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The Importance Of Childhood Oral Hygiene

Dental health and oral hygiene are just as important for infants, toddlers, and young children as they are for adults. As a parent, it’s important to establish good habits early on, to promote a lifetime of good oral health.

At the Fredericksburg, VA dental office of Dr. Lloyd Moss Jr. and Dr. Lloyd Moss, III, we love children and want to be your child’s first and forever dentist. We hope to be just one part of your child’s lifelong journey of dental care.

In the meantime, you can learn more about the importance of maintaining your child’s oral hygiene.

Keeping Your Child’s Teeth Clean

Oral hygiene begins in the days right after birth. Even though none of their teeth have come in yet, you can wipe their gums with a clean, moist washcloth to keep them clean. You can expect to see their first tooth by the time they’re around 6 months old, but some won’t get their first baby tooth until 12-14 months.

It’s important to note that as soon as your child’s first tooth pushes through their gums, they’re at risk for tooth decay. Until you think your child is capable of brushing his or her own teeth, help them do so twice a day with a child-size toothbrush. As soon as they have two teeth that touch, start flossing their teeth daily.

Why Childhood Oral Hygiene Is So Important

With children, it’s important to establish good habits as part of a regular routine to encourage the development of healthy teeth. Healthy baby teeth pave the way for healthy adult teeth. Creating good habits as soon as your little one’s teeth come in, encourages them to maintain good oral hygiene habits as they get older.

Additionally, caring for baby teeth, also known as primary teeth, is important for the alignment and spacing of permanent teeth. Permanent teeth are partially formed in infants and toddlers up to the age of 3. But those permanent teeth don’t replace the primary teeth until the age of six or later. If there is decay or bacteria build-up on a primary tooth, it can affect the permanent tooth below, setting your child up for poor oral hygiene.

Diet is important for good oral hygiene and healthy teeth as well. As much as possible, limit the amount of sugar your child eats, especially in between meals and in the evening.

Child’s First Dental Visit

An important part of maintaining good oral health is regular checkups with your dentist. At our Fredericksburg, VA dentist office, we want to see your child no later than their first birthday for their first dental visit, to make sure everything looks okay. We can also provide guidance on how to care for your little one’s teeth at home.

The earlier you bring your child to the dentist, the more likely they are to become comfortable with the process. Our staff is great with children. We will do everything we can to ease their fears, but it starts with you.

Morning visits tend to work best for children since they’re most rested and cooperative during that time. You should also maintain a positive attitude about the visit and talk about the visit in a positive and exciting way.

Keep an ongoing conversation about going to the dentist and caring for their teeth. Try reading books about going to the dentist or talking about visits to our office. Going to the dentist shouldn’t be scary!

We Can Help Care For Your Child’s Teeth

Our experienced and friendly staff at the office of Dr. Lloyd Moss, Jr. and Dr. Lloyd Moss, III, look forward to meeting you and your little one. We will make sure they’re as comfortable as possible as we examine their teeth and make sure everything is developing properly. We can also provide guidance for maintaining good oral hygiene in your family, in a way that encourages your child to take care of their teeth.

To schedule an appointment, call our Fredericksburg, VA office at (540) 369-4926 or fill out our online form.