Teething can be a tricky and testing time for new parents.
All children experience teething in different ways. For some, it’s relatively straightforward and not too painful. For others, it’s a more drawn-out and uncomfortable time.
For parents, there are a few things you can do to help soothe a teething baby.
Through this post, we hope to help you understand what you should and shouldn’t be doing to help protect and nurture those new teeth once they start to poke through the gums.
Why it’s important to protect those baby teeth
We all know that as a baby, your first set of teeth are somewhat dispensable. Eventually, they are going to fall out and be replaced by a new permanent set.
The somewhat temporary nature of those first teeth is a great thing, as we all know how difficult it can be to persuade children of the importance of maintaining good oral health and hygiene.
Nevertheless, parents should take as much time and care as possible to protect their babies’ new teeth as this will potentially help to save them from painful and inconvenient dental issues later in their childhood.
From the moment teeth start to come through they are exposed to acids and bacteria that begin to decay them. Given that babies are frequently put to bed with a bottle of milk, this is something that is important to keep in mind.
Leaving a coating of milk in the mouth and on newly developed teeth overnight or during nap time leaves a lot of time for the teeth to be exposed to higher levels of acid and therefore increases the risk of decay.
Dental health and hygiene for babies and toddlers
This great and detailed article from the Canadian Dental Association contains a really helpful step-by-step guide to brushing your baby’s teeth, and here at Kherani Dental at Aspen, we are happy to walk you through these techniques in our clinic.
It’s important to choose the right toothbrush for your baby as teething is a very sensitive time for the gums and you will want to make sure that the brush you choose is soft enough not to place too much pressure on those already sensitive areas.
One tip that we always recommend to our patients is that you don’t always have to start with a brush straight away. Sometimes, sensitive gums are better handled with a small amount of toothpaste on the end of mum or dad’s finger.
Using a finger instead of a brush means that no bristles can irritate the gums and we quite often find that babies (particularly those who have had a more difficult teething experience) are less irritated when their parents brush their teeth this way than with a traditional brush.
Another important factor in maintaining the best oral health for your teething baby is the amount of toothpaste you use. The fluoride in toothpaste is an important part of overall dental health, as it helps to protect the teeth from the acids that cause tooth decay.
Healthlink BC recommends you start using a pea-sized amount of fluoride-containing toothpaste as soon as your baby’s first teeth begin to show.
Make your baby’s first trip to the dentist
It’s never too early to book in your baby’s first dental appointment.
Here at Kherani Dental at Aspen, we always welcome parents to bring in their children as soon as their new teeth are formed and showing.
Introducing children to the dentist at an early age helps to avoid them developing dental anxiety as they get older and helps us as parents to stay on top of their dental health by consulting with our highly experienced family dentists about the best techniques and recommendations for their child.
To make an appointment at Kherani Dental at Aspen, please call us at (403) 263-0055 or book an appointment online.