- When will the first teeth come?
The first teeth appear when the child is between six and eight months old. Infants explore the world through their mouth and tongue. This can be wonderfully used for getting used to the toothbrush, because as soon as the first teeth come, they must be brushed with a soft child toothbrush and a pea-sized amount of a fluoridated children’s toothpaste.
As the child grows older, you can brush your teeth together and show them the playful use of the toothbrush. Of course, your child would also like to brush their teeth themselves soon.
- How is teething?
Teething usually progresses in children without major problems. The “calendar” of teething is approximately as follows: Between the 6th and 12th month the 8 incisors appear, between the 12th and 18th months the first 4 molars, between the 18th and 24th month the 4 canines and between the 24th and 30th month the last 4 molars.
The deciduous dentition counts 20 teeth, the permanent dentition 32 teeth. The change of teeth takes about 12 years. Teething is often painful. Your child may be in a bad mood or even have a fever. That is normal. Before the breakthrough, the tooth causes a small swelling on the gums. You can help your child to relieve the pain: for a local treatment on the gums, for example, small massages with a corresponding balm are suitable.
- Why are healthy milk teeth important?
Healthy milk teeth are important for the chewing and overall health and development of the child. Therefore, the prevention of caries in deciduous teeth is of great importance. Holes – caries – are the result of frequent consumption of sugary drinks and food as well as inadequate dental care.
The bacteria in the dental plaque, the plaque, process the sugar within a few minutes into acids that can attack and destroy the tooth. Therefore, the teeth should be cleaned after each meal. Important: snacks should not contain sugar – neither in solid nor in liquid form!
- Which teeth cleaning technique does one use to clean baby teeth?
The deciduous teeth are brushed with fluoride-containing toothpaste with vertical movements – i.e. up and down – over the gums. The chewing surfaces are cleaned with small, horizontal movements. At the end, if possible, do not rinse with water, spit out enough. Thus, the valuable fluoride can protect the teeth longer. When the children are older, they learn how to brush their teeth properly in kindergartens and schools.
The method was developed by the dental centers of the Swiss universities and the Swiss dental hygiene schools. This method is essentially based on two elements: a uniformly defined sequence of the tooth surfaces to be cleaned and the correct technique: vertical movements of the toothbrush for cleaning the outer and inner surfaces, horizontal cleaning of the chewing surfaces.
- What does the dental examination involve?
In the dental office, the dentist examines teeth and gums. The dentist shows the children and adolescents how to prevent tooth decay. This also includes measures for fluoridation, the removal of tartar and the so-called Fissurensiegelung (closure of the dimples of healthy molars with plastic). In kindergartens and schools, the prophylaxis instruction takes place in groups. The group prophylaxis includes tooth brushing exercises, nutritional information and brushing with fluoride gel.
- What are teeth-friendly products?
Only one factor is crucial for dental health: the frequency of consumption of sugary foods and beverages. It does not matter whether it is sucrose (ordinary granulated sugar), glucose (glucose), fructose (fruit sugar), maltose (malt sugar), lactose (milk sugar) or invert sugar. Therefore, the most important recommendation for healthy teeth is to largely refrain from sugar during snacks. If you do not want to do without sweets in between, you should only consume tooth-friendly products.
Sweets called “tooth-friendly” are sweetened with sugar substitutes and sweeteners. These substances cannot be fermented by the bacteria of the plaque to acid. The products so designated go through a specified test procedure and are safe for the teeth.
- Which toothbrush does my child need?
The first toothbrush should be a manual toothbrush. Toddlers can play and get used to it before the parents brush their teeth. In kindergartens and schools, only the use of manual toothbrushes will be practiced in the future.
The handling of electric toothbrushes (rotating toothbrushes or sonic toothbrushes) must be specially trained. In recent years, it has been found that toothbrushes with soft plastic bristles are effective in plaque removal as well as being gentle on the gums and the cervixes. When choosing the toothbrush, you should also pay attention to the shape of the head. The rule is: rather small than big! Small brushes with rounded shapes also allow the cleaning of otherwise difficult to access tooth surfaces.
- What role do fluorides play in dental health?
Fluorides, that is, salts of the element fluorine, occur everywhere in nature. They are naturally found in the soil, in the water and in the air. Traces of it are present in virtually all foods of vegetarian and animal origin.
For the human organism, fluorine is an indispensable trace element that makes bone formation possible. Fluorides play an important role in caries prevention. Their widespread use is the main reason for the caries decline that has been observed worldwide in many industrialized countries during the last decades.
Fluorides exert their caries-inhibiting action directly on the tooth surface by inhibiting the acid production of plaque bacteria and thus slowing down decalcification of the enamel. They increase the resistance of the enamel to acids and promote the re-deposition of minerals from the oral fluid in already decalcified enamel, so that an incipient caries can be stopped. The use of fluoride-containing toothpastes is therefore regarded worldwide as the most important measure for caries prevention.
- What to do if my child breaks off a tooth?
In dental accidents, it is important to respond quickly and correctly. The information sheet “Dental Accidents” provides useful information in emergencies (see information at the bottom of the text). With a broken tooth you have to go to the dentist immediately. The more discontinued, the more urgent the treatment (within hours!).
Take large chipped pieces – these may be glued on again. When teeth are knocked out: If possible, replace immediately. Do not touch the tooth at the root and do not mechanically clean or disinfect! In case of visible contamination, rinse briefly under running water. If re-insertion is not possible: keep the tooth in milk, saline solution or plastic bag containing saliva when transporting.
- At what age is a clip useful?
It is quite common for teeth to interfere with each other’s growth. If you observe malposition’s in your child, you should contact your dentist. In rare cases malocclusion is treated at the age of three to six years. Irregularities in the change of teeth or in the tooth position should be shown to the dentist no later than ten years.
Orthodontic treatment is usually performed after the onset of puberty, as growth and development from age eleven allow optimal intervention.