Dental Tips for Kids Under Two: What to Do While Waiting for Your Child to Become Eligible for Dental Health Benefits
In most parts of the country, the government offers dental assistance to eligible children between the ages of two and seventeen. However, if your child is not yet two, you may be wondering what you can do to support their dental health. Here are some ideas to help:
1. Don't share cavity germs with your child.
Cavities are caused by certain types of bacteria, and as an adult, if you have a cavity or several cavities, you likely have cavity-causing bacteria in your mouth. Keep your little ones away from this bacteria as long as possible. Don't clean their dummy with your mouth, don't share toothbrushes or do anything else that could cause your mouth bacteria to travel into your bub's mouth.
2. Introduce your child to dental care early.
If brushing and dental care is suddenly sprung on your child at age two, that may be a bit overwhelming for them. Even if your child is not yet old enough to be covered by the government's dental programs, get your child used to the idea of dental care. Before your child has teeth, wipe their gums occasionally with a bit of clean gauze wrapped around your finger, and as your child starts to get teeth, gently brush them with a small child-sized brush.
3. Use fluoride-free toothpaste for babies.
Note, however, that you should not use adult toothpaste for babies and toddlers. Adult toothpaste has fluoride which should not be swallowed by little ones in large doses. To avoid that, use a toothpaste made especially for babies or make your own fluoride-free toothpaste.
4. Limit sweet snacks.
In addition to promoting oral hygiene, you also want to promote a dental friendly diet. To that end, try to limit juices or sweet foods. In particular, stay away from fake fruit chews that are likely to stick to the sides of your child's teeth and gums. If you like to give those items to your child as an occasional treat, just get used to helping them brush afterward.
5. Check the rules in your area about when your child can access free or low cost dental care.
So that you can get your child in the dental chair as soon as possible, check the eligibility rules in your area. In some cases, your child becomes eligible the calendar year they turn two. As a result, if your child turns two in November, for example, you may be able to schedule an appointment in January or February when they're about 15 or 16 months old.
For more information, contact a business such as Precision Dental Care @ Kingston.