Something about Teething
Should I use fluoride toothpaste for my baby?
You can use a smear of fluoride toothpaste to help keep the teeth hard. Choose a mild flavour. It is recommended that regular fluoride toothpaste be used to maximize the effect of fluoride.
I don’t live in a place with fluoride in the water. What should I do?
Ask the local school dental therapist or your dentist for advice. They will tell you which fluoride to use to give your baby’s teeth the best protection.
What causes decay?
When foods with sugars are eaten, bacteria in the mouth make acids that dissolve teeth to form holes. The main risk for tooth decay is frequent drinking and eating foods which contain sugars. Therefore avoid giving your baby a bottle or a sipper cup with juice, cordial, or other sweet drinks to carry around or to go to sleep with. If you have to use a bottle, just make sure it has only water in it.
What if I have decay – are my children at risk?
If you have decay, you should make sure you get your teeth fixed because decay is contagious (catching). You can pass on the decay bacteria to your baby. Remember not to share spoons and food with your baby to avoid passing on your bacteria. Your dentist can advise you other ways to decrease the risks for your baby.
When should I get my child’s teeth checked?
Ideally, all children should have their first dental visit by the time they are one year old. You can ask the local dental therapist or your family dentist. The therapist or dentist can check for any developing problems and can give you good advice about ways to keep the teeth healthy.
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