Children want all of the sweet things in life. Who doesn’t anyway? Adults only happen to know the sweet things can also hurt. As a parent, you have to make conscious efforts to protect your child’s oral health. This way, you can avoid the many problems that come with dental caries/tooth decay. In this article, we will see what tooth decay exists. We’ll also learn how our diet contributes to it and what can be done about it.
What Is Tooth Decay?
When we take sugary substances, bacteria in the mouth acts on the sugar. This process results in the production of acids that erode the enamel of the teeth, causing decay. The more one’s intake of sugar, the higher the chances of this happening.
How Can We Prevent It In Children?
The single most important preventive tip is maintaining good oral hygiene. Children, as we know are largely incapable of doing this for themselves. Hence, the onus lies on a parent to do this for their child. For babies that have not started teething yet, clean with a soft cloth, foam or gauze pad. When teething starts, use a soft toothbrush to clean their teeth. Toothpaste should always contain fluoride. Flossing can start when the teeth start to touch each other. Periodic trips to the dentist are important too. One may also consider dental sealants, a protective coating on the teeth that prevents direct contact between food and teeth.
Avoid sharing spoons and other things with your baby. You need to keep your mouth clean too. Do not leave a nipple or bottle in the baby’s mouth for a prolonged period. They shouldn’t sleep with one in their mouth. Prolonged contact makes it more likely that these acids will form. Always clean their mouth before going to bed.
For older children, be intentional about sugar intake. Cut it down. When they take high-sugar foods, they should rinse their mouth or brush their teeth. Offer healthier, low-sugar foods constantly.
Constant check-ups at the dentist help a lot. There, you’ll also get professional advice on preventing tooth decay. Stay healthy!