4 Reasons why teething jewelry (Tlismi Moti) is a terrible idea for your baby !!

teething jewelry
tlismi moti

Your baby is teething?? Why don’t you get your baby a Tlismi Moti??

A very known and common notion among parents, Tlismi Moti or amber teething necklaces are not something you would want your child to use after reading the following reasons.

When your child is in pain you might think of all the possible reasons you can to just stop the pain, and when the big words like, this is ancient and ancestral, this is something natural, it will boost your child’s immunity, sets in, you might just start using it without thinking twice.

But the best thing to do now a days is, explore about it in detail first, rather that just listening to some neighborhood aunty and doing the same for your child.

The FDA in December 2018, recommended against the use of any kind of teething jewelry for kids, adults, or even people with special needs. They mentioned in their study that they have even received reports of death and serious injuries to infants and children, including strangulation and choking, caused by teething jewelry, such as amber teething necklaces.

What is teething jewelry??

Teething jewelry can be anything from a necklace, anklet or a bracelet which is worn by the baby or the adult, and is claimed to soothe the teething pain. It can be made up of wood, amber marble or silicone.

The most common teething jewelry available and use by parents in India is the Tlismi Moti. The Tlismi Moti is claimed to be used since the ancient times and has a combination of 5 metals in exact proportion. It is believed to be a natural harmonizer of energies around the oral cavity, thus relieving the teething pain.

There are the amber teething necklaces available in the market which is made up of baltic amber, which is obtained from the fossilized tree resins. They are converted into beads and are worn around the child’s neck. It contains some percentage of succinic acid which is thought to relieve teething pain. But there is no scientific evidence claiming the same.

But is that true??

Does the teething jewelry work or is it even safe??

There are so many misconceptions among parents when we talk about teething. Since the teething jewelry has been introduced since the ancient time, it is still thought upon as the best method to relieve the pain. But does it really help? Or does it impose some kind of risk?

Here are few of the reasons you should totally avoid using the teething jewelry for your child.

Strangulation Hazard

Anything worn around the baby’s neck is not safe. The teething necklaces when worn around the neck of the baby can strangulate or suffocate the baby especially when it is a little tight.

If you are using it for your child, make sure to use it only under supervision. Remove it as soon as the baby is alone, even if for a very short period of time. Make sure to remove it during the sleeping time, whether it is in the day or night.

Choking Hazard

If you are using the jewelry as a bracelet or an anklet, the child can very easily put it in the mouth and the beads might come loose and choke the baby.

So, it is again a big NO.

Only use the jewelry under adult supervision,if you want to.

Source of Harmful Bacteria

The teething jewelry is in the constant contact with the skin, and the skin naturally has bacteria which can get colonized on the teething jewelry thus causing infection to the child.

A research done at a French hospital, showed that there was colonization of bacteria on all the examined necklaces which pose a health hazard to the child, and thus should be avoided.

Injury to the Gums

The teething jewelry can cause injury to the gums when the child tries to put it in the mouth. If any corner is sharp, it might pierce the gums causing bleeding, pain and discomfort to the child. The child might even get intraoral infections.

What is the alternative to Teething Jewelry?

There are a lot of other things you can do to soothe the teething pain your bundle of joy is going through.

  1. 1. Use teethers. For the best teethers available, you can visit our link.
  2. 2. Use a wash cloth
  3. 3. A gentle massage on the gums
  4. 4. Fruit nibblers
  5. 5. Milk popsicles
  6. 6. Become your baby’s chew toy
  7. 7. Medication

Good Read: 9 home remedies to soothe teething pain

So, to conclude this, teething jewelry has scientifically less benefits and more troubles and the best thing to do when your baby is teething is to use the other methods to relieve the teething pain in kids.

Disclaimer

This blog provides general information and discussion about dentistry and other health related topics. The opinions and content expressed on this blog are for general conversational purposes only and should not be interpreted as dental or medical advice pertaining to any particular individual. If the reader or any other person has a dental or medical concern, he or she should consult with an appropriately-licensed dentist, physician or other health care provider.

10 Best Teethers Available In India!!

As your little bundle of joy is finally going to get those pretty pearls in that tiny little mouth, lets explore some best teethers available in India so that he or she can be a little more comfortable while achieving this milestone.

You can find the home remedies for your teething baby in our previous article.

There are a number of teethers available in the market, and reading both our articles you can decide which is the best teether for your baby.

Sophie La Girafe Gift Set

Though one of the most expensive teethers, this is a big hit among the kids. The package can be good to gift any kid from 0-2 years among family or friends. The child gets more familiar with the animal figure. Sophie la Girafe is a must buy.

Features:

  1. 100 % Natural Rubber
  2. BPA free
  3. Should not be sterilized or kept in the dish washer but should only be washed with a light soap under water
  4. Easy to hold in the little hand
  5. Available in white, brown and beige color

Chic Buddy teether

Chic buddy teether is a one piece solid teether is available in 2 vibrant colors, yellow and red, and you can pick your child’s favorite. It is neither too hard nor too soft and helps in relieving your child’s irritation in the gums.

Features:

  1. Silicone based teether
  2. BPA Free
  3. Shape: Ring form and finger shaped,
  4. Easy to hold, grip and chew
  5. Available in yellow and red color

Motherly Butterfly Baby Teether Tube Toy

This butterfly shaped motherly teether toy is a teether as well as a toy you can gift your kid. They would surely love it due to the flexibility, the subtle colors.

Features:

  1. Material used is Polycarbonate (PU) & Thermoplastic Polyurethane (TPU)
  2. Flexible
  3. BPA and Latex free
  4. Helps in sensory development and hand eye co-ordination due to the unique design
  5. Has a rattle too, which keeps the kid engaged
  6. Also has a 360O rotation design

Syga Baby Banana Training Toothbrush and Teether

This teether cum toothbrush is one of the favorites among kids. The banana shaped teether comes in yellow color which is among the first colors the child learns. It is one of the best teethers available.

Features:

  1. Silicone based
  2. BPA, latex and phthalate free
  3. Peeled banana shaped, so easy to hold
  4. Has bristles which also cleans baby’s erupted teeth and gums
  5. Has massage point on the opposite end which helps in relieving the irritation in the gums

R for Rabbit Giraffe Baby Teether Toy

This R for Rabbit giraffe baby teether is ring shaped available in different colors and you can choose your child’s favorite.

Features:

  1. 100% hygienic food-grade Silicone based teether
  2. BPA free
  3. Ring shaped teether for easy grip for the little one
  4. Multiple textured surfaces to chew on
  5. Very flexible
  6. High temperature resistant

Mombella Dancing Elephant Teether

My daughter’s favorite teether, mombella dancing elephant is one of the best teethers you can choose for your child. the great design, single piece product with so many surfaces to chew on.

Features:

  1. Silicone based
  2. BPA free
  3. Comes in 2 colors yellow and blue
  4. Easy to hold
  5. Has an anti-choking shield
  6. High temperature resistant so can be steam sterilized
  7. Non choking design

Infantso Baby Teether

This Infantso baby teethers comes in two bright colors for you to choose from.

Features:

  1. Silicone based teether
  2. BPA, latex or phthalate free
  3. A ring shaped teether for easy and firm grip
  4. Has different sensory textures
  5. Has soft bumps to chew on

Ariro Neem Wooden Tethers Shaped Like Treats

If you are looking for a wooden teether for your child, here is where you need to click, Ariro neem wooden teether.

