Learn the Stages of Your Child’s Smile and How to Take Care of Their Teeth and Gums
As National Children’s Dental Health Month ends, we always want to share helpful tips and tricks for parents (and parents-to-be) as they watch their children grow. A child’s smile, while shiny and brand new, it’s extremely sensitive and vulnerable, so it’s important that their teeth (both baby and permanent) are being taken care of as they get older. Break down how your children’s smiles grow with the help of your San Diego orthodontist.
Your child’s baby teeth, a full set of 20 primary teeth, start appearing between six months and a year. The reason you see so many wide smiles with only one or two teeth on display is because their front teeth, on both the top and bottom, are usually the ones to come in first.
During this time, your children may also be feeling discomfort due to their teeth coming in. This time can cause tender, sore gums, causing them to feel irritated and fussy. Try gently rubbing your child’s gums with a clean finger or a wet gauze to reduce the discomfort. There are also teething products available for children, like rubbing rings, for them to chew on.
While these teeth aren’t permanent, they’re still extremely important to your child’s overall health and development. With these teeth, your child learns how to properly chew and speak, all while their body grows and makes room in their jaw for their permanent teeth that will come in next.
How to Take Care of Your Child’s Smile as They Grow
As your child grows older, the ways you take care of them will change over time. In the beginning, gently wipe down their gums with a clean, damp gauze or a soft washcloth. It’s important to keep this area as clean and healthy as possible for when their teeth begin to appear. Once they do, they’re at risk for decay, so be sure to be diligent in cleaning their teeth and gums properly.
As soon as teeth appear, start to brush them! Don’t hesitate to ask us the best kind of toothbrush to use for your child during these stages of their life. You’ll want a soft-bristled brush and toothpaste that helps clean and strengthen their smile. Use a very small amount of toothpaste since it can be extremely abrasive and can cause more harm than good if there’s too much. Be sure to brush their teeth twice a day, every morning and night, and help them learn how to brush and floss as they get older.
If you’re looking for more ways to protect your child’s smile, ranging from their diet to athletic involvement, don’t hesitate to call your San Diego orthodontist at (858) 481-1771 and we’ll be happy to help your family’s healthy development in the best way possible!