If you have a child, you will want to know all you can about keeping their teeth healthy. One way to do this is by learning about some of the most common baby teeth myths. From learning about these myths, you can avoid making mistakes in caring for your child's teeth, helping them to keep their pearly whites strong.
Myth #1 – It is unnecessary to take your child to the dentist until they are older.
Though you may be tempted to delay your child's first dental visit for a while, it is best to take your child to the dentist soon after their first tooth comes in. At the latest, you should schedule their visit by the time of their first birthday. This is because baby teeth, though temporary, are still extremely important to take care of. For one thing, they act as placeholders so that adult teeth are not crowded when they come in. For another thing, taking your child to the dentist early should help them to learn good dental habits. If they get into the habit of going to the dentist regularly, this should help them to grow comfortable with the experience.
Myth #2 – There is no harm in giving your child a bottle of milk or juice at bedtime.
Some parents are accustomed to giving their child a milk bottle just before the child goes to bed. While they may do this to calm their child down, this habit can do more harm than good. This is because kids are at risk of baby bottle tooth decay if they fall asleep with a bottle of milk or juice in their mouths. The risk of developing tooth decay is greater when asleep since people produce less saliva while sleeping. So to prevent baby bottle tooth decay, make sure that your child finishes any bottles they are drinking before they go to sleep. If you do give them a bottle at bedtime, be sure to fill it with water instead of a drink that has sugar in it.
Myth #3 – Fluoride toothpaste shouldn't be used on young children's teeth.
While you may be reluctant to brush your child's teeth with fluoride toothpaste, doing this is actually a good habit. The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends using a smear of it for children under 3 years of age. For children in the age range of 3 to 6, a pea-sized amount should be used. Fluoride toothpaste is important to use since it helps teeth stay strong against harmful acids.
From learning about these myths, you can ensure your child's teeth stay strong and healthy. For more information on caring for your child's teeth, consult a family dentist.