Features:

  1. Wooden teether
  2. Hard
  3. Made from the need tree
  4. Neem wood’s enzymes, preserved in the trunk, releases as the child gnaws into it helping boost immunity and aid digestion
  5. Available in different shapes and sizes

LuvLap Baby Silicone Stick Teether for Molar Teeth & Gums

If your previous teether is not reaching the molar area for your child, this Luvlap teether is the teether you need to buy. This can be the best teether for your child.

Features:

  1. Silicone based teether
  2. BPA free
  3. Transparent
  4. FDA approved
  5. Rounded bottom and curved surface
  6. Dishwasher safe
  7. Multiple sensory textures with ridges and grooves
  8. Soft and flexible
  9. Has an anti-choking shield

Kidzvilla Teething & Massaging Toy Teether

The teether comes in the shapes of fun fruits and has vibrant colors.

Features:

  1. Silicone based
  2. BPA free
  3. FDA approved
  4. Has multiple sensory textures with ridges and grooves
  5. Has soft bumps and nubs
  6. Heat resistant, so can be steam sterilized

LuvLap Sunshine Silicone Teether

This highly recommended teether from Luvlap can keep your child comfortable during the tough time of teething.

Features:

  1. Silicone based teether
  2. BPA free
  3. Available in different colors
  4. Soft and flexible
  5. Multiple sensory textures with ridges and grooves
  6. Easy to grasp and chew

The best gift you can give your child during the teething phase is the best teether. There are various types of teethers available in the market as well as online. Here in this article we have provided you with the best teethers available in India. To know how to choose the best teether for your child you can read our previous article here.

This article contains affiliate links which means I might receive a commission if you purchase an item using these links, but this does not mean you will have to pay something extra for these.

9 Home Remedies to Soothe Teething Pain!

Teething pain relief is something that becomes the most important thing for parents once the tiny one starts getting the teeth.

Teething is a very important milestone our kids achieve. And as parents it is difficult for us to see our kids in teething pain.

If your baby had no trouble at all while teething, you are one lucky parent (Yay ! I am one of them).

It is not easy to calm a teething baby who has so much of irritation in the gums and just can not tell you what is wrong. So, let us first discuss a little bit about the how, what, when and why of teething and then we will move on to the home remedies to soothe the teething pain.

When does teething start??

Teething can start any time between the age of 3 months to 18 months.

Some kids are even born with teeth, and these teeth are called the natal teeth. These are mainly the front lower 2 teeth. Some kids get these front lower teeth within the first month of life. These are then know as the neonatal teeth. Usually these are small and are mobile due to underdeveloped roots. For this you need to visit a dentist (pediatric dentist) and if your dentist suggests you can get them removed.

The maximum you can wait for the first tooth to erupt in your baby’s mouth is till the age of 18 months.

All the 20 milk teeth will erupt by the age of 3 years.

What are the signs that your baby is teething??

There sometimes might be a lot of confusion that why the baby is so cranky. Here are the symptoms you need to look for to know for sure that your baby is teething:

1. Irritability: Your child might be irritable, and might be too clingy. You might find him or her crying uncontrollably. This can be a sign of teething as the child might have a lot of irritation in the gums.

2. Gnawing or wanting to chew on everything: Normally kids put everything in their mouth to explore the world around them. But while teething this becomes excessive and then they feel like chewing on everything they get, especially the hard stuff. Just make sure whatever they put in the mouth is always clean.

3. Excessive Drooling: Excessive drooling is one of the symptoms of teething. Just make sure to keep the baby’s face dry by wiping immediately, and yes, you might need some extra bibs!

4. Reduced Appetite: Your child might suddenly start eating less. So, do not force feed your baby. Just keep offering food and let the child decide the quantity. The breastfeeding child might get too clingy and ask for feed more frequently. Here the mom will have to be a little more patient.

5. Swollen Gums: You might see your child’s gums are a little bit red and swollen. Most children get the lower front teeth first, so this is the region of gums mostly seen swollen and red.

What are the home remedies for soothing the teething gums??

Home remedies for teething pain in babies is what most parents are looking for. Yes, it is possible to get at home remedies for the teething pain. Here is what you need to do at home, to give your child teething pain relief and a good night sleep.

1. Teethers:

Teethers are the best friend for your baby to get teething pain relief. There are various type of teethers available in the market, and you will have to choose the best for your child. You can check our articles for the 10 best teethers available in India.

It is better to avoid the gel filled or water filled teethers. If the erupting tooth is sharp it can puncture the teether and there might be a chance that your child will swallow the liquid or the gel.

There are a number of teethers available in the market to help in relieving the teething pain and you are the one to decide the best for your child.

What all do you need to keep in the mind before buying a teether?

  • Material: Silicone or wooden teethers. Both silicone and wooden teethers are available in the market and you will have to choose which one would you want to buy for your child. Plastic teethers should be avoided completely. The teether you buy should be BPA free.
  • Colors: Look for attractive colors. Let the child choose the favorite color of the teether you have selected.
  • Shape: Make sure your child can easily put the teether in his or her mouth and that the teether is not very bulky. Also you can check if the teether will reach the molar region of your child’s mouth. You can go for teething rings which is a big hit among teething babies.
  • No sharp margins or beads: Also look for any sharp margins or beads that might be there in the teether which if broken can be swallowed. It is better to choose a teether which comes as one piece and does not have any parts.
  • Easy to hold: Make sure the teether is easy to hold, so that your child feels comfortable holding and directing it into the mouth.

You can keep the teether in the fridge (NOT FREEZER) for around half an hour before you give it to your child to help soothe the teething pain.

Make sure the teether is always clean.

2. A Wash cloth:

A clean and cold washcloth is all that is required sometimes to do the trick. You can keep it in the fridge for around 30-60 minutes after dipping it in clean water and just give your child to nibble on it whenever required. Make sure there are no loose threads. Let the little one use it for how much ever time he or she wants. The cold cloth will help in reducing the irritation and the redness in the gums, thus relieving the teething pain.

3. Massage:

Massage your baby’s gums 4-5 times a day using a clean cold cloth or a moist gauge piece wrapped around your finger. This will surely help in relieving some teething pain and discomfort.

4. Become your baby’s chew toy:

Yes this helps. Make sure your hands are clean and let your child gnaw on your fingers. Might be you have a little discomfort but your child will enjoy it for sure and the teething pain will reduce.

5. Metal spoon:

Imagine, you had no idea that your child has started teething, and suddenly at night your child is cranky and crying and irritable, and you suddenly notice, ohhh the gums are sore. At this point you do not have any teether with you, so a metal spoon comes handy here. Use the blunt end of the spoon and let your child chew over it. This will help in reducing the pain and discomfort. But, make sure the child doesn’t hurt himself or herself and let this be done only under supervision of an adult.

You can also cool the metal spoon in the fridge for 30 minutes and give your child to chew on.

6. Fruit nibblers:

If your child is older that 6 months and has started eating fruits, you can put the child’s favorite fruit in the nibbler and freeze it and then give it to your child. It will be nutritious as well as help soothe the sour gums.

But make sure the child doesn’t keep dropping it and putting it back in the mouth.

This Fisher-Price teether can help your child nibble on his or her favorite fruits.

7. Teething sticks or biscuits

If your child has started eating solids, and can chew well you can try the teething sticks and biscuits available in the market. But make sure to read the ingredients and check for anything that might cause allergy to your child.

Also the teething sticks and biscuits can be easily broken, so it is better to give it to the child only under supervision to prevent any kind of chocking.

8. Milk Popsicle:

You can even make milk popsicle and give it to you child. It will help in reducing the redness and relieving the teething pain. Also your child might just enjoy it in the summers.

