Are there ways to avoid dental problems?
Keeping your teeth and gums healthy requires good nutrition and regular brushing and flossing.
Brush your teeth twice a day, in the morning and before bed, and floss once a day. This removes plaque, which can lead to damaged teeth, gums and surrounding bone.
Use a toothpaste that contains fluoride, which helps prevent tooth decay and cavities. Ask your dentist if you need a mouthwash that contains fluoride or one with ingredients that fight plaque. Look for toothpastes that have been approved by the American Dental Association.
Avoid foods that contain a lot of sugar. Sugar helps plaque grow.
Avoid using tobacco products, which can cause gum disease and oral cancer. Exposure to tobacco smoke (secondhand smoke) also may cause gum disease as well as other health problems.
Practice tongue cleaning. You can use a tongue cleaner or a soft-bristle toothbrush, stroking in a back-to-front direction. Tongue cleaning is particularly important for people who smoke or whose tongues are coated or deeply grooved.
Schedule regular trips to the dentist based on how often you need exams and cleaning.
When should my child start seeing a dentist?
By the time your child is 6 months of age, your doctor should assess the likelihood of your child having future dental problems. If he or she thinks your child will have dental problems, be sure your child sees a dentist before his or her first birthday or 6 months after the first primary teeth appear, whichever comes first. After your first visit, schedule regular visits every 6 months or as your dentist recommends.
Experts recommend that your child’s dental care start at 12 months of age. If your baby has dental problems caused by injury, disease or a developmental problem, see your pediatric dentist right away.
This text was taken from Web MD.