Frequently asked questions about oral health for children

What should I use to clean my baby’s teeth?

A soft-bristled toothbrush – preferably with a small head – will remove plaque bacteria that can lead to decay. If your child’s teeth had not yet erupted, it is recommended that you use a clean cloth to wipe their gums regularly. This ensures that they would develop healthy teeth.

When should I take my child to the dentist for the first check-up?

In order to prevent dental problems, your child should see a paediatric dentist when the first tooth erupts. Typically, this is no later than his or her first birthday.

Are primary teeth really that important to my child?

Primary teeth are important for many reasons. Not only do they help children speak clearly and chew naturally, but they also aid in the formation of a path that permanent teeth can follow when they are ready to erupt.

Are thumb sucking and pacifier habits harmful for a child’s teeth?

Thumb and pacifier sucking habits will generally only become a problem if they go on for a very long period of time. Most children stop these habits on their own, but if they are still sucking their thumbs or fingers past the age of three, your paediatric dentist may recommend a mouth appliance that restricts them from sucking their thumbs or a pacifier.

How can I prevent decay caused by nursing?

Avoid nursing children to sleep or putting anything other than water in their bed-time bottle

How often does my child need to see the paediatric dentist?

A check-up every six months is recommended in order prevent cavities and other dental problems.

When should my child start using fluoride toothpaste and how much should be used?

As soon as the teeth begin erupting, start brushing twice daily using fluoridated toothpaste and a soft, age-appropriate sized toothbrush. Use a “smear” amount of toothpaste to brush the teeth of a child younger than two years of age. For the 2-5-year-old, use a “pea-size” amount of toothpaste and perform or assist your child’s tooth brushing. Remember that children should spit out the excess toothpaste after brushing.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding the state of your child’s oral health, contact a paediatric dentist in Claremont today.