9. Medication:

If you find no relief in the teething pain even after doing all the above home remedies, you can try giving acetaminophen (but only if you have been previously giving it), in the dosage as prescribed by your physician. If you need to give it more than once, then the best thing to do is visit a pediatrician as there might be some other cause of the crankiness.

Are the oral gels available in the market safe??

There are a lot of oral gels available in the market for kids, which say that they will help in soothing the teething pain. But is it recommended to use them? The answer is NO.

The FDA recommends against using these teething gels as they contain Benzocaine which is a local anesthetic and gets swallowed by the child to sometimes cause serious conditions such as methemoglobinemia, where the oxygen caring capacity of the red blood cells is reduced drastically.

So, it is better to avoid such gels which are available in the market.

When to visit a medical specialist??

  1. If you have tried all the above home remedies and still you are not able to console your child, it is time to visit a medical specialist.
  2. If your child is having a high grade fever (above 100.4 degrees), it is time to visit a medical specialist.
  3. If your child is having loose motions, vomiting, cough or cold, it is time to visit a medical specialist.
  4. If your child is having a body rash, it is time to visit a medical specialist.

Tips and tricks!

Nursing mothers:

If you are a nursing mother and your child has been biting you while feeding, massage your baby’s gums with a clean cold moist cotton cloth immediately before feeding and if still the baby bites, withdraw and say no. You can feed after some time again.

You can also pump and give in a bottle or use a nipple shield. But make sure whatever you use is properly sterilized before every use.

The drooling:

Some kids drool excessively while teething. If this goes for your child, then make sure your child’s face is always dry, as in case the drool dries on the face your child might get rashes. Also you can apply a moisturizer to prevent the drool from sticking to the face.

You might need an extra set of bibs if your child drools during teething.

Teething is a natural process and everyone goes through it. Sometimes it is a little easy and some times a little hard. Keeping patience and following the home remedies helps in relieving teething pain in almost all the children.

Remember, “This too shall pass.”

Happy parenting!!

This article contains affiliate links which means I might receive a commission if you purchase an item using these links, but this does not mean you will have to pay something extra for these.

Choosing the Best Toothpaste for Kids!

Most of the parents come to us at 32 Sparklets or ask us questions on social media that do we need to start brushing our kids teeth and which is the best toothpaste we can use for the child??

And the answer is YES! Each tooth in the mouth is important and is there for a purpose, whether it is a milk tooth or a permanent tooth. So, it is very very important to start brushing as soon as the first tooth erupts in the baby’s mouth. In fact it is very important to start cleaning the baby’s gums and tongue from the first day of birth.

Starting early is the key. Brushing twice a day is a must to have a good oral hygiene and preserve the milk teeth which are important to later have healthy permanent teeth.

Other doubts are pertaining to the toothpaste. Should we use a fluoride free toothpaste or a fluoridated toothpaste for our child?? When should we start using the toothpaste?? Which is the best toothpaste available?? My child doesn’t know how to spit, so should I be still using a tooth paste??

Here this post will help you solve all the doubts regarding what, when, how much of the toothpaste you need to use for your child.

When Should I start brushing my child’s teeth?

Brushing of kids teeth should start as soon as the first tooth erupts in the baby’s mouth. When the child drinks milk or eats food, it starts getting deposited on the surface of the tooth, whether it is a single tooth or many teeth. So, to remove these deposits we need to brush the child’s teeth. If ignored, the deposits will start demineralising the teeth and causing cavities.

So, we need to start brushing the child’s teeth as soon as the first tooth erupts in the baby’s mouth to preserve them and save the child from the discomfort and the pain.

Do not believe the myths like, “You do not need to brush the baby’s teeth until all of them erupt.” or “Milk teeth are not important as they will eventually fall off.”

Why should I use a toothpaste for brushing my child’s teeth?

Toothbrush alone just cleans the surface of the tooth and removes the deposits. But a best toothpaste will help in protecting the tooth from getting decayed. So, it is very important to clean the child’s teeth with an age appropriate toothpaste, twice a day.

Not only will it clean the tooth and protect it from cavities, but it will also give a freshness in the mouth of the baby.

Can I use an adult toothpaste for my child?

It is a big NO. An adult toothpaste contains approximately 1000ppm of Fluoride, which is not safe if swallowed by children especially under the age of 6 years. It might cause fluorosis. A kids toothpaste contains less than 500ppm of fluoride. If the kids age appropriate toothpaste is used in the correct amount and even if it is swallowed by the child, then there won’t be any harm.

So, it is always preferred to use a kids age appropriate toothpaste.

Which is the best toothpaste for my child?

Any kids age appropriate toothpaste is good for your child. But it is preferred to use a Fluoridated kids toothpaste as directed by ADA in 2014. A correct amount of fluoridated toothpaste will help in preventing cavities by reducing enamel dissolution and increasing fluoride uptake of enamel. It helps in creating a fluoride reservoir, and thus preventing cavities. Kids brushing twice a day with an age appropriate fluoridated toothpaste have considerably less number of cavities than kids brushing only once a day.

So, it is advised to brush your child’s teeth twice a day with a kids age appropriate fluoridated toothpaste. most of the toothpastes are age specific, e.g. 0-2 years, 2-6 years, 6 years+. According to the ADA you can use a pea size of adult toothpaste once the child turns 9 years of age.

What amount of toothpaste should I use for my Child?

The most important thing is to decide what amount of toothpaste you should apply on the child’s toothbrush.

Water fluoridation is a step taken by the government in most of the countries to help achieve an optimal fluoride level. But in some places in country like ours (India) the level of fluoride in water is high and therefore fluoridated toothpaste can be avoided to prevent fluorosis.

The best thing to do is visit a dentist and get a proper routine dental examination done once every 6 months and your dentist will guide you which toothpaste you need to use for your child.

Which are the best toothpaste available in the market?

There are a plenty of toothpaste available in the market for your child. But which is the best toothpaste is the question.

1. As mentioned above the best thing to do is check for the ADA or IDA seal on the toothpaste.

2. Check for the fluoride level of the toothpaste (prefer a fluoridated toothpaste)

3. Choose the flavor your child likes the best.

Following is a list of best kids fluoridates toothpastes available in the market:

  1. Colgate kids- This toothpaste is available in all the ages and different flavors. You can use a toothpaste according to your child’s favorite flavor.
  2. Kidodent- This toothpaste is a non flavored kids fluoridated toothpaste.
  3. Cheerio- This toothpaste is from Dr. Reddy’s Laboratory and is a gel based kids fluoridated toothpaste. Personally, my daughter loves it.
  4. Tom’s of Maine Children’s Natural Fluoride Toothpaste- This is a ADA accepted natural kids fluoridated toothpaste in different fruit flavored. It doesn’t contain any artificial flavors and preservatives.
  5. Aquafresh kids Toothpaste- Not just cavity protection this toothpaste also helps in preventing bad breath. It comes in an amazing bubble gum taste which is one of the favorite among kids.
  6. Pediflorkidz Toothpaste- Available in four yummy flavors, this toothpaste helps in providing cavity protection and remineralization.
  7. Crest Kids /crest cavity protection- This anti cavity bubble gum flavored gel toothpaste protects your child’s teeth from cavities.

