Health

Caring for your child’s teeth

Acidic saliva

By gradually introducing foods such as fresh fruits and vegetables into your child’s diet, you will help their saliva regain a better balance in acidity. These foods need to be heavily chewed for a long time, which stimulates the flow of saliva and therefore, decreases the acidity and brings back the calcium that protects their teeth against cavities.

Teeth care for children

Early loss of baby teeth can affect language, chewing ability, and tongue use. If the child loses a tooth due to decay, the permanent tooth may burst at an angle, causing an overlap of adult teeth.

Between the ages of 4 and 7, encourage your child to brush their teeth alone by showing them the correct movements: back and forth from top to bottom. Supervise them until the age of 10 or when they get the hang of it! Speaking of maintenance ... it may sound funny, but the most difficult part when teaching a child to brush their teeth is not the exercise itself ... It's explaining how to spit out the toothpaste that tastes like bubble gum rather than swallowing it! Not always obvious! However, it is very important to make them spit and rinse their mouth because if the child ingests the toothpaste like candy, they will end up with a fluoride overdose problem.

Mollar Sealing

The sealing of permanent molar grooves is an effective preventive measure against cavities. It obstructs the cavities that are numerous on the molars. The sealing is done with a thin layer of liquid resin, a bit like nail polish. The installation of this sealant is not covered by the Quebec health insurance program, but most private insurers reimburse the cost (around $ 50 per tooth).

Fluoride

Fluoride acts in two ways on the teeth: during their formation, it makes the teeth, up to a certain extent, naturally resistant to cavities. When the teeth have pierced the gum, the fluoride that is absorbed is added and reduces the risk of developing cavities by 60 per cent.

Fluoride is therefore important for the protection of teeth. But the child who absorbs too much fluoride will develop dental fluorosis. The main consequence of this is the appearance of brown or white spots on the teeth. In addition, the enamel of the teeth will become rough and therefore difficult to clean. It’s a shame because these children often end up doing cosmetic dentistry during their adolescence or adulthood because these spots can be very apparent, and therefore embarrassing!

Before giving fluoride supplements to your child, it is important to do at least two things: A phone call to find out if your city "fluoridates" tap water and a close-up reading of your toothpaste tubes ... Having a good idea of the amount of fluoride your child absorbs, you will be able to better judge the precautions to take ... And an appointment at the dentist does not hurt either!

Sources: Canadian Dental Association, Canadian Dental Hygienists Association

Image de Sonia Cosentino

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