As a parent or child’s teacher, it is your responsibility to stress the need for your kids to brush at least twice a day and also enforce it. Dental caries are one of the most common infections that affect the oral health of most children. Brushing and flossing may not be enough to prevent cavities from surfacing. There are other dental cleaning treatments that can help you maintain healthy oral hygiene for your toddler.
Cavities are caused by bacteria. There is a buildup of bacteria in the mouths of an individual, be it a toddler or an adult. Everyone has a measure of bacteria in their mouths; it is inevitable to go about life, free from bacteria, but the adverse effects of these bacteria can be curtailed and put under check when certain dental hygiene measures are put in place. These would be recommended by the dental hygienist to keep your teeth clean and free from bacterial troubles.
On the flip side, when these bacteria in the mouth are not attended to, or the parents of the toddler in question fail to monitor the daily oral hygiene and care for the teeth of their toddler, the bacteria in the toddler’s mouth will begin to develop into what we know as plaque.
Plaque is identified as a white sticky substance. It contains a high concentration of bacteria. It is believed that every plaque has millions of bacteria in them. They gradually begin to coat the teeth of your toddler, and the longer they stay, the more the chances of the toddler developing cavities. Plaques are formed when the bacteria in the mouth of the child mix with food (leftover particles in the mouth), acid, and saliva.
Cavities are identified as small holes in the teeth; they are more common in toddlers and children. Some parents neglect the appearance of cavities in their toddler’s teeth, especially when it is found on the child’s baby or primary teeth. It is believed that the baby or primary teeth will eventually fall off, so there is no need to be bothered. This is where they get it wrong.
Here in Weston, Florida, we have professional toddler dentists who specialize in providing dental cleaning. Their duty is to help clean the teeth and also prescribe ways that, if adhered to, will help to prevent cavities from developing in the mouth of your toddler. Brushing and flossing are not enough to stop cavities from occurring. The risk of cavities increases when a toddler does not do them in the right manner or fails to do them at all.
It is best to identify those factors that are responsible for causing cavities in children before we discuss the ways to prevent them.
Factors Responsible For Cavities
1. Poor Oral Hygiene:
Just as earlier mentioned, poor oral hygiene can result in a toddler developing cavities. The child may find it burdensome to brush at least twice a day and floss regularly. They may even find it difficult to floss on their own, hence, the need to do this for them until they have to come of age and have learned correctly how to floss their teeth correctly.
2. Unhealthy Diet:
This is another factor that causes cavities from developing in the toddler’s teeth. Most toddlers have grown used to consuming sugary meals, in the form of chocolates, sweets, ice cream, cakes, and lots more. It is not wrong to feed on these, but when the consumption is coupled with poor oral hygiene, then the child is more likely to develop cavities.
How To Prevent Cavities In Your Toddler
Toddlers need help with brushing their teeth because they have not yet come of age to take on the responsibility of caring for their teeth. They have no idea of how important it is for them to keep healthy oral hygiene. It is the duty of the parent to see to it that the child’s oral health is well cared for.
1. Cleaning the child’s teeth with a soft and damp cloth: Most toddlers have not started growing teeth, while others have begun. Whether their teeth have started sprouting or not, they must have a good mouth cleaning session regularly as prescribed by the dentist. One way to achieve this is with the use of a soft, small damp cloth. This can be used to clean the gums and tongue properly, before and after eating.
2. Keeping healthy oral hygiene: just as earlier mentioned, toddlers do not know how important it is for them to keep healthy oral hygiene, but they can be shown how to do it. Children are good at replicating what they see you do and what you make them do over a long period. Therefore, the parent must show the child how to brush and floss at least twice a day, in the morning, and before retiring to bed at night.
3. Teach them water therapy: Water is a very accessible and recommendable substance for both adults and children. It is advised to drink water as often as possible to stay hydrated. But water does not only keep you hydrated; it also helps to wash off food particles that are still in the mouth. Have your toddler drink water frequently; this will also help prevent bacteria from lurking around.
4. Cut down on their sugar intake or create a balanced diet and nutrition plan for your toddler: it is almost impossible to avoid meals that contain lots of sugar in them, but there can be a balance in their consumption of those meals. Juices can be mixed with water to reduce the sugar content. You can also have your toddler brush their mouth after having ice cream, chocolates, etc. Make sure though these sweet treats are consumed only occasionally.
The oral health of a child cannot be overemphasized. What is worth doing is worth doing well. If brushing and flossing are worth doing, then they should be done well. If a proper diet is good, then it should be done well with close monitoring of your toddler.
It is possible for your toddler to go through the childhood stage free from cavities; all it takes are a few deliberate steps to be taken by you and your toddler. It is easier, cheaper, and better to prevent cavities than to treat them. Do remember to visit a toddler dentist in Weston today.