Besides brushing your child’s teeth and using the best toothpaste for your child, their are a few other pointers you need to remember for a healthy and a beautiful smile:

  1. 1. Avoid sticky food like chocolate, chips and biscuits.
  2. 2. If there is no spacing between your child’s milk teeth flossing is a must. For permanent teeth floss twice a day.
  3. 3. Visit a dentist once every 6 months for a routine dental examination. First dental visit of the child should be done within 6 months of the eruption of the first tooth or by the child’s first birthday, whichever is earlier. Also, looking at your child’s teeth your dentist might recommend your the best toothpaste for your child.
  4. 4. In case required, your dentist will advise if your child needs fluoride varnish application. If yes, you will have to get it done.

Happy Parenting!

This article contains affiliate links which means I might receive a commission if you purchase an item using these links, but this does not mean you will have to pay something extra for these.

Does stress affect your oral health ??

STRESS, a feeling of emotional and physical tension, is commonly seen which we find very reluctant to accept.

In countries like ours, where it is considered to be a taboo to be stressed or depressed, we hide it, thinking what people will think, as it is said, “Log kya kahenge”.

Seeking for a professional help is thought upon as something unthinkable and again, “Log kya kahenge” sets in.

But, is seeking for help really that bad?? If we can visit a doctor for our physical health, then what is wrong to consult for mental health and well being.

If the mental health is not good, then directly or indirectly it will cause changes and problems in the physical health.

Not just the vital organs of our body, but stress also affects the Oral Health. If the oral health is affected, it will result in affecting the other parts of the body as well. When you have pain or discomfort of any kind in your mouth, you will not be able to eat properly. And when you can not eat properly your body doesn’t get the proper nutrition, therefore affecting your physical health as well. So, here is how your oral health is affected when you are stressed.

Poor Oral Hygiene

First and the foremost when we are stressed we care less about ourselves and surely ignore the oral hygiene. We brush for less amount of time, forget to floss, ignore rinsing after meals and so on. If the duration of the stress is short, the effects would be temporary and if the duration is long, the effects would most likely be permanent and will affect your oral health drastically. Eventually you will start getting cavities, gum diseases and other oral problems which would require you to get a proper treatment done.

Maintain Good Oral Hygiene

Prevention:

  1. 1. Brush twice a day using a pea size of fluoridated toothpaste.
  2. 2. Rinse your mouth after every meal
  3. 3. Visit your dentist once every 6 months for a routine dental examination
  4. 4. Drink plenty of water

Dry mouth

Dry mouth is mainly seen in women after menopause, which is a result of hormonal changes. But stress is another factor which causes dry mouth. The dryness thus leads to other problems like dental cavities and periodontal disease.

Sometimes when you are under medication for stress, depression or anxiety, these medicines can also lead to dry mouth, for which you should inform your doctor and it can be treated accordingly.

Drink Plenty of Water and Other Fluids

Prevention:

  1. 1. Drinking plenty of fluids is the key
  2. 2. If you are on antidepressants and having dry mouth, visit your medical specialist
  3. 3. Chew on sugarless gum
  4. 4. Try Saliva substitutes
  5. 5. Do not breath through your mouth

Grinding or Clenching of Teeth

Grinding of teeth is mainly seen in stress, anger or anxiety. Grinding in the night is known as Bruxisim and in the day is known as Bruxomania. Most of the time you grind your teeth in the night and might not be aware of it. This will lead to damage to the teeth, problems in your temporomandibular Joint (located infront of your ears), soreness in the muscles around your head and jaws.

Try to Avoid Grinding or Clenching of Teeth

Prevention:

  1. 1. Stay stress free
  2. 2. Talk about your worries to someone who understands you or a medical specialist (psychologist)
  3. 3. Visit your dentist once every 6 months for a routine dental examination
  4. 4. Get a night guard

Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ) Disorders

The temporomandibular joint is the joint infront of the ears and is connected to various muscles. The TMJ helps in the opening and the closing movements of the jaw. When there is stress and we grind the teeth, this causes spasm in the muscles and therefore causes difficulty in opening and closing of the jaw. So, along with the soreness in the muscles, slowly you start developing TMJ disorders, which are relatively more difficult to treat.

So, besides taking just an analgesic when you have pain around the muscles of your ears, it is better to visit a dentist and get a proper clinical examination done.

Temporomandibular Joint Disorders

Prevention:

  1. 1. Reduce your stress
  2. 2. Dip a towel in a hot water and squeeze it. Then apply the towel in front of your ear and around the muscles of your face. Repeat it at least twice a day for 7-10 days
  3. 3. Do warm saline (warm water with salt) rinses 3-4 times a day
  4. 4. Visit your dentist and he or she will prescribe you with muscle relaxants

Periodontal Disease

Periodontal disease involves the gums and the other structures surrounding the teeth. The periodontal disease is caused by poor oral hygiene, diabetes and stress. This periodontal disease can cause bleeding gums, gum infections, your teeth to be loose. All this can also lead to bad breath and difficulty in eating, pain and discomfort.

Periodontal Disease

Prevention:

  1. 1. Once again, stay stress free
  2. 2. Maintain good oral hygiene, by brushing twice a day
  3. 3. Floss daily. Floss at least once before bed time.
  4. 4. Maintain your sugar levels
  5. 5. Visit a dentist once every 6 months for a routine dental examination

Canker Sores

Also known as the mouth ulcers, canker sores are very commonly seen during stress. These are very painful, but not contagious or dangerous. They heal on there own within a span of 7-10 days. But lead to difficulty in eating, drinking, brushing and sometimes even talking.

Certain studies have revealed that students have more mouth ulcers during exams and considerably less when they are on vacations.

Canker Sores

Prevention:

  1. 1. Stay stress free
  2. 2. Avoid any sharp tooth
  3. 3. Rinse 2-3 times a day with a good mouth wash. You can also do warm saline rinses
  4. 4. Maintain your Vitamin B levels

Cold Sores

Cold sores are small tiny ulcers caused by the Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV).

When we are stressed our immunity levels are low which might cause the dormant HSV to get active and cause the infection. They appear as tiny painful fluid filled blisters or ulcers mostly found in clusters. These are contagious and heal within a period of 2-3 weeks. So, it is advisable not to touch the sores even with your bare fingers.

Cold Sores

Prevention:

  1. 1. These are self limiting, but you can apply ice to reduce the pain or can take pain killers
  2. 2. Aloevera gel can be applied
  3. 3. Your doctor might prescribe antiviral drugs to you for the cold sores

There is a lot that can happen in your body, just by being stressed. So, the best thing to do is stay stress free as much as you can.

During the COVID times it has been seen that stress and depression has become normal among a large amount of population.

But what we need to remember is, the future is not what we can take care of, the present is what matters the most.

Stay stress free, stay happy!!

Everything you need to know about the Wisdom Teeth for better oral health!

The wisdom teeth are the third molars, that are the last teeth to erupt in your mouth. The age of eruption of wisdom teeth, is approximately 17 years to 21 years. Any wisdom tooth that do not erupt at their proper position but are present in the jaw are called Impacted teeth.

Impacted Upper Wisdom Tooth, the red line shows the change in the direction of the tooth, which causes food to accumulate between the two teeth.
Impacted Lower Wisdom Tooth, the red line shows the change in the direction of the tooth, which causes food to accumulate between the two teeth.

Most of the times there are 4 wisdom teeth in our mouth, 2 in the upper jaw and 2 in the lower jaw. But sometimes, some people do not have all of them.

An impacted wisdom tooth can either be completely inside the jaw bone, or break through the soft tissue partially. The tooth can erupt in different angulation which causes the tooth to get stuck in the jaw bone many times. Another cause for the tooth to be impacted is less space available for the tooth as it is the last one to erupt. According to many theories, evolution has caused the jaw size in humans to decrease leaving less space for wisdom tooth to erupt.

