Oral and dental health of your child first teeth

As soon as babies are born, almost all first teeth are formed, although they are hidden under the gums. These teeth typically begin to erupt when the baby is six months old, or they appear somewhat through the gums. Of course, some babies may have teething earlier or later. This is normal. Usually, the first teeth that come out in babies are the lower front teeth. Following them, two more of the lower teeth take place, along with the upper front four teeth. After that, the teeth gradually take their place in the mouth, usually on both sides of the jaws at the same time. When your baby is 36 months old, there should be 20 baby teeth in his mouth. These first teeth are typically spaced apart. Due to the difference in size between permanent teeth and decurrent teeth, these gaps help to provide sufficient space for permanent teeth. These gaps between the teeth also make it easier for your child to decontaminate his teeth.

Care of first teeth

Although first teeth will eventually fall out, they are just as important as permanent teeth.

Milk teeth:

It helps the child to bite and chew food.

It makes the child seem more sympathetic.

It helps the child to speak correctly.

They retain the necessary place for the child's permanent teeth.

They guide the permanent teeth to settle in their places.

For these reasons, it is very important that you take good care of your child's baby teeth.

When your baby has four teeth lined up side by side in the upper or lower jaw, you should brush his teeth twice a day. For this, you should choose a soft toothbrush. At the same time, you can soak the brush in warm water for a few minutes to soften it even more.

You should brush your teeth with a special fluoride toothpaste for children, using as much as a chickpea grain, or just with water. You should remember that your child will prefer to swallow toothpaste instead of spitting it out. Ingestion of too much fluoride, on the other hand, can lead to cosmetic problems (fluorosis) in permanent teeth. You should wipe the areas that are toothless by wetting the gauze or cheesecloth. You should floss once a day when your child's teeth touch each other.

Since the waters in Turkey are fluoridated, there is usually no need to take fluoride in the form of tablets. However, if the water in your area is not fluoridated, you can make sure that the required amount of fluoride is taken by your child by consulting your dentist or paediatrician. The point to be considered in this regard is the cosmetic problems that may occur in permanent teeth due to the excess dose of fluoride.

After a while, your child will want to brush his teeth himself. You should allow your child to brush his teeth, without forgetting that you are responsible for cleaning them yourself. coordination and dexterity will not be enough for him to brush well until he is 6-8 years old. However, after this age, you should also check after your child brushes his teeth.

What is bottle caries?

Bottle caries are cavities that can quickly destroy your baby's teeth. It is possible to be protected from this situation. This condition occurs when your baby's teeth are in prolonged contact with sugars, which are made up of carbohydrates. When a liquid with carbohydrate content, such as fruit juice and milk, remains in the mouth, bacteria begin to feed on sugars. Thus, bacteria produce acid, and if they stay in the mouth for enough time, they begin to form caries on the teeth.

In this case, your baby often:

If he sleeps with a bottle filled with milk, juice, sugar water or all other drinks other than just water:

If he drinks sugary liquid or milk in his bottle to relax during the day

If he uses false nipples soaked in sugar, honey or other sugary liquids

If breast milk is not given with carbohydrates, it does not cause caries. There is a risk of caries in babies who are fed formula besides breast milk.

It is important how often your baby drinks, as well as what he drinks. The longer your child keeps a liquid other than water in his mouth, the greater the risk of caries is. For this reason, it is dangerous for your baby to sleep with a bottle or to use a bottle as a false breast during the day. Although other teeth are affected by bottle caries, the upper front teeth are the most damaged. Bottle cavities can only occur if there is a bacterium called streptococcus mutans in your baby's mouth. 1% of bacteria is in the mouth of children with small caries but when forming mutans, this rate increases to 50% in children with early childhood caries.

These mutans are commonly found the baby pass from mother to child between the ages of 6-31 months. This period is called the infection window. For your child to continue his life without caries, you also need to pay attention to your oral and dental health.

In bottle caries, the upper incisors are primarily affected. Caries usually begins on the back of the teeth, which are places that are not easily visible. Then the back teeth of the upper jaw are affected, and then the back teeth of the lower jaw. The lower incisors are usually not affected by this condition, because the tongue comes over them, preventing them from being exposed to liquid and thus preventing them from being affected by bacteria.

Carious teeth that have not been treated can cause pain and infection. These may require a more comprehensive and complicated treatment. Very badly decayed teeth can be removed to eliminate infection, reduce the risk of infection spreading to the face, and ensure that permanent teeth can develop without being affected by infection.

Any liquid containing carbohydrates, when left on the teeth for a long time, can cause bottle caries. These liquids can be milk, fruit juice, juice with added water, sugar water, or any sugary drink. Only the presence of water in the mouth for a long time will not cause any harm to your child.

Some advice to protect yourself from bottle caries: Do not let your baby sleep with a bottle filled with a liquid containing carbohydrates. There is no harm in just sleeping with water.

Take your baby away from the bottle at the age of 12-14 months, after consultation with your doctor.

During the day, do not allow your baby to use a bottle filled with a liquid other than water to relax.

