Children’s Care: At Pennino Family Dentistry, We Welcome Your Kids!

As a parent, you not only nurture and love your child, you also ensure their physical health, in which oral health plays a big role. Here’s a quick guide to keeping your child’s smile its brightest and most healthy.

Daily Routine For Babies

  • Even before the teeth appear, pour warm water on a soft piece of gauze or a “baby washcloth” (thinner and soften).
  • Wipe their gums gently to remove bacteria on their gums (it is there the moment they drink milk).
  • Get your child used to having something in their mouth touching their gums.

When The First Tooth Appears

  • Using a soft-bristled toothbrush, clean the tooth – and subsequent teeth as they emerge.
  • Use a very, very small amount of toothpaste (like a grain of rice) as wee ones can’t spit it out. As every child is different, we’ll guide you in what type to use.
  • When your child can spit, talk to us for a professional perspective on fluoridated toothpastes.
  • Floss your child’s teeth as soon as they have two teeth side-by-side as they have the same risk of damage caused by plaque and food residue as adults.
  • Never put a child to bed with anything but water.
  • Help your child brush until they have the dexterity to do it accurately and thoroughly on their own. How old your child is when they can do this varies. Often, it correlates with…

When Your Older Child Can Write Their Name

  • When your child has increased dexterity, it’s time for them to take over brushing, flossing, and rinsing.
  • Brush teeth at least twice a day, and especially before bedtime. Increase toothpaste volume to that of a small pea.
  • Again, only provide water at bedtime.
  • Floss once a day. By this time, they should begin flossing themselves.
  • Always supervise. Kids need their parents to remind them, encourage them, assist them, and then inspect the excellent job.

Tweens & Teens

  • They’re independently brushing and flossing but do need reminders (sometimes constant!) to take care of their teeth.
  • What motivates teens to achieve a good oral hygiene routine? Discussing the importance of fresh breath.

Children’s care for primary teeth is important because…

  • Primary teeth allow the introduction of food from various groups, providing nutrition and enjoyment.
  • They give shape to your child’s face.
  • Baby teeth also guide the emergence of permanent teeth, critical when learning to eat and speak.
  • They have thinner enamel (the outside, white layer of the tooth) than adult teeth which puts them at risk for early childhood tooth decay.
  • Children can get gum disease when plaque and tartar are allowed to build up.
  • Clean teeth are socially expected.
  • Establishing an excellent homecare routine for kids sets them up for a lifetime of benefits from a healthy mouth, confidence, and a beautiful smile.