How do I know if I have my Wisdom Tooth or not?

Including the wisdom teeth there are total 32 teeth in our mouth. You can count the number of teeth in your mouth and if the total is 32 then you have all your wisdom teeth.

Sometimes, few of your other teeth like the lateral incisors are missing by birth or you might have lost your teeth in an accident or due to cavities. This might reduce the number of teeth you have, despite the wisdom teeth being present.

In that case you can check your molar teeth. Each side of your mouth has 3 molars if the wisdom teeth are included, 3 in the right and left upper jaw each and 3 in the right and left lower jaw each. So, you can count your molars, to be 12 in number. In case you have lost a molar due to cavity which is the case most of the times when the tooth is missing, you would know.

Or, you can visit a dentist for a routine dental examination which is mandatory at least once every 6 months and your doctor will let you know if you have your wisdom teeth and if you need to do anything regarding them. Sometimes the wisdom tooth is completely impacted which only your dentist can tell you about after taking the X- Rays.

How do I know if my Wisdom Tooth is Impacted?

If your tooth is only partially visible then it is impacted. You will have to visit your dentist to know for sure if your tooth is impacted as your dentist will take proper X-Rays and examine clinically and let you know. In case you need to get the tooth removed, your doctor will send you to an Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon who are experts in this field and will help you remove your tooth if necessary. The tooth might be removed due to wisdom tooth infection or may be because your tooth might cause infection to the adjacent teeth which can be prevented if found early.

Follow the Yellow line and see the gingiva (soft tissue) covering the wisdom teeth. This is the source of infection and lets food to accumulate in the pocket formed between the tooth and the soft tissue.

Why do I need to get my Wisdom tooth removed?

The wisdom teeth are likely the one to get infected due to various reasons:

1. There is no space for them to grow or come out of the jaw bone so they tend to be in a different direction to the adjacent molar.

2. The tooth might be completely located inside your jaw bone. This leads to the formation of a cyst around the tooth which can grow to enormous size and form even tumors.

3. The tooth might be angulated which causes food to get wedged between the two teeth i.e. the wisdom tooth and the tooth before that, as it is difficult to brush and keep clean in that area. This causes the tooth decay in the adjacent molar as well.

Follow the red circle. As the Wisdom tooth was angulated there was pressure from it to the adjacent tooth as well as food accumulation which caused a cavity in the adjacent tooth thus leading to the need for root canal treatment in adjacent tooth.

4. The soft tissue over the wisdom teeth can be inflamed as the tooth in the upper jaw might be hitting the soft tissue. This is called a pericoronal flap and leads to Pericoronitis.

Pericoronitis, due to inflammation of the soft tissue covering the Wisdom Tooth.

5. If you have the upper and the lower wisdom teeth, then sometimes due to less space you might be having cheek biting which is painful and also leads to reduced opening of your mouth.

Due to all or any of the above mentioned reasons your doctor might advise you to get a Wisdom Tooth Removal done.

Till when can I wait before getting my Wisdom Tooth Extracted?

If you are having any of the above symptoms then it is better to get the tooth removed as soon as possible.

The tooth can be removed immediately after the crown portion of the tooth is formed.

Some individuals do not have any problem at all with the wisdom tooth, so there is no need for extraction in such cases.

What are the symptoms of Impacted Wisdom Teeth?

Some times there won’t be any symptom at all, and you would not even know your tooth has erupted or not.

But once the tooth gets infected or is not able to erupt properly, the symptoms will start.

1. Pain and tenderness in the region of the tooth: This will be due to inflammation of the gums over it or due to cheek biting or both.

2. Pain and tenderness in the jaw: Your jaw might be painful to touch in the posterior region (region of the wisdom tooth) even from outside.

3. Bleeding gums: Bleeding gums can be seen in that region due to inflammation during brushing or eating something hard

4. Swelling: Swelling both inside and outside of the jaw can be seen which can be due to a cyst or an abscess (pus filled cavity)

5. Change of taste: There can be a bad taste in the mouth, which can be due to the pus release from the soft tissue or also due to keeping the mouth closed for a long time due to pain.

6. Difficulty in mouth opening: Due to cheek biting or swelling, there can be difficulty in opening the mouth wide.

7. Bad breath: Pain, swelling, pus discharge and keeping the mouth closed can all collectively cause bad breath.

When do I need to visit a dentist?

It is always better to have a dental visit once every 6 months. A dental visit helps you rule out any initial dental problem you might be having before it starts paining (as that is the main reason a person visits a dentist).

Once you start having any kind of discomfort in the back side of your upper or lower jaw it is time to visit a dentist without any delay. For even a smallest problem as small as food impaction in that region it is best to have a dental visit. The dentist will guide you after checking clinically what needs to be done.

What if I don’t get my wisdom tooth removed?

Some times our doctor mentions a small surgery might be required to get the wisdom tooth out. This scares us and we find all the ways to prevent the removal of the wisdom tooth as it was only causing minor problems as of now. But this might not be the case and the problems might increase in the future.

1.You might get a cavity in the tooth which will eventually start paining and then you will have to get the tooth removed. You can opt for a root canal treatment ( https://dentistmaa.com/decayed-wisdom-tooth-prevention/ ) , but in most of the cases that is not the case as the mouth opening and the space to work in, in that region is very less and limited. So, the only solution left is the extraction of the tooth, which you could have done before the pain had started. Also, as the cavity grows the tooth might fracture from the crown portion i.e. the portion visible in the mouth. This makes it even more difficult for the tooth to be extracted,

2. If your tooth had come in an angulation to your adjacent molar, there might be accumulation of food between the two teeth which will cause your second molar to decay and finally go for either a filling or a root canal treatment. So, you will have to go for treatment of two teeth, rather than one.

3. The wisdom tooth develops in the sacs and sometimes when the tooth doesn’t erupt the sac might change into a cyst or even a tumor in some cases. So, in case that is seen in the x ray you should immediately get it removed from and oral and maxillofacial surgeon.

4. Cheek biting is another problem that a third molar causes. Not only is it painful but also reduces your mouth opening making it difficult to chew anything properly.

Not getting your wisdom teeth removed when it is required is only temporary and you will eventually have to get the extractions done.

How painful is a third molar surgery?

A third molar surgery is always done under anesthesia. If you are really scared you can search for a dentist who uses conscious sedation which makes you feel more relaxed during the procedure.

After the anesthesia has been given you will not feel any kind of pain at all. Yes you might feel a little discomfort because of all the instruments that are there in your mouth during the procedure.

What precautions do I need to take after the surgery?

After the surgery is done, your doctor will pack the extraction site with some moist gauze piece or cotton for the next 15-20 minutes to avoid any bleeding post operatively.

1.You will remove that cotton after washing your hands and discard it in the dustbin. Do not spit it out.

2. For the first 24 hours:

  • – Do not spit
  • – Do not rise
  • – Avoid brushing , so that you do not have to spit
  • – Take cold fluids or food at room temperature only
  • – Drink a glass of water after every meal
  • – Apply cold compression from outside near the angle of your lower jaw in case of lower wisdom tooth extraction.

3. After 24 hours:

  • – Brush your teeth
  • – Start rinsing with warm water with salt 4-5 times a day for 7-10 days

4. Avoid smoking and drinking

5. Make sure you do not get hurt in the region of surgery (extraorally)

6. Follow your doctors advice regarding the medication that he or she might have prescribed

7. Visit your dentist after 7-10 days for suture removal.

Which specialty of dentist should I visit for my treatment?

