Take good care of your child’s baby teeth. They do eventually fall out but until they do, baby teeth play an important role in helping your child bite and chew food, and speak clearly. Baby teeth also save space for the permanent teeth, and help guide them into place.
Even before your child gets his or her first tooth, you should wipe your child’s gums with an infant gum massager, clean damp gauze or a washcloth. Once your child’s teeth come in, brush them twice a day using a soft-bristled toothbrush with water.
Underneath your child’s baby teeth, the roots and position of the adult teeth are growing into place.Research shows that children who develop cavities in their baby teeth are more likely to develop cavities as an adult, so be sure to get your child to a dentist for a checkup. It is important to keep your child’s baby teeth clean, but once the permanent teeth start to come in you really need to make cleaning them a priority. These teeth will last your child a lifetime.
Of course, even though they’re kids, their teeth are still susceptible to the same conditions and damage that adult teeth face. If your child is at high risk for cavities, it’s time to cut down on the starchy snacks, such as crackers and chips, and limit sugary beverages. Remember that giving your child a bottle of sweetened liquid many times a day, or allowing your child to fall asleep with a bottle during naps, or at night, can be harmful to the child’s teeth.Many of the same treatment and evaluation options that adults have are also available to kids. These include x-rays, dental sealants, orthodontic treatment and more.