How to take care of baby’s teeth and gums
Teething period of your baby is the important milestone in his/her growth. It paves way for beginning of solid food in your baby’s diet. It is advisable to take care of the teeth and gums of your baby right from the start so as to provide healthy teeth and gums.
It is better to give a healthy dental care for your baby so that he/she develops strong teeth and gums.
Health teeth and gums are vital to children’s general health. Good dental care should begin even before the arrival of the first baby teeth. Before proceeding with dental care; let us understand what is the teething period of your baby? What are the changes your baby undergoes during that period?
During teething period, the gums open up to show the teeth and teething in babies causes the following behavioral changes:
- Babies cry a lot and may seem cranky
- Do not feed as usual
- Bite objects like toys, bibs etc.
- Have more dirty nappies more often
The above signs may be caused by teething or they might just be normal part of development or result of minor infections or illness. It is a myth to consider the above issues as the reason of teething and keeping quiet, it is better to show to the doctor, if the problems persist.
When it comes to dental care for baby’s teeth and gums, it is advisable to start from the beginning itself; well before the first tooth appears.
Wipe the gums of the baby couple of times in a day using clean, cotton and soft cloth. As soon as the teeth arrive, clean them twice a day – once in morning and the second time before going to bed. Use clean, cotton cloth and move around the mouth of the baby with finger tips and wipe the front and back of each of your baby’s teeth.
If your baby is comfortable, you may start with extra soft, small toothbrush designed for children under two years. Use only water on the toothbrush until your baby is 18 months old.
Ask your dentist before introducing any tooth paste for your baby. The dentist will normally recommend pea sized amount of low fluoride toothpaste on toothbrush. Change the tooth brush of your baby after every month or when you find the bristles worn out or frayed, whichever is earlier.
Here are some of the best ways to clean the teeth of your baby:
- Place your baby in the position, where you can see his/her mouth and he/she feels comfortable and secure.
- Cup the chin of the baby in your hand with his/her head resting against your body.
- Clean the teeth using soft, circular motions.
the lips to brush the front and back of the teeth and at the gum line.
Keep the tooth brush clean:
- It is important to maintain the hygiene for good dental health. After cleaning the baby’s teeth and gums, rinse the toothbrush with tap water.
- Store the tooth brush in neat and hygiene place. Store it upright in an open container to allow it to air – dry.
- In case the tooth brushes of other family members are stored at the same place, see to it that the brushes do not touch each other. This will minimize the risk of decay causing germs will travel between brushes and into the mouth of your baby.
Things one should take into account to prevent tooth decay:
- Clean the teeth of the baby with soft and clean cloth after each feeding. You might use toothbrush after the recommended age.
- Avoid large amount of sugary foods, like chocolates, cakes etc
- While buying tooth paste for your baby, make sure that it contains fluoride but only in pea size amount.
Health teeth is important for the
overall health of your baby as it helps you baby eat and form sounds and words.
They also affect the way your baby’s jaws grow. Strong oral care help to set
good dental habits as your baby grows. Unhygienic and poor health care can lead
to infection, diseases and other teeth issues.