It is important to look after children’s teeth for a few reasons.
- Firstly, to get them into good habits that will carry over into adulthood.
- Secondly, the baby or ‘deciduous’ teeth act as placeholders for the adult teeth, if the baby teeth are lost early children are more likely to need braces.
Some first teeth can be in children’s mouth’s for over ten years, so it is important that they are healthy and non-painful for this time. The first adult teeth start coming through at around the age of five or six, so it is critical to be taking good care of these teeth.
Cleaning- it is important to be cleaning your children’s teeth as soon as they come through. You can get extra soft baby toothbrushes or just use a bit of gauze to wipe over the teeth.
Children need help with brushing until the age of 8. Below three years old, only a smear of toothpaste is needed, over three a pea sized blob of toothpaste is recommended.
It is a good idea to start bringing your child to the dentist from the age of two. We can catch any issues early and also make the experience as simple and positive as possible so that they are not afraid later on.
When the permanent first molars come through (around the age of six), we can consider fissure sealing the teeth. The biting surface’s of molars have pits and grooves in the teeth called ‘fissures’. Bacteria, in the form of plaque, can gather in these grooves and can be difficult to clean out. This is why these surfaces are prone to decay. The sealants cover over this rough surface and protect the tooth from decay. The picture below shows the surface of a molar before and after sealing the tooth.
The government child dental benefits scheme, is closing soon. This scheme currently covers children age 2-17, who are eligible for Medicare and families are receiving certain government benefits such as ‘Family Tax Benefit Part A.’ To check if your child is covered pop into Ocean Breeze Dental (3/73 The Trak Arcade, The Terrace, Ocean Grove) with their Medicare card.