According to studies performed by paediatric dentists, tooth decay problems are the most common chronic disease to affect children. Even very young infants should receive proper dental care to help prevent developing these long term problems. This care should begin even before the first tooth breaks through.
Plaque can begin to build up before an infant develops any teeth. Many paediatric dentists will recommend that parents use a damp washcloth to clean their infant’s gums after feedings to help prevent the build-up of plaque. It is recommended to take all necessary steps to prevent baby bottle mouth as well, which is a condition that can result from giving a baby a bottle to fall asleep with. The milk or juice that is given to the baby just before they fall asleep allows bacteria to grow in their mouth during the night. This can lead to swift and severe decay of the baby teeth, which can have negative long term effects for the baby. Most experts think that baby bottle mouth occurs in as much as 15 percent of children.
Most babies begin to get their first teeth around the age of four months. This is the appropriate time to begin brushing the infant’s teeth. This is also a good time for the infant to begin regular trips to the dental practice. Tooth decay and cavities can begin to form as soon as the teeth break through the baby’s gums, so proper daily brushing and regular visits to the dentist are important. An infant’s teeth should be brushed at least twice a day for at least two minutes. It is important to use a toothpaste that is specifically designed for infants that prevent the baby from swallowing any of it. Special toothbrushes with extra soft bristles should also be used.
Proper dental hygiene habits start at a young age. By taking steps towards preventive care from an early age, orthodontic treatment in later years can be avoided. Parents who want to know more about oral health for children and braces in Gravesend can consult with Dr Rik Trivedi and the qualified dental staff at Parrock Dental and Implant Centre. These dental professionals can answer questions regarding infant and child dental care.
The Centre is located at 189-191 Parrock Street, in Gravesend, Kent DA12 1EN. More information can be found by calling 01474 537191 or by visiting www.parrockdental.co.uk