6 years old and Up!
Most children begin to lose their baby teeth as early as 5 years of age and continue to lose a total of 20 baby teeth by the time they are 12. At around the age of 6, not only do they lose baby teeth in the front but they also gain PERMANENT molars in the back. This is very important because most children don't reach those teeth when brushing and cavities can easily form. You MUST be involved in making sure that they keep those teeth clean. By the age of 12, most children no longer have baby teeth, and another set of molars begin to come in. The last set of molars (Wisdom teeth), come in between the ages of 18 and 21.
Brushing is recommended at least twice a day (every morning and every night) to remove everything your child ate and drank throughout the day. The key to preventing cavities is to make sure that no sugar remains in the mouth for more than 24 hours at a time. Sugar that remains on the teeth will be used by our natural oral bacteria and will be converted to acid. Acid weakens the enamel and causes cavities.
We highly recommend that children start flossing as soon as their teeth are contacting each other. Cavities between teeth are common in children who don't floss. They can be detected with x-rays and sometimes are visible in between front teeth. There are new flossers in the market that are kid friendly and make this process easier. The earlier your child starts flossing, the better!
Adding a fluoride rinse to your child's daily oral health regimen will greatly reduce their chances of getting cavities. Our top 2 fluoride rinse recommendations are the ACT Fluoride rinse and the Listerine Smart rinse. They both help strengthen teeth and prevent cavities. We recommend that your child use the fluoride rinse at night after they brush their teeth, right before they go to bed. If rinsing in the morning, they should not have anything to eat or drink for 30 minutes after rinsing.
Healthy foods along with fruits and vegetables will not only improve the oral health of your children but their overall health. Foods that are high in sugars and carbohydrates not only increase the chances of cavities but also of obesity, diabetes, and heart disease. Studies have shown that the eating habits that children pick up early on in life will help them maintain a healthy lifestyle when they become adults.
When children drink beverages that contain sugar (or where sugar is added) such as juice, flavored milk, soda, sports drinks, coffee and tea; multiple times a day, it increases their chances of getting cavities. We highly recommend that they drink lots of water throughout the day; that they drink sugary drinks with meals and not throughout the entire day; and that they brush their teeth thoroughly to make sure that none of the sugar in the drinks remains in their teeth.