Oral and Maxillofacial surgeons are the experts in the surgical as well as normal extractions of the third molar i.e. the wisdom teeth.

Will I be free of pain after the removal of my third molar?

As there would be a wound (extraction socket) after the extraction is done, you might feel pain and discomfort for a few days after the extraction of your wisdom tooth. But eventually you will be pain free which was due to the tooth before the extraction.

This was a little wisdom on wisdom teeth.

For further details you can contact us on 32Sparklets@gmail.com

Decayed Wisdom Tooth: Prevention and Treatment Options

Wisdom tooth, commonly known as the third molar or akal jaad in hindi, is most commonly seen decayed tooth.

Unlike its name, it is not at all related to loss of wisdom. If the teeth are missing or have to be removed due to any reasons such as a cavity i.e. decay in the tooth or if the tooth is impacted i.e. stuck in the bone due to the small jaw size in most of the cases, there is no loss of wisdom at all. So, it is just a misnomer.

As the evolution is happening, the size of the human jaw is decreasing slowly. As these teeth are the last to erupt they do not get proper space to erupt. So, they end up either coming out in a direction where they do not help in chewing or are impacted i.e. remain inside the bone.

This leads to improper brushing in the region. There might also be a gap in between the second and the third molar where the food gets accumulated leading to cavity in both the teeth.

How to prevent your wisdom tooth from getting decayed?

1. Proper brushing: Proper brushing is the key. The head of the adult tooth brush that we use, is quite big. So, what we can do is use a kids toothbrush specifically in the region of third molars.

The upper third molars, most of the times erupt in such a way that there is just a little space between the tooth and the cheek region. So, in that case the adult toothbrush does not reach especially over the outer surface of the teeth and that leads to cavities. These cavities are not visible when you look in the mirror and therefore go unnoticed until the pain starts. I personally use a kids tooth brush to reach all the areas that are not accessible and so have prevented the decay in my wisdom teeth.

2. Regular dental visit: A visit to the dentist once every 6 months for a routine dental examination is a must. During this period the dentist will examine all your teeth and gums. In case your third molar has started developing a cavity, he or she will let you know and will help you get a filling done to stop the spread and prevent further pain or discomfort. They will also guide you in case your tooth is impacted and you need to get it removed as it might cause the adjacent tooth to get decayed.

3. Fluoride Treatments: If the water supply in your area has less or no fluoride, you can ask your dentist for fluoride application that will prevent the cavities to occur.

4.Healthy Eating Habits: One of the most important things to stay cavity free is to avoid unhealthy diet especially the sticky food, like chocolate, chips, biscuits and candies. Any thing that sticks to your teeth will attract the bacteria in that region and will lead to tooth decay. The best thing to do is snack only once a day and brush or rinse immediately after that. This will prevent the food to accumulate on the surface of the tooth.

What are the treatment options for a decayed wisdom Tooth?

There are mainly 3 treatment options depending on the severity of the decay with respect to the tooth.

1. Filling: When the decay has not reached the blood vessels and nerves of the tooth (Pulp), a simple filling is what is required to be done. This will prevent the cavity, i.e. the decay to further involve the tooth. These are of various types, and your dentist will decide after checking clinically, which one is the best for you.

2. Root Canal Treatment: The second option is a root canal treatment. When the decay has reached the pulp and you are having pain in the tooth, a root canal is the treatment of choice. It is a procedure of 30-45 minutes and in most of the cases a single sitting is required. Endodontists are the dentists who are trained in the root canal treatments.

3. Extraction: In case the tooth is almost decayed or is at a place where it will not help you in chewing food, your dentist might ask you to get it extracted. Extraction for wisdom tooth can be either a simple extraction or can be a surgical extraction depending upon the position of the tooth. Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons are trained to do any kind of extraction. Surgical extractions are simple minor surgical procedures which again take maximum of 30-45 minutes of time until and unless the tooth is stuck and a little more time is needed.





For more information you can also visit www.32sparklets.com or book an appointment with Dr. Garima Verma (MDS Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeon) regarding your decayed wisdom tooth.

As it is said, “Prevention is better than cure.” Same is the case with a wisdom tooth. Prevent from getting the cavity and get a routine dental examination and it would be less painful and less expensive.

Do you have Bleeding Gums??

Have you been seeing some bleeding while brushing lately??

Have you noticed pink color of your toothpaste when you spit it out ??

If this has happened only once or twice or when you started using a new toothbrush or may be flossed a little too hard, it is fine. But in case it has been happening everyday, despite you being using a soft brush and flossing carefully, there is something to be concerned about.

There are a lot of causes of bleeding gums, but most common being Gingival Inflammation as we call it. It is the inflammation of the gingiva i.e. your gums, which might have been caused by improper oral hygiene. A layer of plaque (debris and the bacteria) gets deposited on the surface of our teeth which causes the inflammation of the gums. This leads to redness, bleeding, swelling and tenderness in the gums. This is the early sign of gum disease i.e. Gingivitis.

This plaque if left on the surface can harden and form stone like structure the Calculus, which can not be removed with a toothbrush and is the cause of more severe form of gum disease, Periodontitis. It involves the bone as well and therefore due to the loss of bone in that region the teeth loose their support, and start moving and eventually fall.

There are many other reasons for Bleeding Gums:

  1. 1. Bleeding Disorders
  2. 2. Hormonal changes due to pregnancy
  3. 3. Vitamin K deficiency
  4. 4. Vitamin C deficiency
  5. 5. Patients on blood thinners

If the bleeding is due to none of the above reasons, then a poor oral hygiene is the reason most likely.

How to avoid the Bleeding of Gums:

1. Maintain good oral hygiene

The key to healthy gums is good oral hygiene, Brushing twice daily using a pea size of toothpaste and flossing at least once a day will help you to maintain a good oral hygiene. The plaque that is formed on the surface of the tooth needs to be removed to prevent the gums from getting inflamed.

Remember to keep your brush at an angle of 45o to the gum line, and move the brush from the gums towards the teeth (chewing surface). In this way your gums will stay clean and healthy.

2. Rinse with warm salt water

Rinsing with warm water with salt is a good practice and helps your gums to stay healthy and sound. Rinsing once daily is fine and is much better than all the mouthwashes available in the market.

3. Visit a dentist

A visit to a dentist once every 6 months for a routine dental examination and a scaling (cleaning) if your doctor feels it is required is what is a must. Do not avoid going to a dentist. As it is said, “Dentistry is not expensive, neglect is.”

4. Take a healthy and a balanced diet

Yes, not taking a healthy diet doesn’t just causes problems with your overall health but also with your oral health. Lack of vitamins like Vitamin K, and Vitamin C can cause bleeding gums, and is avoidable if a good diet is followed.

5. Avoid smoking

Smoking is directly related to gum disease. Smoking weakens the body’s immune system and therefore makes it difficult for the body to fight against infections. So, again not just for the general health, but also for the oral health smoking should be avoided, and should not be made a habit first of all. As smoking is addictive, the habit is difficult to break.

6. Avoid too much of Sugar

Of course sugar is addictive for most of us. But not rinsing or brushing after having too much of sugar routinely might cause gum disease. The sugar will stick to the surface of the gums and teeth and form plaque, and which if not removed will form calculus and cause irritation in the gums and therefore bleeding gums. So, though it is addictive sugar should be avoided.

