The average child gets their first tooth between the ages of 6 months and 12 months. Dental care should begin immediately and not be neglected. This blog post from a Nicholasville pediatric dentist will go over a few things you should instill in your child from a young age when it comes to oral care.

Teeth are essential, even if we sometimes treat them as if they aren’t as vital to our health as the rest of our bodies. As a parent, you should be instilling the necessity of good oral care from the very beginning of your child’s life.

Read on for more information.

1. They Should Brush Their Teeth Twice Per Day

It would be best if you started this habit with your children as soon as they develop their first tooth. Both children and adults should brush their teeth for two minutes two times a day with a soft-bristled brush.

In order to ensure they brush their teeth for the full two minutes, adopt a dental hygiene song or include a timer in the process. This can be fun as well as help you measure how long they should be brushing.

As a parent, this is something you’ll have to start with your children, and you’ll be responsible for brushing their teeth until they can do it themselves.

It may be difficult at first, but your child will start to embrace the habit after a while. Make the brushing experience fun with different types of toothbrushes or kinds of toothpaste–as long as the toothpaste has fluoride in it. You can even brush your teeth with your child or have siblings do it together, especially if the younger sibling looks up to an older sibling.

2. They Should See the Dentist Twice Per Year

Many people are afraid of the dentist, including adults. Some adults may even have dental anxiety due to a traumatic experience at the dentist in the past.

However, visiting the dentist is a vital part of oral health. The dentist will be able to tell if your child’s teeth are in good shape or if they need a sealant or cavity filled. Seeing a dentist at least twice a year is a great way to prevent your child from developing issues with their teeth and stop things like gum disease by catching it early.

Make an appointment with a dentist specializing in working with children, as they know tips and tricks to keep a child feeling comfortable. They can also help children keep still and motivate them with rewards.

To help do away with your child’s dental anxiety, take them along with you to a dental visit. Don’t take them to see you get major dental surgery like a root canal, but take them to see you get your teeth cleaned and have an X-ray. Watching mom or dad do it and have no trouble can help make them less afraid.

Your child should visit the dentist as soon as they have their first tooth. Establishing a relationship with a dentist can also make children feel less afraid.

You may also wish to accompany a visit to the dentist with something positive to help motivate your children even more. Take them out afterward for a healthy meal, take them to the park or take them shopping. That way, they’ll associate a dental visit with something to look forward to as well.

3. Floss At Least Once Per Day

Flossing is something many adults overlook, but it is an important aspect of dental care. Both adults and children should floss at least once per day, and this should be introduced to your child at an early age as part of their dental routine.

Make flossing part of your nighttime routine so that children get in the habit of doing it. As with brushing, you may wish to do it with older children or yourself or your partner to model the behavior.

4. Replace Brushes When Bristles Start to Fray

You should replace your toothbrush once every three to four months, and it’s no different for children. You should replace the brush sooner if the bristles start to fray. Get your child in the habit of buying a new toothbrush when appropriate, so they’ll understand what to look for and when to replace the toothbrush on their own.

When children are very little, the way their toothbrush looks shouldn’t matter as much. But as your child gets older, it can be fun to incorporate a special toothbrush into the mix. If your child has a favorite film or character, you may wish to purchase a toothbrush with this character on it. This can add to the excitement of the daily routine.

Some toothbrushes have bells and whistles, like being able to sing or making funny noises. This can help your child look forward to their daily dental routine instead of dreading it.

Make Your Appointment with a Nicholasville Pediatric Dentist Today

Get your child into the habit of healthy oral care early and make an appointment with us, a Nicholasville pediatric dentist, today. We can ensure you and your child are at ease throughout the appointment and ensure your child’s teeth are healthy, and help them understand what they may need to work on in terms of their oral health.

If you’re worried about your child’s first dental visit, click here for tips on how to prepare them.

Contact us today to make your appointment.