Oral Health Tips for Babies and Toddlers: Caring for Tiny Teeth and Gums

At our Cary pediatric dental practice, we cannot overstate the importance of establishing healthy oral care habits for your babies and toddlers early on. Proper dental care during this pivotal period can lay a strong foundation for a lifetime of healthy smiles. 

In this guide, we will delve into the best practices for taking care of your little one’s tiny teeth and gums.

Establishing a Dental Home Early

According to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, your child should have their first dental check-up by their first birthday. Establishing a dental home early on provides a go-to place for all your child’s oral health needs. Dr. Brooks and Dr. Chandak are here to welcome you and guide you through this early phase of dental health.

Caring for Gummy Smiles

Before the Teeth Erupt

Before your baby’s teeth come in, it is essential to keep their gums healthy:

  • Wipe the Gums: Use a soft, damp cloth to gently wipe your baby’s gums after feedings and before bedtime.
  • Avoid Sugary Liquids: Keep your baby away from sugary liquids to prevent early tooth decay.

First Teeth

Once the first teeth appear, usually around 6 months, it’s time to start a gentle brushing routine:

  • Use a Baby Toothbrush: Use a small, soft-bristled toothbrush designed for infants.
  • Utilize Fluoride Toothpaste: A rice grain-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste is enough for babies.

Toddlers and Their Growing Set of Teeth

As your toddler grows, so will their dental needs. Here’s how you can take care of their developing teeth:

  • Brushing Twice a Day: Instill the habit of brushing twice a day, using a pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste.
  • Teach Them to Spit: Encourage your child to spit out the toothpaste after brushing.
  • Avoid Bedtime Bottles: Discourage bedtime bottles with juice or milk to prevent tooth decay.

Healthy Dietary Habits

We advocate for a balanced diet that promotes healthy teeth and gums:

  • Limit Sugary Snacks: Reduce the frequency of sugary snacks to prevent cavities.
  • Encourage Water Intake: Promote drinking water, especially if it contains fluoride, to keep the teeth healthy.

Regular Dental Check-ups

To ensure optimal oral health, it is crucial to have regular check-ups with your Cary pediatric dentist:

  • First Dental Visit: Schedule the first visit when the first tooth appears, or no later than the first birthday.
  • Regular Check-ups: Maintain a routine of regular dental check-ups to monitor the development of your child’s teeth and to catch any issues early on.

Visit Our Cary Pediatric Dental Office Today!

Preston Corners Pediatric Dentistry is committed to helping you nurture and maintain your child’s oral health from the get-go. The early years are a vital time to establish healthy habits that will set them up for a lifetime of beautiful smiles.

Remember, early dental visits can prevent dental problems later on. Don’t wait until a problem arises; be proactive about your child’s dental health. Contact us today to schedule your child’s first dental appointment and embark on a journey of healthy smiles and optimal oral health. Your child’s happiest and healthiest smile is just a phone call away.