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Relationship Matters


Kids’ Dental Care

By learning to tackle such issues as toothache, you lay a good health foundation for your child to build on.

Kids’ Dental Care

For cleaner teeth
  • Establish brushing as a daily routine as soon as your child gets their first teeth. It is good practice to brush them twice a day, in the morning, and before they go to bed at night.

  • Gradually teach your child to brush their own teeth, but be there to supervise them at all times.

  • Teach your baby to spit out the toothpaste after brushing. At least until your child learns to do this, use fluoride-free toothpaste that is meant for infants.

  • Ensure that your child eats a healthy diet. Include plenty of calcium-rich foods such as milk and cheese; calcium plays an important role in fortifying the teeth and bones.

  • Sugar intake affects the acid level in the mouth, making teeth more vulnerable for about half an hour. Brushing teeth half an hour after a sugary treat helps to protect the teeth better. Also, ration the amount of sugar in your child’s diet.

  • Encourage your child to develop a taste for healthy and natural snacks such as fruits and nuts, instead of sugary and starchy foods. One way to do this is to set an example yourself.

  • Ensure that your child has regular dental check ups.

Dental challenges

Young children are entirely dependent on their parents for their dental health. As parents, here are what to do when faced with dental problems in children:
  • If the child complains of toothache, make sure it’s a toothache. Depending on how well your child can communicate, he or she may actually have sore gums or a bitten tongue.

  • Deal with the cause which may be as a result of candy, chocolate pastries and soft drinks. These foods contain refined carbohydrates and sugar in various forms.

  • Place a little wad of dried mint leaf around the tooth and make your child spit out every few minutes. Peppermint is good for relieving pain.

  • Do not pull out a loose tooth. Let your child judge if the tooth is loose enough to come out and let them pull the tooth themselves.

  • Apply a warm damp towel to the child’s cheeks from the outside.

  • If you are buying over-the-counter pain medication for your child, remember that acetaminophen (not aspirin) should be used for children and teenagers.

  • Visit the dentist with your child. Ensure that the dentist is child-friendly and uses methods that involve minimum pain. Let the dentist decide whether it is necessary to use anesthesia to ease the pain.

  • Avoid hitting, threatening and screaming at the child. This will only confuse them and make them go into a shell.

  • Appreciate your child’s efforts in remaining calm in the face of pain. Reward him adequately with a small present and let him take a day off from school to rest, if necessary.

Source: Punch

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