Let's talk about the health and necessity of baby teeth in children today. First, let's consider why the baby tooth is important, why it should be treated, and the parts aimed at protecting the baby tooth.
Why Are Baby Teeth Important?
The milk tooth sequence and the subsequent mixed tooth sequence develop during the period when the child's growth is most active. The first milk tooth begins to come out in 6-8 months. Different groups of baby teeth fall from time to time and leave their place in permanent teeth. This condition lasts until about 12 years of age. 20 baby teeth help digestion through biting, chewing and crushing processes during childhood, and also affect the development of the face and jaw. They act as placeholders by guiding permanent teeth and prepare a healthy foundation for permanent teeth. Early loss of any baby tooth causes neighboring teeth to slide into this space. In this way, a displaced tooth prevents the permanent tooth from being ready to drive or leads to perplexity in the mouth. In addition, early milk tooth losses can affect jaw development, leading to aesthetic and speech disorders. Given all these reasons, our main goal in childhood is to keep our baby teeth in the mouth in a healthy way and continue to use them as placeholders in the mouth until the necessary procedures are applied to the teeth that need treatment and it is time to fall.
Oral Hygiene In Children And Applications For Protecting Baby Teeth
Oral hygiene in children should begin to be provided with the appearance of the first milk tooth in the mouth (about 6-8 months). Especially young children may have difficulty maintaining oral and dental hygiene. In this case, the first task is the parents. The parent should be attentive and meticulous both in ensuring oral hygiene and in teaching this habit to the child. So what should parents do? After each feeding, the teeth are wiped with a clean gauze or gauze. From the age of 1-1,5, you can clean your teeth with a soft toothbrush. In order to be easy to use, these brushes can be silicone brushes that are used by attaching to the finger, which we call finger brushes in the first stages. As the child develops hand manipulation in the future, it is necessary to try to ensure the habit of brushing with small cap, rounded bristles suitable for his mouth.
In addition to gaining the habit of brushing, we doctors also have protective applications for baby teeth. If we talk about it a little bit:
- Fissure sealant (fissure Sealent): There are indentations and protrusions called pit and fissure on the chewing surfaces of molars. Fissure sealants are white-colored fillers that fill these pits to protect teeth from decay. There is usually no need to wear teeth when applying. It is a painless and anesthesia-free treatment. Fissure coverers permanent teeth of newly rubbed children, usually 1. and 2. it is applied to large molars.
- Application of fluoride: The presence of fluoride in the environment strengthens the enamel layer of the tooth while the teeth are mineralized. The tooth becomes resistant to caries. Daily fluoride toothpaste we can strengthen the enamel with local applications such as mouthwash or fluoride gels applied by the dentist.
- Local fluorine application: Fluorine is filled with a solution or gel in a special mold by the dentist and applied to the mouth for a few minutes. It is recommended that the child spit for half an hour after the procedure and not consume milk and dairy products for 24 hours.
- Placeholder application: In cases where the baby tooth is lost prematurely, it may be necessary to make a temporary placeholder until the permanent tooth arrives. If a placeholder is not made, although it is necessary, the teeth on both sides tip over into this space. The tooth in the opposite jaw elongates. If there is no space required for a permanent tooth, the tooth may remain buried.
Bad Habits In Children
Children have some bad habits that affect skeletal and dental development as well as oral hygiene. Let's talk about them and their blocking.
- Finger suction: The suction function is very strong in newborn babies. The habit of sucking fingers should usually disappear at the end of 2 years of age. But despite this, if the habit of sucking fingers or pacifiers still persists, it negatively affects dental health by applying pressure on developing novices and bones. If the child does not give up these habits until the age of 4-5, the mother and father should intervene in this issue.
- Nail eating: Children can start eating nails from the age of 2. This habit negatively affects dental health. Side rotations of the teeth in the front of the mouth can cause abrasions in the biting direction of the teeth.
- Teeth grinding: Children may have a tendency to grind their teeth during sleep and during the day (bruxism). Although the exact causes of common teeth grinding in children are not known, it is believed that it develops as a result of the child trying to contact their baby teeth. As a result of tooth grinding, slight abrasions are observed on milk canine teeth and incisors. If tooth grinding is too advanced, pain may occur in the facial muscles, head, neck, ear and jaw joints.
- Bottle caries: Sometimes in infants, Brown and small spots can be seen on the teeth, especially in the anterior area of the upper jaw, with the continuation of the milk teeth. In fact, these spots are caries, and due to these caries, the teeth break. In this way, common bruises are given honey, sugar or biscuit milk with a bottle and the bottle remains in the baby's mouth throughout the night. Bottle caries is a type of caries that progresses very quickly, and if it is not intervened, it can also include the lower incisors. In order to protect against bottle decay, at night, it is necessary not to put babies to sleep with a bottle in their mouth, not to add sweetener foods to the milk. After the first teeth start to rub, you should wipe the teeth with a wet cheesecloth after morning and night feeding. If bottle caries are not treated, pain and infection are seen. Infected or aching teeth cause the baby to become restless and lose nutrition. It also affects the permanent teeth that will come from below, causing their shape to deteriorate. If these teeth are forced to be pulled, speech problems may occur in the child.
Note to Post
How should oral and dental cleaning be done in children?
- A clean gauze or gauze can be used to clean the teeth with the exit of the first baby tooth.
- After feeding the baby should be put to bed by drinking water
- He should not be put to sleep with a bottle or breast
- Sweets such as honey, jam should not be placed in the milk, and either The Pacifier should not be dipped in such sugary foods
- In the first days, the child should be given the habit of brushing using finger brushes
- He should be scrubbed for at least two minutes, so we can accompany him with a two-minute hourglass to motivate the child.