Your Baby’s Oral Health

Baby and mother on bed

Lund Dental is dedicated to providing the best dental care for your whole family, including the youngest of patients, even before full dental development. It is important to care for your child’s teeth even before the teeth are fully-grown in. Taking the steps below to care for your child’s gum and teeth development will result in lifelong oral health.

When To Anticipate Your Baby’s First Tooth!

Our team at Lund Dental typically finds that the first tooth erupts at about 6 months after birth. The four front teeth are typically the first to come in with the rest to follow. Most often we find that children typically have all their teeth by age 3 however this is not true for all children and there is no need to be concerned if your child’s dental development is a little slower or faster. If you are concerned with the growth of you child’s teeth, do not hesitate to call our office and we will be happy to answer any questions.

Are Baby Teeth Less Important Than Adult Teeth?

Primary teeth, or baby teeth, are just as important as permanent adult teeth, which is why they are also just as important to care for. Healthy baby teeth allow your child to chew their food and speak. Additionally, primary teeth are keeping the spaces in the jaw clear in order for the permanent teeth to grow in. In the case that a tooth is lost too early, there is time for the teeth on either side to come in and take over that spot, causing the adult tooth to come in crooked, which could result in the need for braces. It is important to keep an eye on these teeth and to schedule regular dentist appointments for your child to make sure that there oral health development is going as expected.

When Should I Begin Brushing My Child’s Teeth?

You should begin brushing your children’s teeth beginning with the appearance of the first tooth. You can use a small child’s size toothbrush and child’s toothpaste that can be purchased at most grocery or drugstores or we can provide you with some at your next office appointment. The children toothpaste used is completely safe for your child to swallow but we do suggest only using a pea-sized amount in order to prevent any stomach irritation due to the fluoride in the toothpaste. It is also important to teach your child how to spit out any leftover toothpaste and how to rinse both their brush and mouth with water after they are finished brushing.

Is It Necessary To Help My Child Brush Their Teeth?

Once your child can hold the brush and move the toothbrush around their mouth it is okay to let them go ahead and do it themselves. However, it is really important to still supervise your child and assist them until they can properly and thoroughly brush their whole mouth. This will help stress the important of brushing their teeth and instill proper techniques. This should continue until your child is over the age of seven.

Should I Floss My Child’s Teeth?

Once your child’s teeth have grown in enough to have two teeth touching, an interdental cleaner can be used to clean between your child’s teeth. We have these interdental cleaners in the office and will be happy to provide you with one at your next visit. Flossing is an important part of any oral hygiene routine because it reaches areas of your mouth that brushing cannot.

What Is Baby Bottle Tooth Decay?

Baby bottle tooth decay occurs in infants or young children when their bottle is left in their mouth during nap times or when excess milk is left over in the mouth that allows for bacteria develop. This decay can be destructive to the teeth, most commonly the upper front teeth.

What Causes Baby Bottle Tooth Decay?

This type of tooth decay happens when sweetened liquids, including milk, formula, and juice, are left in the mouth for extended periods of time. When this happens bacteria is able to get into the mouth and use these sugars to break down foods, which results in the production of acid that can attack the teeth. Your child is at risk of this any time they are sucking on a bottle for longer than 20 minutes. It is important to be aware of what liquids you are giving your child as well as the amount of time they spend drinking in order to prevent excessive decay and future oral health problems. It is also important to be aware that allowing your child to sleep with a bottle filled with anything except for pure water during naps or at night increases their risk for dental harm.

Schedule An Appointment!

Thank you for choosing the family dental practice of Drs. William & Cara Lund! Our goal is to provide you and your whole family with outstanding, comprehensive dental care in a friendly and comfortable environment. If you ever have any questions or would like to schedule an appointment with us, please do not hesitate to call our Stoneham office. We look forward to hearing from you soon!

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