Welcoming a new child to your family can be exciting and overwhelming-- caring for another person comes with a lot of responsibilities. As a parent, you are sure to want to do everything possible to ensure that your child is as healthy as possible. When it comes to taking care of your baby, don't forget about the importance of good oral health. It is never too early to begin a good oral hygiene routine-- use the following tips to keep your child's mouth and gums healthy:
Clean Mouth After Feedings
There is no reason to wait until your baby gets his or her first tooth to begin taking care of his or her mouth. You can start cleaning your baby's mouth from birth, which can help remove bacteria from the gums. Doing so is easy-- just use a damp cloth or clean piece of gauze to gently wipe the gums after each feeding. In addition to removing bacteria, cleaning your baby's mouth from a young age may make it easier for your child to accept teeth brushing when he or she gets a little older.
Say No to Falling Asleep While Drinking Milk
Feeding and sucking are very comforting to infants, and it is not uncommon for a baby to fall asleep while nursing or drinking a bottle of formula. Some parents make the mistake of giving their child a bottle of formula or breast milk when they put them down at night to help them fall asleep. Many people do not realize that falling asleep while nursing or drinking a bottle can lead to extensive dental problems over time. If a baby falls asleep with milk in his or her mouth, the liquid can pool on the surface of the teeth; milk and formula have a high sugar content, which feeds the bacteria that causes tooth decay. A child who always goes to bed with a bottle of milk is prone to extreme tooth decay, which can lead to him or her needing a lot of invasive dental treatment at a young age.
Schedule Regular Dental Appointments
According to the Canadian Dental Association, young children should have their first dental check up by the time they turn one year old. After your child's first dental check up, it is important to schedule regular visits to ensure that his or her teeth and gums remain healthy and any problems can be treated promptly.
For more information about your child's oral health, contact a company like Dr. Timothy Gilchrist Family Dentistry.