Team AckoFeb 9, 2024
When we speak about upbringing, one of the most important aspects is to maintain the health and hygiene of your kiddo. Health and hygiene include a number of things like Food hygiene, hand hygiene, sleep hygiene, oral hygiene, etc.
Here we are going to discuss more on Oral Hygiene. It is very important to maintain the oral hygiene. Generally, the belief is that if there is a cavity in the baby tooth it is ok as the baby teeth will anyway fall out. But this is wrong notion as the baby teeth are like the spot-holders for the upcoming adult teeth and they need to remain healthy. Unhealthy baby teeth would have a long-term effect as it shakes the root of healthy adult teeth.
The brushing routine starts even before you see her first tooth emerging. Initially, you can take a clean piece of wet cotton cloth and wipe your baby’s gums at least twice a day. It is recommended that you wipe the gums after feeding and before bedtime.
Once you see the first tooth emerging, you can use a soft toothbrush with a small head (one which is specially designed for babies) with grains sized toothpaste to brush her teeth. Slowly as the number of teeth increases, you can increase the amount of toothpaste used.
You would have to brush your kiddo’s teeth till she is old enough to hold the brush may be until the age of 3. Post which, it is recommended that you supervise her brushing routine until the age of 6 at least.
Teaching your toddler or getting your toddler to understand the concept of oral hygiene may be a daunting task for you, but listed here some tips to make your kiddo brush their teeth in a fun way:
You can take her to a shopping mall where all varieties of toothbrushes are available and let your kiddo choose the brush. A Brightly coloured toothbrush with her favourite cartoon character can do the trick. Your kiddo would be more than happy to brush every day. Select a toothpaste flavour which your little one loves. Ensure that the toothpaste is exclusively made for toddlers and with low fluoride content.
This method works almost for any task of ours. You can design a play with the central character of your kiddo being the mom who is instructing her doll to brush the teeth. You can explain the advantages of brushing the teeth to your kiddo’s doll. You can slowly help your little one in brushing the doll’s teeth. I’m sure your toddler will take a cue from this and start brushing her own teeth. You can tell your kid something like “If you do not brush your teeth, how will your doll learn”. Such things will encourage your kiddo who will want to lead by example.
In the early years of your kid’s upbringing, the best way of making her understand various aspects are either through a song, a rhyme or through a story. There are a number of songs/rhymes which speaks about brushing, you can try singing those rhymes during the day and while taking her for brushing. She might enjoy the brushing session along with the song. Similarly, you can try the story method where you speak about the germs in the mouth as the “monsters” attacking her teeth and your kiddo fighting the monsters with her toothbrush. This will help your kiddo in 2 ways, one your child will love the brushing routine and also helps in developing her imagination.
Reward your toddler with simple gifts when she follows the brushing routine correctly. The gifts you give her should be very simple like a handmade card, a sticker of her choice, an extra serving of her favourite pudding or anything which you feel can make your kiddo happy. The point of rewarding your ward should be only to encourage her to continue the good habit. You can also hang on a calendar in her bathroom and stick one smiley sticker on days when your kiddo brushes her teeth without being forced. At the end of the month, you along with your child can count the number of stars and reward her according to that.
Your child would be watching all that you do and would be more than happy to imitate all your actions. So one of the best ways to cultivate this habit at an early age is to lead by example. If you as a routine, brush your teeth at least twice a day, your kiddo will follow suit. Make it a family routine just like having dinner together, praying together or spending the weekends together. Ensure that you use the right technique to brush your teeth and reach all the corners so that your kiddo learns the right technique.
Visiting a dentist is also a good idea to help your child understand the best ways to maintain good oral hygiene. There are a number of dental clinics which are specially designed for the kids. Take your child to one such clinic and you can request the dentist to give a demonstration of maintaining good hygiene.
Maintaining Oral hygiene just does not include brushing the teeth, you also need to avoid sugary foods which may damage the enamel and promote the growth of bacteria. As a whole, your kid needs to be educated that the oral hygiene has to be maintained for the teeth to last longer.
Disclaimer: This content is for informational purposes only, based on industry experience and secondary sources. It is not a substitute for professional advice. Please consult a qualified expert for health or insurance-related decisions. Content is subject to change, refer to current policy wordings for specific ACKO details.
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