Tooth decay is the number one chronic childhood disease and affects more than a third of toddlers in the US. The relationship between sugar and cavities in your kids’ diets is well established. Bacteria that sit on teeth consume sugar, creating acid as a byproduct. While sugar starts the process, it is the acid that causes cavities.
One particular strain of bacteria called Streptococcus mutans is to blame for most tooth decay. But recently a study was published that shows a type of yeast called Candida albicans may also be responsible for the prevalence of childhood caries. The authors of the study are hopeful that these findings will lead to improved methods for addressing the action of Candida albicans, but it may be a while before it is available to our patients.
However, at Oak Family Dental, we offer plenty of helpful information and tips for keeping your child’s teeth healthy until more is known about it in the meantime. Here are three to get you started:
Maintain Early Childhood Appointments
Your child’s first dental visit should take place as soon as the first baby teeth start to emerge, but no later than age one. Even though these teeth will be lost, there’s still a lot we can do to protect and keep them healthy until they are ready to come out naturally.
Ensure That Kids Follow a Healthy Diet
Avoid sweetened drinks and treats and instead opt for healthy, nutritious foods like lots of fruits and vegetables. Getting your child used to a healthy diet now ensures that they enjoy good oral health long into adulthood.
Monitor Your Child’s Brushing
As soon as baby teeth erupt, you can start brushing using a child’s toothbrush and a tiny smear of fluoride toothpaste to brush their teeth twice a day.
Please Call Us for More Information
If you have any questions or need guidance in managing your child’s oral health care, please don’t hesitate to call your children's dentist in Metairie.