When it comes to your child’s health, you want the very best. There’s no doubt about it, you’re providing your child with the most trusted pediatric dental care in the Encino, Tarzana, and San Fernando Valley area, but what should you do between their six month cleanings? How should you care for the health of their teeth in the best way possible? Our pediatric dentists here at Encino Pediatric Dental Group have some wonderful benefits to share with you: Reasons Why Your Child Should Use a Fluoride Toothpaste.
WHAT DOES FLUORIDE DO, AND WHY IS IT IMPORTANT?
There are a couple different ways your child, and yourself, can benefit from fluoride, and it’s through either systemic or topical benefits.
Fluoride doesn’t just benefit children, it benefits adults as well. Why? Fluoride promotes increased gums and teeth strength. What does this mean? This means that all of the foods and beverages your kiddo is consuming will have a harder time bonding to the hard surface of the tooth and the soft surface of the gums. Why is this important for your child’s oral health?
Fluoride can actually help your kid’s teeth become stronger and healthier. When your child’s teeth first erupt through their gums, fluoride, through a topical treatment (toothpaste), helps the fresh and weak tooth enamel become stronger by remineralizing it. Additionally, fluoride also has the ability to reverse the early signs of tooth decay; yes, even if your kiddo only has a few teeth!
AT WHAT AGE SHOULD YOUR CHILD START USING FLUORIDE TOOTHPASTE?
Fluoride toothpaste may be used from the very beginning. As soon as you see teeth sprouting through your child’s gums (1-month to 3-years-old), you should be using no more than a grain-of-rice-size of fluoride toothpaste. With that being said, you will be brushing your child’s teeth for them until they can learn to control their toothbrush effectively. For children who are 3- to 6-years-old, dispense no more than a pea-size of fluoride toothpaste onto their brush. They should be brushing their teeth for at least 2 minutes. A good way for them to time themselves is by singing the ABCs in their head or by putting an easy-to-use timer in the bathroom with all of the toothbrush supplies.
AT WHAT AGE SHOULD MY CHILD START USING FLUORIDE MOUTHWASH?
There are many amazing benefits of using fluoride mouthwash, and some of them include reducing tooth decay by increasing the tooth’s resistance to decay. However, children should not use it until they’re older than 6-years-old or directed to do so by our pediatric dentist. Why? Children who are 6-years-old or younger have not yet developed their swallowing reflex. This means they will be much more likely to swallow the fluoride mouthwash instead of spitting it back out into the sink.
Feel free to call the pediatric dentists at Encino Pediatric Dental Group a call today; we can answer any and all of your questions about your child’s oral health, including any about fluoride toothpaste. To schedule your kiddo’s appointment, call us today!