Saturday, August 20, 2016

Dental Health Care for Children: How to Promote Good Habits at Young Age (Part One)

Dental Health Care for Children: How to Promote Good Habits at Young Age (Part One)

All dentist work with parents to figure out proper strategy based on the age and development of their children. For instance, while the dentist-recommended brushing time is 2 minutes, twice in a day using fluoride toothpaste, children are supposed to work up to that. While they surely want what is best for their children, most parents are surely not the experts in dentistry. Since brushing their own teeth is quite a different routine from brushing their children’s, it is up to the dental professionals to teach the right technique and timeline in brushing children’s teeth. Parents should begin cleaning prior to or as soon as they notice the first baby or milk teeth, usually at the age of 12 months. Toothbrushing may be too harsh at this particular age, so I recommend start with a wet gauze first for a softer clean. Young children can start to use just a small amount of toothpaste just before the age of 3 and as soon as their tooth erupt in the mouth.

A portrait of a dental assistant smiling at the camera with the dentist working in the background

I follow the evidence-based regulation of universal recommendations by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), American Dental Association (ADA), and American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) for the proper use of fluoride toothpaste as soon as the first baby tooth comes in. make sure that you use a smear amount of fluoridated toothpaste before the age 3 and a pea-sized amount after the age of 3.

For the majority my patients are under the age of 5, the parents are in charge of daily brushing. In fact, parents should be responsible for brushing their children’s teeth until their children reach the age of 8. My dental team shares a brilliant and useful piece of advice with the parents that are doubtful whether their children are ready to brush their teeth on their own. The ability to brush teeth is the part of developed motoric skills. Whether your little ones are able to tie their shoes, they are supposed to brush their teeth properly.

Dental Health Care as A Bonding Experience

Demonstrating proper brushing routine to children is indeed important in laying the foundation of good dental habits. In this case, parents can give the model of tooth brushing as they do the actual brushing. In addition to asking parents to pay attention to my demonstration of proper mouth cleaning technique, I also ask them to take over and then show me what they have learnt. This is a useful learning experiencefor both children and parents which allow me to make sure that they have understood the advice my team gives them.

proper mouth cleaning technique

Further, it will keep everyone engaged and remain focused during the first visit. One particular challenge is that while young kids are not so excited about the idea of brushing the teeth on daily basis, parents are rather stressed with trying to assure their children to learn proper technique of brushing or even simply will just sit while they brush for their kids. I demonstrate different options and positions for brushingtheir children’s teeth which will be useful for them individually. One of the biggest challenges in enhancing good oral and dental health is getting both children and parents excited about something that they see as such a dull routine.




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