It is essential to dedicate oneself to oral hygiene from the first days of life.
Starting so early has the purpose of lowering the bacterial load to create an optimal environment for the birth of milk teeth, minimizing the risk of caries in future teeth.
The oral cavity should be cleaned with a moistened and properly rolled sterile gauze on the finger to facilitate hygiene.
Gently pass over the gums without rubbing to remove all milk residues.
It is also possible to use microfiber gloves, created specifically for these daily actions. Ideally, the baby’s mouth should be cleaned after each feed.
Between the fourth and eighth months, the first tooth usually appears: most often it is the lower central incisor.
When the first deciduous tooth erupts, brushing is recommended.
The ideal toothbrush features a small head, soft bristles and a very large handle that allows parents and children to hold the toothbrush together.
It may also be helpful to insert a safety ring in the first two years of life to help maintain a safe distance from the back of the baby’s mouth.
In the first phase of eruption it is also possible to use the silicone thimble.
Children and toothpaste: which and how much?
From 0 months to 6 years it is essential to use a toothpaste for children as the latter differs from adult toothpaste for the amount of fluoride it contains.
The latter contains 1450 parts per million (ppm) of fluoride, while baby toothpaste contains 1000 parts per million (ppm.)
Children at this stage are likely to ingest toothpaste more easily due to the good taste, for this reason it is essential to limit the amount of toothpaste equal to one lentil, as an incorrect intake of fluoride can cause acute and chronic toxicity.
Acute fluoride poisoning causes symptoms ranging from excessive salivation, nausea, abdominal pain, vomiting and diarrhea to neuromuscular symptoms.
While a chronic systemic intake of excessive amounts of fluoride during amelogenesis can cause dental fluorosis.
Dental fluorosis occurs as an alteration of the enamel, it can vary from small white-creamy spots to diffuse brown spots, with a corroded appearance.
Fluoride also plays an important role in the prevention of dental caries, thus making it valuable for the primary and secondary prevention of caries.
Fluoride can be administered systemically (in a pre-eruptive phase) and topically (in a posteructive phase).
It has currently been shown that the topical route is more efficient than the systemic route , the use of fluorinated toothpaste is the most recommended method of fluoroprophylaxis to date.
How many times a day should we have children brush their teeth?
It is advisable to brush your teeth twice a day, especially in the evening before going to sleep as salivary flow decreases during the night.
When the toothbrush will have fan-shaped bristles it is advisable to change it, usually children tend to bite it, so the change will take place every 2-3 months.
It is advisable that these oral hygiene procedures are lived in serenity and under the supervision of an adult.
The child will be able to begin to be autonomous in brushing when he is able to tie his shoes on his own (About eight years old).