Is the tooth fairy visiting your toddler already? Are you planning to teach him how to maintain his pearlies well? If you said yes to the above questions, read on to know when it is time to start teaching the basics of oral hygiene for toddlers and how to go about it.
Most dentists suggest that you should start making regular trips to the dental clinic when your toddler turns two. Teaching the basics of oral hygiene and proper toddler dental care should begin at home, but visiting a dentist will ensure you know that everything is alright.
Here are a few things you should keep in mind that will help you take care of dental hygiene for toddlers:
1. Tackle The Teething Problems:
Most babies get their first tooth while they are five or six months old. They continue to have more pearlies propping up until their third birthday.
- When new teeth erupt, your toddler’s gums turn tender. It can make your toddler irritable and uncomfortable.
- To reduce his discomfort, start massaging your toddler’s gums gently from the time the first tooth appears. You can use a clean and damp cloth or your finger to ease any teething pain.
- You can also hand your toddler a frozen teething ring to soothe his sore gums.
- If your toddler suffers from a fever, diarrhea or cough, and cold while teething or you notice other symptoms of distress, make sure you speak to his pediatrician.
[ Read: Symptoms Of Teething In Toddlers ]
2. Teach Your Toddler To Brush Right:
You should teach your toddler the basics of brushing around his first birthday. Until your toddler turns five to six years old, he may need your help to brush properly every day.
- Get a baby toothbrush for him. It should have soft bristles and a small head that will easily fit in your toddler’s hand. You should also check the handle to see if your toddler can grip it easily.
- Once your toddler learns how to hold the brush and understands the basic concept of brushing, help him start using toothpaste that has fluoride in it. You can put a pea-sized amount of toothpaste on your toddler’s brush but tell him to avoid swallowing it, even though it will not be harmful.
- Gently help him brush the insides of his teeth one by one. Teach your toddler to get rid of the plaque deposits by moving the brush back and forth in a steady motion. Make sure he does not put too much pressure and erode the teeth enamel but brushes with a light hand.
[ Read: Tooth Discoloration In Toddlers ]
3. Inculcate Good Hygiene Habits:
Start teaching all about oral care and dental care for toddlers right from the start, as it will form the basis of good personal hygiene later too.
- Once your toddler starts getting multiple teeth, you can also use floss to clean between his teeth. You can speak to your toddler’s dentist about it to know the best way and method to do it.
- Your toddler should brush twice a day, once in the morning after waking up and once before going to bed at night. Once your toddler brushes his teeth at night, tell him to avoid eating or drinking anything.
- Do not allow your toddler to go to bed while drinking milk or having a bottle in his mouth, as it can lead to dental cavities.
- Discourage your toddler from eating sweets, candies and fizzy drinks that can further cause decay in his teeth.
[ Read: Hygiene Habits For Toddlers ]
Your toddler will follow your example, so make sure you also practice good dental care. Help your toddler to brush well each day until he develops a habit to maintain good dental hygiene.
Hope you liked our post on toddler dental care. When did your toddler start brushing and how did you teach him about oral hygiene? Do share your advice and tips on toddler tooth care with other moms here.
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