Beautiful parents and their daughter are looking at camera and smiling while brushing teeth

How to protect your child’s smile

While parents know how to care for their own smiles, they may be unsure as to the ways they can care for their child’s. Taking care of the teeth is important in infants, toddlers, and children. Below are some recommendations for protecting the smile from periodontal disease and tooth decay from our team at Park View Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontics in New York, NY:

For infants

  • Wipe the gums using a warm and wet washcloth after feedings. This can also be done when the baby starts developing their teeth as well.
  • Avoid putting infants to sleep immediately after feeding, either breastfeeding or bottle feeding, without washing the gums.
  • Avoid putting the baby down with a bottle of milk, which can contribute to dental caries in the first teeth.

For toddlers

  • At this age, children should stop using pacifiers as an aide to calm themselves as they can cause significant damage to the structures of the mouth with continued use.
  • Do not put a toddler to bed with a bottle or sippy cup of milk or juice, which can add unwanted sugars and acids to the teeth that contribute to tooth decay.
  • Start teaching children how to brush and floss their teeth at this age, when they are building the foundation of oral health and wellness habits.
  • Use a soft toothbrush, and if your child is under the age of 3, avoid the use of a fluoride toothpaste.

For school-aged children

  • Ensure children are brushing their teeth for at least two minutes after meals and are thorough in brushing all surfaces of the teeth, gums, and tongue.
  • Further educate children on how to floss their teeth, especially if they have braces that can make it more difficult to do.
  • Take children in for an orthodontic evaluation to see if treatments may be needed in the near future.
  • Ensure children see their dentist every six months at Park View Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontics for cleanings and evaluations.

Learn more today

The team at Park View Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontics work closely with patients in the New York, NY area. If you are looking for a pediatric dental team that makes your child’s smile their first priority, call our team at (212) 879-6518. The office is located at 800A Fifth Avenue, Suite #303.

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