Treatment for Bleeding gums:

Once you visit your dentist, he or she will ask you a couple of questions:

  1. 1. Since when are you experiencing bleeding gums
  2. 2. Are you on any medication
  3. 3. Are you expecting (for female patients)
  4. 4. How many times in a day you brush and floss
  5. 5. When was your last dental visit
  6. 6. Any pain and sensitivity in any of the teeth

After the questionnaire your dentist will examine your oral cavity (mouth). He or she will examine all the teeth, gums and will take any X-Rays if required.

For most of the cases of bleeding gums where there is no other underlying cause or medical history, a thorough complete scaling (cleaning) is recommended. It is a painless procedure and may take around 15-20 minutes. In most of the dental clinics it is done with an ultrasonic scaler which is completely safe.

After the visit you need to ask your doctor for the next appointment as a scaling should be done minimum once every year or as per your doctor’s advice.

There might be mild sensitivity in your gums and teeth for 2-3 days after the appointment and should be fine with warm water rinses with salt. In case it persists, you can once visit your doctor for a follow up.

Dental Tip and Advice: If you have sensitivity in your teeth, never start using a toothpaste for sensitivity after seeing some commercial in the TV. Instead visit a dentist and get proper treatment done to avoid the problem to increase any further. This will also prevent from getting a more invasive treatment done.

When should I start brushing my child’s teeth??

There are so many myths which are related to the baby’s teeth even in the times of so much advancements and modernization.

Myth 1: You should not brush baby’s teeth at least till the age of 2 years

Myth 2: Milk teeth are just temporary and do not need to be cleaned often as cavities in the baby teeth do not matter

Myth 3: There is no need to visit a dentist until the kid is a little older

Brushing of the baby’s teeth should start as soon as the first tooth erupts in the baby’s mouth and should never be delayed.

Every tooth that has erupted in the child’s mouth is as important as the next tooth that will be erupting soon or as important as the permanent teeth the kid will eventually have. The milk teeth serve very important purpose for child’s health, speech, confidence and appearance as well. So, it is very important to help the child preserve all of them all through the childhood.

Why is brushing important for kids?

1. Brushing of kids teeth help prevent cavities which are difficult to treat as the kid might not be co operative.

2. It helps prevent bad breath which might be there due to all the food and the milk that might be accumulating in the child’s mouth.

3. Starting to brush early helps in the developing of the habit and it is not difficult to get the child use to it when he or she grows up.

4. During brushing the parent can easily get to know if there is any cavity which has started to develop as otherwise it might get missed.

5. It also gives a sense of freshness.

How to brush your child’s teeth?

# Chose a kids age appropriate soft toothbrush, you can also start with a silicone finger brush.

# After the age of 6 months you can start using a grain size of kids age appropriate toothpaste till the age of 3 years and a pea size after the age of 3 years.

# Keep your brush at a 45 Degree angle on the gum line of the last teeth and bring the brush downwards, repeat the same for all the teeth and remember to clean both the inside and the outside of the teeth.

# You can also brush in a simple circular motion.

# Remember to brush twice daily for 2 minutes each.

# Change the toothbrush after every 3-4 months

The full set of the permanent teeth will erupt only by the age of 12 years and so it is very important to preserve the baby teeth till then. Do not believe in any myths and start brushing your child’s teeth as soon as the first tooth erupts in the baby’s mouth.

Happy Parenting!

When to start using toothpaste for kids?

Every parent wants his or her child to have a beautiful and a healthy smile.

ECC (Early childhood caries) is one of the most prevalent chronic childhood disease that is preventable. It not just causes aesthetic difficulties for the child but also causes pain and discomfort which prevents the child from eating food properly. It also lowers the self confidence of the child. Children miss a lot of school days just because of toothache caused by the early childhood caries.

If something causing so much trouble can be prevented then why not to prevent it at the first place.

1 out of every 5 kids, tend to get a cavity before they even enter kindergarten says a survey.

Brushing twice a day is just not sufficient. Using a good age appropriate toothpaste that doesn’t just clean the surface of the teeth but also protects it from the cavities is the key.

When should we start brushing baby’s teeth?

Brushing of baby teeth should start as soon as the first tooth erupts in the baby’s mouth.

Cleaning of baby’s gums and tongue should start as soon as the baby is born. This helps in keeping the baby’s mouth clean as well as creating a habit which will help the child to start brushing his or her teeth early without any tantrums or repulsion. Use a damp clean cotton cloth wrapped around your finger and gently clean the gums and tongue in a circular motion.

Once the teeth start to erupt use a silicone finger brush and slowly shift to a normal kids age appropriate toothbrush along with a grain size of kids age appropriate toothpaste.

When should a child start using a toothpaste?

According to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD), the sooner the better. A toothpaste cleans the surface of the tooth and if it has fluoride in it, it even protects the tooth from cavities.

The AAPD recommends the use of toothpaste for any child, who is above the age of 6 months. As, the dental visits are less prevalent among the children, it is important for the parents to at least help kids maintain a good oral hygiene at home.

There have been many doubts among the parents to use either a fluoridated toothpaste or a non fluoridated toothpaste.

What does fluoridated toothpaste do?

Fluoride is a mineral found even in water. It helps in forming a protective layer over the surface of enamel of the tooth and thus preventing the acid attack and therefore preventing cavities.

There are a lot of means by which fluoride can be used for prevention of cavities. Water fluoridation, topical application like fluoride varnishes, fluoridated toothpastes and mouthwashes, all help in preventing cavities. Some studies also show the use of topical fluoride application can sometimes cause the dental caries in the initial stages to stop progressing any further.

But excess intake of fluoride causes fluorosis which is also not a good sign. White spots over the surface of the tooth can be a sign of fluorosis.

Appropriate amount of toothpaste

AAPD recommends on using an appropriate amount of kids age appropriate fluoridated toothpaste since the eruption of the first tooth of the child i.e. after the age of 6 months.

  • Till the age of 3 years– Use a smear i.e. a grain (rice) size of kids age appropriate fluoridated toothpaste twice a day.
  • After the age of 3 years– Use a pea size of kids age appropriate fluoridated toothpaste twice a day.

Toothpaste used in the correct amount does not cause any problems to the child even if it is swallowed. In case a large amount is swallowed the child might get a stomach upset and a pediatrician should be consulted as soon as possible.

Trick- To prevent your child from swallowing the toothpaste you can tilt the child’s head downwards and let the toothpaste and the water flow out.

To help a child develop good oral hygiene habits it is the responsibility of both the parents to help develop the habit early. Habits formed early are more easy to follow and difficult to change. So good habits are what are important to be incorporated in the child’s life as early as can be.

Happy Parenting!

First Dental visit for Children!

Ever wondered when exactly should you take your child for the first dental visit??

Due to the lack of awareness of dental health and hygiene, we as parents do not stress much on the dental visits. Until and unless there is pain or discomfort with both ourselves as well as our kids, we try to avoid as much as possible.

But this definitely should not be the case. Delaying a dental visit leads to a prolonged and invasive treatment, more discomfort and also more cost is involved.

So, when exactly should you take your child for the first dental visit ??

Your child’s first dental visit should be either at the child’s first birthday or within 6 months of the eruption of the first tooth, which ever is early.

Many parents feel that it is not necessary to get the teeth examined.

What possibly can go wrong with the kids teeth?

But, what we need to be aware about is, Early Childhood Caries (ECC). ECC is one of the most common dental problems in children and it can start as soon as the first tooth erupts in the babies mouth.

The American Academy of Pediatric dentistry also agrees that the dental visit of a child should be no later than 12 months of age. It also posses a lot of benefits towards the health of the child.

