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Crystal Lake, IL 60014

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Posts for tag: Cavities in Kids

November 01, 2017
Category: Children
Tags: Cavities in Kids  

Baby teeth are important. They help your child chew, speak, and smile. They also help permanent teeth grow in the correct position. Did you know that children can get cavities as soon as their teeth first appear? Nearly one in four children ages 2–5 has cavities in their baby teeth and cavities can hurt! They can cause children to have problems eating, speaking, learning, playing, and sleeping. Read below to find out how you can help prevent cavities and promote healthy habits. Children learn healthy habits from their parents and caregivers.

TO HELP PREVENT CAVITIES:

 

DURING PREGNANCY 

Children’s teeth begin to develop between the third and sixth months of pregnancy. To help baby teeth develop correctly, be sure to get plenty of nutrients and eat a balanced diet. For tips on how to eat a balanced diet, visit choosemyplate.gov.  It is important to go to the dentist during pregnancy. Also, remember to brush teeth twice a day for two minutes, clean between teeth, and drink water with fluoride to help keep your own teeth and gums healthy and strong.

BIRTH to 1ST TOOTH (Birth to around 6 months)

Gently wipe baby’s gums with a clean, damp, soft washcloth or gauze after each feeding.  To help prevent tooth decay, fill your baby’s bottle only with formula, milk, or water. Finish bottle feedings before putting baby to bed. Rinse your baby’s pacifier with water to clean it. Don’t put it in your mouth and don’t share feeding spoons. You can pass cavity-causing germs to your child.  Don’t dip pacifiers in sugar, honey, or other foods.

1ST TOOTH to 3 YEARS OLD

Take your child to the dentist for a first checkup after the first tooth appears or by the time your child turns 1.  Brush your child’s teeth twice a day (morning and night). Use a baby toothbrush and a smear of fluoride toothpaste the size of a grain of rice. Start cleaning between teeth daily as soon as your child has two teeth that touch.  Protect your child’s teeth with fluoride. Talk to your physician or dentist about your child’s fluoride needs.  Sippy cups should only be used until around your child’s first birthday. Do not let your child sip all day on drinks with sugar.

3 to 5 YEARS OLD  

Brush your child’s teeth for two minutes twice a day. Use a pea-size amount of fluoride toothpaste and a small, soft toothbrush. Take turns—brush your child’s teeth one time and then have them do it the next time. Supervise brushing until your child can spit out the toothpaste instead of swallowing it, around age 6.  Clean between their teeth daily—for example, with dental floss.  Encourage your child to eat fruits, vegetables, and foods that are low in sugar, and to drink fluoridated water. Limit the amount of and how often your child drinks juice. Skip soda and sticky foods.  Ask your child’s dentist about dental sealants to protect teeth from decay.