Dental Care for Toddler Teeth and Gum
Oral hygiene is not only necessary for grown-ups but also vital for infants as well.
Infant oral hygiene is necessary for ensuring the oral health of a baby. Maintaining oral health helps the baby have healthy gums and healthy baby teeth ( also called milk teeth ). This will also make way for the permanent teeth to come in. Generally, in most cases, the babies don’t start developing the teeth until they are six months old. However, it is still insisted that you consider oral hygiene of baby important as a newborn. Even before the baby starts developing the teeth.
You need to visit the dentist before your baby’s first birthday to ensure good dental health.
In some cases, we see that newborns are not fed with any solid food as the teeth haven’t grown yet. While in the other cases, toddlers are fed with solid baby foods such as Multigrain Kids Cereals, Oats, etc.
But in both cases, you need to give equal importance to the oral care of an infant or toddler because of the following reasons :
- Bacteria works the same way in their mouth as it works in the mouth of an adult person.
2. Toddlers produce less saliva than adults do. This makes it difficult to wash the leftover residue of any solid or liquid food you feed them with. This means that not cleaning their tongue after feeding will build upon their tongue, resulting in the formation of a thin coating. So cleaning the infant’s tongue after feeding them with any solid as well as liquid food is very important.
Steps of Cleaning a Toddler’s mouth, lips and tongue.
Note: Cleanse your hand thoroughly with soap and water before cleaning the toddler’s mouth.
Parents should clean their baby’s mouth twice a day. Cleaning a Toddlers mouth isn’t a tough job for any. You just need to carry out this process with utmost delicacy and patience, and things will seem more manageable. Apart from this, it is a simple process as you will readily have all the necessary supplies at home.
This process requires you to have some warm water and a clean, soft washcloth or soft towel or a piece of gauze.
- You should make the baby lie down gently in your or a caretaker’s lap, and you should hold the baby’s head close to your chest in a way so that you can visualize their mouth.
- Immerse a gauze or towel or cloth-covered finger into the warm water, then gently open your baby’s mouth and rub the baby’s upper and lower gums. Mildly rub your finger over on the inside of their cheeks too.
- Cleaning the baby’s tongue can be a difficult job because they seldom cooperate. In this case, try distracting the baby by involving the infant in any engaging activities or by making use of their favourite toys so that you can smoothly clean the baby’s tongue without any inconvenience caused.
- Gently open your baby’s mouth, and then lightly rub their tongue in a circular motion using the cloth or gauze, and that’s enough.
- At the end, softly wipe the toddler’s lips with a soft washcloth or towel.
- Alternatively, you may use a washcloth/ towel or piece of gauze. You can also use a soft-bristled, infant-sized finger baby brush. They are designed to gently massage and scrub away leftover milk residue from the baby’s tongue and gums. Ideally, you should brush your baby’s tongue at least twice a day which will ensure better hygiene of the infant and develop a habit of brushing the teeth in the infant.
Importance and need for cleaning a toddler’s mouth and lip after feeding?
There are several points to be considered when the question of “Is the Oral Care of a milk feeding baby necessary ?” arises in your mind.
- The buildup of bacteria takes place in both adults and babbies alike. Therefore even babies require oral hygiene
- A baby produces much less saliva than you make. Even if the baby is only fed with milk, the residue will be left behind in the baby’s mouth as a baby doesn’t produce enough saliva to wash away the milk.
- When you don’t clean the mouth of a baby, the problem of mouth irrtation and cavity, etc., can arise.
- Not Cleaning a toddler’s lips after feeding may cause Lips Discoloration and may also lead to dry and chapped lips. So it is a vital step to clean the infant’s lips after feeding.
- In the cases of breastfeeding either you can gently cleanse the toddler’s lips with a soft damp washcloth, or you can also delicately wipe the food off their lips with your finger itself. But, wash your hands thoroughly before touching the baby’s lips every time you feed a baby.
Oral hygiene from the beginning will only pave the way to good oral health. This will not only allow problem-free teeth but will also ensure problem-free gums. They say teeth and jaws shape the way you look so, oral hygiene will only add to your health and your baby’s beauty.