Research indicates the importance of starting children early in their lives with good dental hygiene and oral care. The most common chronic childhood disease in the U.S. is tooth decay. Early treatment prevents problems affecting a child’s health, wellbeing, self-image and overall achievement.
The National Institute of Dental & Craniofacial Research estimates that children will miss 52 million hours of school each year due to oral health problems.
By introducing proper oral care early in a child’s life, as early as infancy, parents can ensure that their children practice good dental hygiene. According to The American Dental Hygiene Association, this includes:
- Thoroughly cleaning an infant’s gums after each feeding with an infant’s cloth, to stimulate gym tissue and remove food.
- Gently brushing your baby’s erupted teeth with a baby toothbrush and a pea-sized amount of fluoridated toothpaste.
- Teaching your child from age 2 about proper brushing and later teaching them about gentle flossing.
- Regular dental visits, with a child friendly dentist, to check for cavities in primary teeth and for possible developmental problems; Discussing fluoride supplements id township water isn’t fluoridated; Discussing sealants to protect your child’s teeth.