Do not immerse your baby's false breast in sugar or sugary liquids.

Do not add sugar to your child's food.

Clean your baby's teeth and gums with a wet cloth or toothbrush after each meal.

When your baby's first tooth comes out, you should visit your dentist as soon as possible.

You should teach your baby to drink with a glass from the age of one.

You should make sure that your baby gets enough fluoride. If there is no fluoride in the drinking water in your city, you can consult your dentist about fluoride supplements.

Permanent teeth

When your child is 6-7 years old, the baby teeth fall out and begin to replace the permanent teeth. This process may also be a little earlier or later. Due to the hereditary characteristics of each child in his own way, this process can vary. The symmetry or ordering of newly erupted teeth is more important than when the teeth erupt. Most often, the first permanent teeth that appear in the mouth are the lower front teeth. However, in some children, the first molars, also called 6-year-old teeth, may also be the first permanent teeth to erupt. When your child reaches the age of 13, most of his permanent teeth will have taken their place in the mouth. Decubitus erupts between the ages of 17 and 21. But for some people, large molars may not have developed at all. Often, even though these teeth are developed, they cannot last because they are not in the right position or there is no space in the mouth, and they remain buried.

Care of permanent teeth

Your child needs your help brushing teeth until he is 6-8 years old. You should help him with this at least twice a day, in the morning and just before bedtime. You should make sure that food residues do not remain on your child's teeth (especially molars). Because there are a lot of indentations and protrusions on the molars where food residues can be stored.

A few recommendations for your child's oral and dental health:

You can use it by applying fluoride toothpaste the size of a pea on a toothbrush with soft, nylon bristles.

You should teach your child how to spit out foams so that he does not swallow toothpaste.

When your child's two teeth come out in the opposite position, you should also start using dental floss. When children reach the age of 9, they can access the ability to use dental floss on their own. With the use of dental floss, we will be protected from decays by reaching the teeth between which the toothbrush cannot reach.

You can discuss with your dentist or paediatrician about whether your child is getting enough fluoride.

The Connection of Your Child's Teeth with Nutrition

It is just as important for your child's dental health as what he eats, when and how often he eats. A balanced diet is important for long-term dental health (properly developing teeth and healthy gums).

Carbohydrate foods that stay in the mouth or on the teeth for a long time cause tooth decays. The bacteria in the mouth form acids by feeding on these carbohydrates. They start the formation of caries by acting on the enamel layer of the tooth with this acid. During the time between meals, saliva serves to decongest the effect of this acid. The habit of eating frequently causes the mouth to remain acidic, making it prone to tooth decay.

Advice on snacking and meal times:

Give your child healthy food, such as fresh fruits, vegetables, or cheese.

Buy foods that do not contain sugar or added sugar.

Serve sugary or starchy foods after meals, not as a snack.

Despite the promise to brush your child's teeth after eating, you should keep them away from sticky foods. Because these foods enter between the teeth and into the decays on the tooth surfaces and are difficult to remove. It may surprise you, but some of these foods are: cream cookies, figs, croquets, oatmeal cookies, peanut cookies, plain buns, potato chips and crackers.

You should recommend snacking less. Frequently eaten food eventually increases the amount of acid in the mouth and stays that way for a long time.

You should make sure that your child brushes his teeth after snacking. If this is not possible, you should rinse your mouth several times with water.

You should direct your child to buy chewing gums containing xylitol or without sugar.

You should not give your child milk, fruit juice or acidic drinks just before bedtime.

Sealant (fissure sealer);

Since the tooth enamel does not fully develop when the teeth first come out, newly formed teeth are usually less resistant to caries and are conducive to caries formation.

The most ideal time for the application of Fissure Coverings is the first months when these teeth last. In addition, the baby teeth, which are your child's first teeth, can also be protected against caries with Fissure Coverings. If the rotten tooth has advanced to the dentin region, which is the lower layer of enamel, PRR (Preventive Resin Restoration), which is a protective restoration (filling) rather than a fissure cover, may be more appropriate for your child's oral dental health. It should be remembered that dental caries progresses very quickly, especially in children, or rather in young teeth that have just erupted. For this reason, it is very important to apply Fissure Sealants without wasting time. Fissure Closure applications are a painless and extremely easy procedure. Children's fear of dentists is a well-known condition for all of us.

Thanks to Fissure Sealing applications, children's fear of dentists can be significantly reduced. With this application, the Pedodontics-Child-Family (Pedodontics Triangle) relationship can also be maximized. Application of Fissure Sealant First of all, the tooth to which the Fissure Sealant will be applied is isolated from saliva with Rubber Dam (Rubber Cover) or cotton swabs. This procedure is very important for the Fissure Cover to hold onto the tooth surface. Then, the surface roughened, which has the consistency of gel, is applied to the tooth and the area to be applied is prepared. The Fissure Sealant with a fluid consistency is applied to the tooth and its hardening is ensured with the help of blue light (Irradiated Filling Device). All these procedures take about 3-5 minutes and your child does not feel any pain during the procedure. After the Fissure Sealant application, your child can eat and drink something immediately if he wants.