moreover, you can have dentist-themed toys that your child can play with. When they’re grown accustomed to all that, getting them in the dentist’s chair should be as easy as a walk in the park.