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Parents & Families

Dental Trauma Instructions: Advice for Parents and Caregivers

Written by: Sam Zwetchkenbaum, Dental Director, and Madeline Weil, Academic Scholar, Rhode Island Department of Health, Oral Health Program.

If you are a parent or caregiver, you know that kids are always on the move. Having an active child means that accidents can happen at any time, including to primary (baby) and permanent (adult) teeth. The International Association of Dental Traumatology reports that most dental injuries occur before age 19.

#Smilestones - An Impact Report

At TeethFirst!, we believe that early dental visits put children on a path to healthy smiles for a lifetime, and that it’s never too soon for dentists and families to team up – making a child’s first teeth a priority from the start. We believe that great healthcare requires a team of people working together to keep our little ones healthy.
 

My Healthy Smile

You and your child have been through it all, and now it’s time to celebrate!

It’s been a long road with plenty of memorable Smilestones along the way. And your child’s teeth are healthier for it! Thanks to you and the support you’ve shown them, they’re ready to take the best care of their teeth. Now and in the future. But that doesn’t mean you can’t be there to remind them and keep their smile as healthy and bright as ever.

Let’s take a look at all that you’ve done, and a few things to expect next:

A Look Back

Choosing Water

What your child decides to drink to keep their smile as healthy as it can be is the next Smilestone on their list!

Everybody enjoys a cold soda or, with the warm summer sun shining overhead, that tall glass of lemonade. Every once in a while, that’s perfect! It’s what your child drinks on a daily basis that plays the most important role. Especially when it comes to their smile.

Here are just a few of the many reasons why water is the best (and healthiest) choice for your child to drink:

Smile Friendly Snacks

Keeping that smile takes work – but there’s no rule that says you can’t have fun, too!

Making sure your child’s teeth are taken care of goes past good brushing. A lot comes down to what they’re eating, too! The key is in variety. There’s no need to stick with a few food groups when there are so many healthy options. Here are a few tips to help make the shift towards your child’s healthy smile:

Brushing Together

Now your child has their first toothbrush, it’s time to make sure they know how to use it! Of course, they’ll have opinions on how they want to brush their teeth. It’s important to help guide them in the right direction, though. Fortunately, this is something the two of you should do together!

Here are a few ways that you both can be proactive together and learn a few good habits along the way – together:

My First Toothbrush

Your little one isn’t so little anymore!

They’re testing boundaries more often. They want to do things for themselves. At 4-5 your child will be able to handle their very own toothbrush without any extra help – but for now, they still need your help picking one out and learning to use it.

My Gap Grin

What defines your child’s smile?

Maybe it’s how wide it spreads, or how it’s held back and shy. Maybe she tilts her head, or scrunches her nose.

When your child loses both front teeth, they’ve reached another defining moment in their little smile – yes, another Smilestone!

Here are a few fast facts about this special smile – and some information you can share with your child:

First Dentist Appointment

Healthy teeth allow your baby to chew food and talk. They also help shape your baby’s face and hold space open for adult teeth to grow in—adult teeth are bigger than baby teeth, so they need lots of space. When you take care of your baby’s teeth by brushing at home and going for checkups at the dentist, dental visits become a way to prevent cavities instead of just treating them when they happen.

Brushing Together

Now your child has their first toothbrush, it’s time to make sure they know how to use it! Of course, they’ll have ideas on how they want to brush their teeth. It’s important to help guide them in the right direction, though. Fortunately, this is something the two of you should do together!

Here are a few ways that you both can be smart about healthy smiles together and learn a few good habits along the way – together:

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TeethFirst! Creating healthy smiles for a lifetime.