Dental hygiene at an early age
The awareness of maintaining good oral hygiene children acquire from infancy. Many parents are troubled with the question of when to start with oral hygiene in children.
The milk teeth start sprouting at around six months and the growth is completed by the third year. There are altogether twenty of them and they all fall out and are replaced by permanent teeth. The deciduous incisors are first to erupt at the age of 6 to 9 months, first the lower and then the upper as well as all the other milk teeth. They are followed by the deciduous molars at 12 to 15 months, then the canines at 18 to 20 months and the second molars which as the last deciduous teeth sprout at 24 to 36 months. The teeth replacement begins around the age of six years when the milk incisors fall out and the permanent incisors start to grow and after all the milk teeth, the first permanent molars as well. The stage of teeth replacement finishes around the age of twelve.
As soon as they erupt, teeth can be brushed with a small soft toothbrush adapted to that age or wipe up with gauze. In addition, it is good to rinse the mouth with water after eating and thus remove the food remains. The use of toothpaste is not recommended until the age of two and after that, it is necessary to use the toothpaste intended for the child´s age. For children up to the age of three, the sufficient amount is not bigger than a rice grain and from the age of three to six, not bigger than a pea.
It is a recommended to visit a dentist within six months of the first teeth eruption in order to assess whether it is all right with the eruption of the teeth and the jaw development and instruct parents in maintaining oral hygiene. Like all other activities, a child also learns how to brush its teeth by imitating his parents. Parents should set an example to their child and demonstrate the tooth brushing method. The child should be allowed to make independent attempts to brush its teeth because in this way it develops its motor skills, but in the end, it is necessary to control it and to once again thoroughly brush all surfaces. Parents should brush their child´s teeth until the age of six or seven.
Besides oral hygiene, nutrition is also important, so, it is necessary to avoid sweets, lollipops, snacks, and crisps because they stick to the teeth and therefore remain in the mouth for a long time. If the desire for sweet comes up, it is better to give the child some chocolate it will quickly dissolve in the mouth and rinse with saliva. Sodas and juices are also very harmful so it is best to drink water for thirst. When a child is small, it is not a good idea to put it to sleep with a bottle of milk or sweetened tea because this increases the risk of the so-called " bottle caries”.
The health of deciduous teeth is very important because they keep the place for permanent teeth thus preventing their premature loss that can lead to orthodontic anomalies and the child is spared the pain and unpleasant experiences at the dentist.
It is important that the child experiences the first visit to the dentists as a game which means it is brought to the dental office when nothing hurts. If a parent has unpleasant experiences at a dentist, it is important that he does not pass that fear to the child. During the first visit, the child will become familiar with the office ambiance, its teeth will be examined, the hygiene checked and will be given instructions on brushing.
The teeth of our children are precious. If we take proper care of them together, there are no tears and no pain and our little patients become the best patients.