According to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD), all pregnant women should continue their routine dental checkups throughout their pregnancy. Research shows mothers with poor oral health are more likely to pass bacteria to their children, leading to cavities. Periodontal disease in pregnant women can also lead to preterm birth and low birth weight.
To avoid the spread of bacteria to your infant, follow these guidelines:
The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD), the American Dental Association (ADA) and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommend parents establish their child’s dental home before their child turns one or around the time their first tooth erupts.
Having a dental home increases the likelihood that your child will receive the best possible preventative and routine oral care. This will also help prevent dental emergencies down the line.
Going to the dentist should be positive, and creating a memorable experience begins at home. Start by discussing the upcoming visit with your child to ease their mind. Make sure to let them know the dentist and staff will explain each procedure and answer your child’s questions.
When discussing the dentist with your child, avoid using phrases that could evoke negative feelings, such as “hurt,” “pull,” “needle,” “drill” or “shot.” Instead, our dental team uses words that have similar meanings, but are positive and won’t frighten your child.
The first baby teeth will likely erupt between the ages of six months to a year, although it’s possible for it to occur earlier. Often, the two bottom front teeth are the first to erupt, followed by the four upper front teeth. Expect your child to have their first full set of teeth by their third birthday.
One of the easiest ways for your child to develop early childhood carries is through “baby bottle tooth decay,” caused by the continuous exposure of your child’s teeth to sugary drinks. These liquids could be formula, breast milk, or fruit juice. While the upper front teeth are most commonly exposed, baby bottle tooth decay can affect any of your child’s teeth.
White spots on the tooth surface or gum line as well as tooth sensitivity are signs of early baby bottle tooth decay. However, a more severe case may experience:
If your child is experiencing any of these symptoms, contact our office immediately to prevents any further damage occurring to your child’s teeth.
Baby bottle tooth decay is easy to prevent. Make sure to only send your child to bed with water, and limit the amount of sugary drinks and food they consume. After each meal, clean your child’s baby gums, and gently brush your child’s first tooth morning and night.
Sippy cups are only meant to be a training tool for children under one year of age transitioning from a baby bottle to a cup. If your child is consuming sugary drinks throughout the day from a sippy cup (such as milk or fruit juice), their teeth become soaked in sugar, causing cavity-forming bacteria. The best way for your child to use a sippy cup is by only filling it with water throughout the day. However, it’s acceptable for your child to consume milk or fruit juice at mealtimes.