A Pediatric Dentist Advises Good Oral Habits for Kids at Various Ages

Teaching children proper oral hygiene should start as early as possible, as this will be the building blocks of lifelong good dental habits that allow them to maintain a nice, straight smile. More importantly, this helps them avoid costly, painful, and unhealthy dental issues later on. However, children’s oral care needs are different at various age levels.

0-2 Years Old

You need to start caring for your child’s teeth even before they come out. Healthy gums are the foundation of healthy teeth. Make sure to gently wipe your baby’s gums after each feeding. Use a washcloth to get rid of the sticky coating left by milk or infant formula, as this can cause plaque to form. When their first teeth come out, brush twice a day using a soft-bristle toothbrush and water.

good oral habits

3-5 Years Old

At this age, you may now start using toothpaste during brushing. A pea-sized amount of paste will do, and be sure to teach your kid how to spit this out after they’re done brushing. In addition, habits like sucking pacifiers and thumbs should be broken by age four.

6-9 Years Old

Are your child’s teeth starting to touch? This is the perfect time to teach them how to floss. You may also talk to dentists in Greenville, SC to find out proper flossing techniques. At this point, their baby teeth may also start falling out to make room for their permanent teeth, so prepare them adequately for this event. Join them when flossing and brushing twice a day until they are able to do it by themselves.

10-12 Years Old

By 10 years old, they should be able to brush and floss alone. If your child plays sports, require them to wear a mouthguard to protect their teeth.

13 Years Old and Above

During their teenage years, your child begins to take a keener interest in their appearance. Make the most of this by reminding them frequently how having fresh breath and a beautiful smile will make them feel and look their best. You may also want to look into cosmetic dental procedures such as braces if their oral situation requires it.

Lastly, regular visits to a pediatric dentist in Greenville, SC is essential to maintaining your child’s dental health. The ADA recommends that you take your child to a dentist by the time of their first birthday, then every six months or more thereafter. Combine this with good dental habits from an early age, and your child can enjoy their straight, white smile for many years to come.

Keeping Your Child’s Teeth Healthy, kidshealth.org
8 Ways to Protect Your Child’s Teeth, webmd.com

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