Prevention really is better than cure.
The cost of tooth decay isn't just a matter of money. Decay damages irreplaceable tooth structure, and though your dentist can help compensate for the damage, we all agree that the fewer fillings, root treatments and crowns we have to undergo, the better. In children, damaged teeth can also cause trouble eating, affect speech development and lower self-esteem.
As a parent, education is your best weapon in protecting your child’s teeth. Here's some information you should know:
For any answers, advice or treatment your child needs, contact Midrand Dental Excellence.
Early childhood caries, nicknamed baby bottle tooth decay, can be caused by sugary drinks. This includes drinks with a lot of natural sugars, like milk and formula. Avoid filling your baby's bottle with fruit juice or soft drinks, and don't dip pacifiers in sugar or honey. Only use water for bedtime bottles.
Avoid fluoride supplements like tablets or drops: research shows fluoride is most effective when rubbed on with the toothbrush
Avoid aggressive brushing back and forth, which can damage teeth and gums. Instead, tilt the brush towards the gums and brush gently in small circles, touching every part of the tooth you can reach.
Children should brush their teeth at least twice a day. As soon as their permanent teeth begin growing in, they should also start flossing.
Pacifiers are usually easier to give up than thumb sucking, and most children outgrow these habits by themselves between ages 2 and 4. If they don't, parents should discourage them from age 4, but being too harsh can do more harm than good. Praise your child for not sucking their thumb rather than scolding them for doing so. Be aware that for many children, thumb sucking is a comfort when they're feeling anxious. Try to remove the cause of the anxiety, and if that isn't possible, praise and reward the child for their bravery if they can get resist the urge.
If the problem persists, talk to your child's dentist.