In the fourth of five blogs, Steve Lomas (Practice Partner at Old Surgery Dental Practice) shares an article he recently wrote for his doctor so he could advise his patients on how to look after their children’s teeth. Part 4 deals with prevention of tooth decay, offering advice for parents to keep their children smiling!
- Start taking your child for regular examinations by the age of two and a half
- The first adult molar teeth come into the mouth around the age of six. Once these are fully through your dentist may well place a special plastic fissure sealant onto the surface of these teeth to stop food debris getting stuck in the teeth and help prevent decay
- Disclosing tablets. Around seven to eight years old your child will want to take control of their own brushing. Until then do it for them or finish it off. This is where the disclosing tablets come in. You can use these to help build a solid tooth brushing technique so you can be confident they can look after their teeth. Start by allowing your child to chew on one of these tablets before brushing. Plaque on the teeth will be stained red or blue. Then they can brush, rinse out and see if stain is left, and which areas of the mouth they are missing. Then go back in and clean what has been missed. Hopefully after a couple of weeks all the stain will be removed first time every time. Then swap to using after brushing, so areas being missed will be highlighted and technique can be refined. Once you are happy, then the tablets can just be used periodically to check things haven’t slipped, or as a policing tool when your teenager tries to persuade you that 10 seconds really was two minutes!
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