Your child’s well-being is your biggest concern and their oral hygiene is an important part of their overall health. The care of your child’s teeth and gums begins with you - - you can set them on the right path for a lifetime of excellent oral hygiene.
Oral Hygiene for Infants
Babies are born with all their teeth - you can't see them because they are hidden in the gums. Baby teeth start to break through the gums around 6 months but it is important to start good oral care for infants even before the first tooth comes in. From healthy gums come healthy teeth.
Wipe your baby’s gums with a soft washcloth after feeding. This helps remove the bacteria that can cause tooth decay.
Once they begin to erupt, brush teeth twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste in an amount no more than a smear the size of a grain of rice – use a soft-bristle toothbrush.
Take the bottle away after your child finishes drinking to prevent baby bottle tooth decay. Baby bottle tooth decay can happen when babies drink milk, formula, or juice from bottles over long periods of time or fall asleep with the bottle.
Schedule your child’s first dental appointment before their first birthday or after his or her first baby tooth is visible, whichever comes first. This visit is like a well-baby visit with your pediatrician.
Oral Hygiene for Children
As kids grow up, their oral hygiene habits should grow with them.
Kids have all their baby teeth by the age of 3. These are called primaryteeth. Baby teeth start falling out around age 6; that's when the permanent, or adult, teeth start coming in. Gaps between baby teeth are normal. They make room for the permanent teeth. Most permanent teeth come in by age 13.
Establishing the Best Oral Hygiene Routine for Children
Here are some tips to help keep your child’s teeth healthy and strong starting at age 3:
Use a pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste and make sure your child spits it out after brushing
Be sure your child brushes for at least 2 minutes twice a day
Start flossing as soon as teeth touch, or even earlier to help build good habits.
Help your child brush and floss, and remind him or her to pay attention to the back teeth.
Visit the dentist every 6 months.
Oral Hygiene for Preteens
As children grow older and more of their permanent teeth come in, a rigorous daily dental hygiene routine is crucial to keeping teeth and gums healthy. However, it can be difficult to keep preteens interested in their oral care.
Try these tips to keep your child on track:
As preteens become more conscious of their appearance, it can be helpful to remind them that good oral care can help them look and feel better.
Remind your child to brush twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste for a full two minutes which not only fights cavities and strengthens teeth, but also gives older kids the confidence of having fresh breath. A power toothbrush might make brushing more fun for preteens.
Flossing is extremely important at this point as most permanent teeth have erupted and cleaning between them will help prevent cavities and keep their mouth fresh.
Encourage children who play sports to wear a mouth guard to protect their teeth from injuries.
Make sure kids who wear braces use a power brush and floss very thoroughly to avoid white spots on teeth when braces come off.
Use these products to help children of all ages prevent cavities and maintain great oral health:
[ To be Added: Courtesy Crest]
Wisdom Teeth Removal
Wisdom teeth, or third molars, are the final teeth to develop in the mouth, usually in our late teens or early twenties. The 4 wisdom teeth are the last teeth in the back of your mouth – top and bottom. Not everyone has wisdom teeth and if they do not crowd other teeth, they can stay and act like other molars for chewing food.
Wisdom Teeth Pain and Infection
Often times, wisdom teeth become trapped in the jawbone and don't break through the gum tissue. Sometimes wisdom teeth are crooked and cause cavities or gum disease. If wisdom teeth are crooked, blocked by other teeth or have a flap of gum tissue on top, plaque and food can enter around the tooth and cause cavities, gum disease or wisdom tooth infection.
X-rays are taken to see if you have wisdom teeth and how they are placed in your jawbone.
Do Wisdom Teeth have to be removed?
In many cases, it is a good idea that trapped wisdom teeth be extracted. Depending on the location of the tooth, taking out the wisdom tooth can be done in your dentist's office or in an oral surgeon’s office.
Angular, bony impaction of third molar (wisdom tooth)
Soft tissue impaction of third molar.
An incision is made and overlying soft tissue and bone are removed, exposing the crown of the impacted tooth.
The tooth is extracted whole or surgically cut into large pieces, which can be removed separately if the entire tooth cannot be removed at once. The site is closed with stitches.
Tips for a Speedy Recovery:
Use ice packs on the cheek for swelling, putting the pack on for 30 minutes and leaving it off for 30 minutes
Bite on clean gauze to stop bleeding
Eat soft foods and drink extra liquids
Don't chew hard or crunchy foods in tender areas
Brush carefully the day after surgery
Follow the instructions for taking any medications your dentist recommends
Don't use drinking straws as the suction can dislodge the blood clot in the tooth socket
Don’t drink hot liquids
Your dentist may tell you to use a mouthwash
Call your dentist or doctor right away if you have excess bleeding, swelling, severe pain, or fever. It will take several weeks to months for the mouth to heal completely after the wisdom teeth have been removed
Be sure to follow the special home care instructions provided by your dental professional.
Try these products to maintain good oral health while recovering: