Taking care for the normal and healthy growth of your child’s teeth begins even before he was born. In the prenatal stage, the expectant mom must be encouraged to eat nutritious foods (especially the foods that are rich sources of calcium) and takes time to expose herself in the early morning rays of the sun for vitamin D. Taking iron supplementation is also advisable to prevent anemia and for healthy bone marrows production which are deposited inside the bones.
Your baby’s teeth are important because these will help him to eat well, act as guide for the growth of his permanent teeth, stimulate his jaw to grow, and play a major role in his proper speech development especially the front teeth. Central incisor usually erupts during your baby’s sixth month; lateral incisor on his tenth month; cuspid during his eighteenth month; first molar on the fourteenth month while the second molar on the twenty fourth month.
But as the baby grows older, and rapidly from one phase of development to another, nourishing foods are not enough to help sustain or maintain the needs for the proper development of his teeth. This is why a parent should teach his child the proper tooth brushing techniques to prevent tooth decay and other dental problems.
- You could start by brushing the outer part of the upper teeth from the gums downward. You should be doing this slowly as your child, having introduced to brushing his teeth for the first time, may find it an unpleasant act. Talk to him while brushing his teeth so he would not totally feel how the whole brushing thing goes.
- After having done brushing the outer part of the upper teeth, you could now proceed to brushing the outer part of the lower teeth from the gums upward. Again, you should do this slowly and with gentle strokes.
- Next is to brush the inner part of the upper teeth from the gums upward. While doing this, explain to him why it is important for a child to brush his teeth.
- Now you could go on brushing the inner part of the lower teeth from the gums upward. Congratulate him when he’s done. Use the words “nice,” “very good,” or “yes, you made it,” to express your appreciation.
- Using the short back-and-forth stroking “scrubbing” motion, brush the upper chewing surfaces of the teeth. After having done this, you could request him to smile for a moment flashing his teeth. Then tell him, “See, they look better than ever.”
- You could now proceed to brushing the lower chewing surface of the teeth. Always remember to do it slowly, stroking gently, and give compliments in between.
- Next is brushing the tongue. Yes, you have to include the tongue. It is part of the whole oral hygiene package. So make sure you are including it.
- Finally, after having done brushing, use dental floss to clean in-between the teeth. Brushing alone is not enough as there are areas in the teeth the brush could not reach.