To ensure your children’s teeth remain healthy just follow these simple instructions:
- Try to introduce drinking from a cup from around six months of age, and from one year feeding from a bottle should be discouraged. Breastfeeding is best for a baby; but once the baby has teeth, prolonged contact with formula feeds or milk can cause tooth decay, especially if this is on demand for long periods throughout the night well beyond the age of 6 months.
- Use water in a bottle as a night-time drink, not dilute fruit juice or milk, or any sugar-containing drinks.
- Try not to get your child used to sweet tastes.
- As soon as your child’s first tooth is visible brush your child’s teeth with a pea-sized blob of tooth paste containing 1,000 ppm of fluoride, twice daily.
- From the age of 3, an adult toothpaste should be used containing 1350 to 1500 ppm of fluoride.
- During the day, fill your child’s bottle only with milk or water.
- Do not fill your child’s bottle with fruit juice or squash as this can cause holes in the teeth.
- Teach your child to drink from a cup rather than from a bottle as soon as possible.
- When your child starts eating, keep sugary foods and drinks to mealtimes (no sugar between meals).
- Only allow your child to eat “Safe Snacks” in-between meals (See safe snack suggestions).
- Take your child to the dentist for regular check ups from 2 years of age, if not before.