Industry Insider: Look Mom, No Cavities!
Isn’t that what every parent wants to hear at their child’s dentist appointment?
A cavity-free mouth is a great accomplishment for both the child and the parent(s). But how do you achieve it?
As a Board Certified Pediatric Dentist, I recommend parents and children establish habits early on that will lay the foundation for a path to a cavity free and healthy pediatric mouth.
Make healthy food and drink choices for your child.
Frequent meals and snacking increase the acidity of your child’s mouth, which increases the likelihood of developing cavities. Make water your child’s most frequent and popular beverage. Drinks like juices – even watered down juice – soda, Gatorade and chocolate milk can wreak havoc on your child’s teeth, so be sure to limit these sweet treats for special occasions only.
Brush and floss your child’s teeth until they are 8-9 years old.
The dexterity and patience required to do an acceptable job of cleaning your child’s teeth is similar to that of writing cursive. Make brushing and flossing part of a daily routine to set up a healthy lifestyle from the very beginning. Start brushing as soon as the first tooth erupts, which is usually around 6 months of age.
Take your child for their first dental cleaning and check-up at age 1.
The professional staff at your area pediatric dental office will give individualized oral hygiene instructions, as well as dietary recommendations to promote a cavity free household for your family. Taking your child to the dentist when they are one will not only get them acquainted and comfortable with the experience at a much younger age, but it will also allow the dental team to focus on cavity prevention, rather than cavity treatment. It is never too soon – or too late – to get started on a cavity free path for a happy, healthy smile!