Keeping Baby’s Smile Healthy

Your baby’s smile is precious. Sometime between four and seven months of age, you’ll begin seeing teeth erupt. It’s essential to take good care of your baby’s smile because, even though the baby teeth are temporary, infant dental decay is a serious problem. Dentists recommend scheduling the first dental exam within six months of the appearance of the first tooth, and by the baby’s first birthday. But if you notice any problems, you should bring your child in to see the dentist right away.  

Caring for Your Baby’s Gums 

You can promote oral health from the first day of your baby’s life. Moisten a soft, clean washcloth or a pad of sterile gauze, and wipe your baby’s gums gently at least twice daily. You should also wipe your baby’s gums after each feeding and before putting your baby down to sleep. 

Preventing Baby Bottle Decay 

Baby bottle decay is a term used for tooth decay in infants. Tooth decay in children this young is often caused by the common practice of putting babies to bed with a bottle. Avoiding this habit is one effective way to protect your child’s oral health. You should also avoid giving your baby fruit juice, which is high in sugar. Additionally, clean your baby’s pacifier with water, instead of cleaning it with your own mouth. Swapping saliva with your baby will transfer germs from your mouth to your baby’s. 

Brushing Your Baby’s Teeth 

As soon as your baby’s first tooth erupts, you can begin brushing it gently. Use an infant-sized toothbrush. Add just a tiny smear of fluoride toothpaste—no bigger than a grain of rice—and gently brush the teeth using circular strokes. Once your child turns three, you can use a pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste. You can also begin teaching your child to brush his or her own teeth, but kids still need to be supervised until they are at least six or seven. 

We care for patients of all ages here at Glenwood Premier Dental. If you have any questions about your baby’s oral health, one of our dentists in Hazlet will be happy to assist you. Give us a call today at (732) 264-4477.

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