Don’t forget the little people.
We believe that the key to a healthy smile starts a young age. So we at WM Dental make sure that all our kids leave with a smile. Whether its by giving rewards for a job well done. or even some gentle encouragement to set good habits. We want to set them up so their smile lasts a life time, and their first visits to the dentist are positive ones.
We are happy to offer free dental treatment for high school students from year 9 until their 18th birthday through the School Dental Service. We are also happy to see children privately too.
Tips from Domonique, a Mum and Dentist
Many parents are surprised to know that tooth decay can start from age 1. Dental decay in young children can cause toothache, pain and infection. Losing a tooth too soon can result in speech disorders, crooked permanent teeth and poor self-esteem. As a dentist I have seen first hand how badly children suffer from tooth decay. No amount of hugs, love or paracetamol can soothe a child with tooth ache. Prevention is definitely better than the cure.
As a mum of 3 young boys, I know good dental health starts early. The first place children learn about oral health is at home. Parents, you are the greatest teachers of dental health for your children. Instil and reinforce good habits like brushing and flossing at home. Educate your children about the dangers of sugary foods, and their healthy alternatives. Also, don’t forget to make their first visit to the dentist a positive experience. It is essential to lead by example – your own dental habits will shape your children’s habits.
See below to see what you can do as a care giver to ensure your children have the best start to good dental health, for all ages.
Tips for parents taking care of your childs teeth
0-2 years old
First teeth usually arrive around 6 months old. Clean your baby’s teeth with a baby toothbrush or a soft flannel.
Avoid giving your baby a bottle when they sleep. Bottles with milk, juice or any sugary liquid put teeth at risk of decay.
Never dip a dummy/pacifier in anything sweet.
Teething can be uncomfortable with associated symptoms such as diarrhoea, nappy rash, red cheeks, drooling, irritable and biting anything.
When you come in for your dental check bring the little one in too. Getting them use to being at the dentist and seeing you in the chair will help prepare them for their first visit.
2-5 years old
Remember to brush your child’s teeth twice a day. And ALWAYS AT NIGHT TIME before bed. Floss between the teeth that are touching.
See your friendly dentist at least once a year for a check up. Finding a kind dentist that your child feels comfortable with is important at this young age. A bad experience can lead them to avoiding dental visits in future.
Sucking thumbs, dummies or even tongues are common habits. Try to discourage this habit as this can have long term effects on growth and development of the jaws and crooked teeth.
Avoid sugary snacks and drinks and even fruit juices. Water is best.
Always use a fluoride toothpaste and make sure they SPIT.
5 years +
Parents should supervise brushing until their children are 7yrs old. Always use a fluoride toothpaste and don’t forget to spit!
Don’t forget to floss! Now that their big teeth are coming through, it’s important now more than ever to get in between.
Water is best. Avoid sugary snacks and drinks/juices.
- When playing sports, protect their teeth with a mouthguard. Your dentist can make a custom made one that fits best.
- Continue to see a dentist at least once a year. They will monitor their growth and development and assess whether orthodontics will be needed.