It's a magical moment when your baby smiles at you, and as day goes by, it is even more rewarding as your toddler can smiles with teeth. The path to a good oral health shall start with the ability to differentiate the facts from misconceptions.
Myth 1: Fluoridated toothpaste is harming your little one.
It was once a misconception that fluoride toothpaste is harmful to children, especially kids who are below two as they are usually incapable of rinsing and spitting. As a result, parents are more fond of non-fluoride toothpaste. However, fluoride is essential for both baby and adult teeth. It acts as a protecting shield form bacteria attack and also it will constantly remineralise the outer layer of our teeth. A long term effect of lacking fluoride will cause teeth to be more fragile and also increasing the caries rate.
Side note : Water supply in a lot of counties has added with a minimal amount of fluoride. So a certain amount is still consumed by your baby subconsciously. Therefore do consider to switch to fluoridated toothpaste regardless of your kid’s age. All you need to do is just control the amount of toothpaste, use a rice size amount of toothpaste for kids below 2, while a pea size is suitable for children 3-6.
Myth 2: Cavities in baby teeth do not matter
This is based on the idea that since these teeth will eventually fall out, what happens to them beforehand doesn’t matter. Unfortunately, cavities can actually cause a handful of problems. Cavities will gradually cause pain and even affect their eating or sleep. If untreated or treatment was given too late, the bacteria might spread to the nerve inside the root which a proper treatment will be more complicated and need much more cooperation from the child. So it is always better to focus on prevention rather than fixing them later.
Myth 3: It's fine to bottle feed till asleep
No doubt bottle feed to sleep is the most suiting way to put kids in bed. However, this is a significant contributing factor to cavities. Some parents do claim that their kids had brush before bed, but if milk is given after brushing, that's actually in vain. The remnant from the pooling milk on the teeth will turn to acid and will cause cavities. Furthermore, when we sleep, our saliva flow reduces, so the remnant left from the milk have no chance to be flushed away by saliva.
Myth 4: Baby teeth fall out sooner or later
We might naturally to expect baby teeth will eventually fall out anyway. But it’s not rare to see cases where some children have congenital missing of permanent teeth. This condition means that for some reasons , the child has some missing permanent teeth.Since there is no successor, the baby teeth usually will not resorb and fall out. They will just stay in the mouth and act as a replacement for the permanent teeth. Therefore it is important to keep all baby teeth healthy and free form cavities.
Myth 5: Kids don’t need to see a dentist until there is a problem
Unfortunately, many parents usually don’t take their child to the dentist until there is a problem. So by the time a kid is brought in, often there is a lot to be done. As a result of insufficient time for the kids to get used to the dental setting and also the lengthy procedures, it usually will lead to a very disheartening experience for every party.
It is suggested that parents bring their children for a first dental visit as early as possible even though everything seems fine. It is important to acclimatise the child towards a dental setting and establish a trusting relationship with the dentist. During the first visit, the focus of a dentist should be more on introducing the dental setting and let a child enjoys the dental visit. If any further treatment is needed, it is always better to schedule another separate appointment.