The Importance of Looking After Your Children’s Dental Health
Parents play a pivotal role in ensuring that their children have a good oral hygiene, especially during the early years. Unfortunately, many people think that looking after their baby’s milk teeth is not important, since they will be replaced with the permanent teeth in a few years. The reality is that the milk teeth should be looked after in the same way as the permanent teeth, as there is a direct relationship between a child’s dental health and overall physical wellbeing. The Canadian Dental Association states that parents should take their children for their first visit to the dentist within 6 months of the eruption of their first tooth.
Why Are Primary Teeth Important?
Primary teeth in children appear around 6 months, and are typically fully erupted between the age of 2-3. The milk teeth perform the following vital functions:
- Chewing – although the milk teeth are not as strong as their permanent successors, they still play an important role in breaking the food into small particles, and make it easily digestible. In addition, it is with teeth that the child learns how to chew and swallow.
- Pronunciation of Words – it is with this first set of teeth that the child learns to correctly pronounce words and learn languages.
- Space Maintainers – the primary teeth serve as space maintainers, till the permanent ones erupt, and ensure proper alignment and positioning of the permanent teeth. It is commonly observed that the permanent teeth tend to erupt out of their normal position or at irregular angulations if the primary teeth and prematurely lost.
- Foundation for the Permanent Dentition – children learn the importance of looking after their oral health within the first years of life, and this training goes a long way in determining how they maintain oral hygiene with permanent dentition.
The Parents’ Role
Dr. Rimma Portman stresses to parents the importance of teaching their children to brush their teeth regularly and eat and balanced and healthy diet. Parents can instill good oral hygiene habits, which become instinctual as they grow and mature, and ensure good physical and dental health throughout their life.
- Supervise Them While They Brush Teeth – At first, parents should supervise the brushing of their children, not only ensuring that they brush all of their teeth properly, but also that they do not swallow the toothpaste, and rather spit it out.
- Healthy, Balanced Diet – Parents should add nutrients and minerals that are essential for the development of the teeth and bones, such as calcium, phosphorus, fluoride and vitamin D, most of which are available in our regular diet such as milk, egg and fish, while sunlight provides an abundant source of Vitamin D. Additionally, the frequency of intake of sugary drinks, candies and baked goods during the day should be reduced, and children should rinse their mouth immediately after taking these kinds of foods.
- Regular Dental Visits – This is one of the most essential things parents should do to ensure that their children have perfect and healthy teeth. By regularly taking their children to a dentist, any developing teeth problems in children, such as cavities or gum problems can be detected at an earlier stage, and managed before they can cause any issues.
Let Us Help – Visit Our Williamsburg, Brooklyn, New York Office Today
We are one of the top dentists in Brooklyn, New York and we would be happy to meet you and your family at our office, located directly in the heart of Williamsburg! Let us take care of you and your child’s teeth. Staying on top of your preventative dental services such as regular dental cleanings and check-ups ensure that you and your child don’t ever have to bear the agony of toothache as a result of tooth cavities and infections. We keep your teeth and smile beautiful and healthy.