Say Cheese! Dental Tips for Children’s Smiles

Apr 21, 2023


Nothing is sweeter than a child’s smile. But giving your child sweets like candy and soda isn’t recommended if you want to keep their teeth healthy long-term.

Thankfully, it’s easy to help your child’s smile stay bright from their first tooth to the first visit from the tooth fairy and beyond. Here are some recommendations from Bijal Mehta, DDS, an Adventist Health dentist.

Care for your baby’s first teeth

When should you start cleaning your little one’s teeth? Believe it or not, as soon as they get their first tooth! “You can keep it simple, just using water and your finger as a brush,” Dr. Mehta says.

Protect your baby’s teeth

Keep your baby’s teeth strong for years to come by following these simple tips:

  • Don’t let baby sleep with a bottle in their mouth
  • Wash baby’s mouth out with water after drinking a bottle and before going to sleep
  • Never put juice in your baby’s bottle

Help your child keep a healthy smile as they grow

Together, you and your child can make sure to have healthy smiles. Follow these steps with them to take great care of teeth and mouths as a family.

  • Brush your teeth twice a day with fluoride toothpaste
  • Clean between your teeth daily (flossing is an easy way!)
  • Help your children brush their teeth until their pros – usually around age 10

“Making dental care part of your daily routine will help your child create lifelong healthy habits,” encourages Dr. Mehta.

Choose foods and drinks that support bright smiles

A healthy mouth starts with what you put inside of it! Help your children (and yourself) stay cavity-free by limiting sugary foods and drinks and instead, focus on eating healthy foods such as fruits and vegetables. “Your teeth and gums will thank you, and you’ll be healthier overall too,” explains Dr. Mehta.

Visit your child’s dentist every 6 months

We dentists love seeing your kids and helping them stay healthy!” Dr. Mehta says. “We encourage you to take your children to the dentist upon the first tooth eruption and to continue visiting the dentist every six months.”

Find a dentist near you to support dental health for every member of your family.