How Do I Prevent Cavities In My Child’s Teeth

1.  ORAL HYGIENE: Good oral hygiene removes bacteria and food particles that combine to create cavities.  For infants, use a wet gauze or clean washcloth to wipe the plaque from your child’s teeth and gums.  Avoid putting your child to bed with a bottle filled with anything other than water.

For all children, we recommend brushing their teeth at least twice a day and flossing at least once daily.  We also recommend a fluoride rinse for those children that are able to rinse and spit out.

2.  GOOD DIET: Healthy eating habits lead to healthy teeth. Like the rest of the body, the teeth, bones and the soft tissues of the mouth need a well-balanced diet.  Children should eat a variety of foods from the five major food groups.  Most snacks that children eat can lead to cavity formation.  The more frequently a child snacks, the greater the chance for tooth decay.  How long food remains in the mouth also plays a role.  For example, hard candy and breath mints stay in the mouth a long time, which cause longer acid attacks on the tooth enamel. If your child must snack, choose nutritious foods such as vegetables, low-fat yogurt and low-fat cheese, which are healthier and better for children’s teeth.

3.  DENTAL VISITS: The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends visits every six months to the pediatric dentist, beginning at your child’s first birthday.  These visits are very important and will prevent small issues from turning into larger problems such as toothaches, loss of teeth.