Dental care for you and your baby

Avoiding cavities

We recommend avoiding giving babies any sort of sweetened liquids such as flavored drinks or soda.  Without proper oral care, even the sugars present in fruit juice, formula, milk, and breast milk can cause decay, so regular teeth and gum cleaning is vital.  Also, if putting your baby to sleep at night with a bottle of milk or formula, it is important to brush the teeth afterward.  Liquids with carbohydrates (such as milk) in prolonged contact with teeth after falling asleep are profound risk factors for severe early childhood caries, also known as baby bottle decay.

First Visit to the dentist

It's recommended that you bring your baby in for a visit within six months of the first tooth's eruption – usually around his or her first birthday. Since decay can occur as soon as teeth are seen in the mouth, the earlier a dental home is established, the more likely problems can be avoided.  We'll look for early signs of problems with your baby's oral heath, and discuss best practices for taking care of your little one's teeth. Remember that preparing for each dental visit with a positive attitude goes a long way toward making your child comfortable with regular checkups.

Setting a good example

As part of the natural learning process, little ones are adept at mimicking adult behavior, and you can take advantage of this talent. Brush and floss daily while your child is watching, and he or she will notice your good habits.  As soon as your child shows interest, offer a toothbrush of his or her own and encourage your toddler to "brush" along with you (of course, you will have to finish the job!)  Most children don't have the dexterity necessary to properly clean their own teeth until they're about seven to eight years of age, so it remains important to follow up on their brushing jobs until then. Try different tactics to make brushing fun: pick a toothpaste flavor they find tasty, a toothbrush with a favorite character on it, sing songs about brushing, or use a toddler brushing app.  The primary goal is to instill healthy oral habits at an early age to set your child up for a lifetime of healthy, cavity-free teeth!