Importance of Dental and Oral Health for Babies
Dental and Oral Health for Babies
A baby’s oral health will lay the foundation for strong and healthy permanent teeth. An irregular brushing routine and improper diet is known to cause tooth decay or tooth loss in early childhood, and may even have an adverse effect on permanent teeth. The American Dental Association recommends that parents take their child to see the dentist within six months of the eruption of their first tooth, or by the end of their first year. This underlines the importance of maintaining good dental and oral health for babies. Let’s take a look at some of the reasons behind this recommendation:
- Decay in Primary Dentition: It usually begins when the child is six months old, and completed when the child is two and a half years old. The mineralized enamel in a baby’s teeth is less dense, making them prone to caries.
- Eating and Chewing: Primary teeth are a “must” for children in order to learn how to bite and chew properly, and move on to adult food. These teeth help children in digesting food easily. As such keeping them healthy through regular brushing with a child-toothpaste from the time of eruption is extremely important.
- Speech: A full set of primary teeth is essential for the child to learn to speak and pronounce properly. Moreover, their proper alignment also influences alignment and spacing of permanent teeth.
Parents need to pay attention to the dental and oral health of their babies. They should supervise, and take the lead in brushing the child’s teeth (with an extra soft toothbrush!) until the child is ready to do it for him- or herself. Parents also need to instill healthy eating habits in kids, especially their sugary food intake. A regular dental visit is necessary as the dentist can guide parents through taking care of their child’s dental health.