So, why is first dental visit so important??

  1. 1. It helps in detecting any problem related to the dentition, the jaws, the gums and the cheeks.

2. Any early cavities can be detected.

3. Your dentist can help you find out a solution to any of the oral habits, like thumb sucking that your child might be having.

4. The craniofacial development can be evaluated.

5. A tongue tie if present can be detected early.

How to plan for the first dental visit??

  1. 1. Plan the visit when your child is most active during the day. Never visit during the nap times. A visit during the morning times ends up being the best ones as the child is fresh.

2. Take an appointment before visiting your pedodontist i.e Kid’s Dentist. This will help in shortening the waiting time for your turn.

3. Feed your baby well before the visit, so that he or she do not feel hungry and get cranky.

4. You yourself need to be relaxed as, if you are worried the child can sense it.

What to expect during the first dental visit??

  1. 1. Your dentist will examine the jaws, teeth, gums and all the other oral tissues and let you know if anything is wrong.

2. Your dentist will check for any decay, and advise you on fluoride application in case required.

3. Your dentist will inform you if any of the dietary habits of your baby needs to be changed.

4. Your dentist will advise you regarding the oral habits which your child might be having.

5. Your dentist will help you understand how to maintain a good oral hygiene for your child.

During the dental visit your child might cry due to fear or stranger anxiety or any of the other reasons. But, this is totally fine and you just need to console your child and work it out with your dentist.

A dental visit is as important as a visit to a pediatrician for vaccinations and routine examination. Dental health is as important as the overall health and you should not wait for a problem to be there to visit a dentist.

Happy Parenting!

Do you need to clean your baby’s tongue??

Have you ever wondered how much bacteria that tiny mouth would be harboring when you just forget to clean it or think it is not important yet??

The day one of the new born’s life starts with intake of milk and this milk keeps depositing on the various surfaces in the mouth, the gums, the cheeks and especially the tongue.

It is parents duty to clean the infant’s tongue at least twice a day without failing to remember, as it is said oral health leads to the overall health.

When you remember to give your new born baby a warm water bath and wash the baby’s head too, then why not clean baby’s mouth every day?

It is important and mandatory to help your child have a clean mouth as important it is for you.

How to clean your infants tongue?

1. First and foremost, wash your hands. A new born baby doesn’t have a good immunity and therefore anything that goes into the child’s mouth should be clean.

2. Hold your baby in one arm till your chest such as you can clearly see the babies mouth.

3. Take a clean gauze piece or a cotton cloth and wrap it around your finger.

4. Dip it in luke warm water. Make sure it is just damp and not soaking wet.

5. Gently open the child’s mouth, by pulling down the lower lip a little and place your finger over the tongue.

6. Rub your finger with minimal pressure in circular motion over the child’s tongue to remove any white deposits that could be the milk.

Tips and Tricks

1. If your child is fussy or not in very good mood at the moment, delay the cleaning for until your child is feeling better.

2. Along with the tongue you can also clean the baby’s gums as well as the cheeks.

3. You can also use a silicone finger brush to clean the tongue instead of the gauze piece

4. If you are unable to remove the white patches, do not put pressure, it can be a fungal infection Candidiasis (Oral Thrush), visit a pediatrician.

5. Distract the child and make him or her laugh before cleaning so that he or she opens the mouth on their own.

6. Once your baby starts getting teeth, start cleaning the tooth, using either a silicone finger brush or a normal kids age appropriate toothbrush from day one.

7. Clean the tongue at least twice a day.

Happy Parenting!

Toothbrush Care Manual!!

Toothbrush, a necessity we can say, is one of the most neglected personal item, which is responsible for a lot of health issues for your body.

Which color toothbrush should I buy??
Which brand should I be looking for??
Should I buy the expensive funky one or a normal inexpensive toothbrush which just meets my needs??
Electric or Manual??

All these questions do not matter if we do not know how to take care of our tooth brush and keep it clean and healthy to be very frank.

There are few things we need to consider while taking care of our toothbrush:

1. Changing of the toothbrush

a. Change your toothbrush within 3-4 months.

b. Change your toothbrush if the bristles fray.
How to check if the bristles have frayed?
Turn your brush in the opposite direction. If you can see the bristles
coming out then the bristles have frayed, and it is time to change the
brush.

c. Change your toothbrush after you have a cold or a sore throat.

2. Rinsing the toothbrush after every use

Rinse your toothbrush in flowing tap water after every use to keep it clean from any remnant toothpaste or saliva or any food particle that might have stuck to it.

3. Keep your toothbrush upright in the toothbrush holder

Always keep your toothbrush upright so that the residual water in the bristles can drain off and keep your toothbrush dry, which can prevent the bacteria to accumulate, and help the brush dry.

4. Do not keep your brush in a closed container

Never keep your toothbrush in a closed container. This leads to the toothbrush being wet all the time and the bacteria might accumulate in the bristles due to the dampness and cause infection when you use the brush the next time.

The containers which are available with the brushes sometimes are for sole purpose of travelling when you need to keep your brush clean. Dry your toothbrush completely before packing it in those containers.

5. Never share toothbrush

It is highly advised never to share toothbrushes as it leads to the exchange of harmful bacteria from one person to the other. In no circumstances should a toothbrush be shared.

6. Avoid keeping the toothbrush near the toilet

Keeping the toothbrush near the toilet should be avoided as the bristles of the toothbrush can harbor even the fecal bacteria which might be released in the air when the toilet is flushed.

Many people prefer sanitizing their toothbrush, but according to the ADA (American Dental Association) there is no data that recommends the same and it is not necessary also.

It is a big NO, to put your toothbrush either in a microwave or in a dishwasher as the heat might damage the bristles making it ineffective for the further use.

Also it is unnecessary to put your brush in either a mouth wash or any other solvent to make it extra clean. Just cleaning it with running tap water plays the trick.

The same care can be followed for your kid’s silicone finger brush and also the teethers. There is no special thing that needs to be done.

Happy Brushing!

Want your child to be cavity free??? Here is how you can help them..

Every parent would want his or her child to have a beautiful cavity free smile. But the question is, how to maintain such beautiful smile??

  1. Give your child a happy atmosphere to live in which will always let your child be automatically happy and smile.
  2. A pretty smile comes from healthy, cavity free teeth, so as a parent you will have to help your child keep the teeth healthy and intact.

As it is said, “Dental health leads to overall health.” If your child is having healthy and cavity free teeth, he or she will be able to eat much better, will have a better health, and will be more happy.

The milk teeth (Deciduous teeth) are as important as the permanent teeth and should be preserved till the time they shed. Not only is it painful when there are cavities in our mouth but also kids loose their confidence when the anterior teeth are decayed, due to a not so pretty smile, they loose a lot of time when they are in pain, and could have done so much on those days when they had to miss school.

There are a lot of things parents can do to help their children have a caries free mouth.

1. Never put your child to sleep with a bottle filled with milk of juices

Anything that sticks to your babies teeth for a long period of time attracts a lot of germs and thus can cause bacteria to accumulate on the surface of the teeth causing dental caries or cavities. So, as a parent it is our duty not to make our children sleep with anything sweet in their mouth as it can initiate cavities.

If your child is in the habit of sleeping with a bottle in the mouth, make sure it is nothing but just drinking water (for kids above the age of 6 months). This will help prevent cavities and let the surface of the teeth be clean.

2. Start brushing early

The earlier you start the better it is. It will help in forming a habit of brushing and kids will not resist brushing of teeth as they grow up (as it is a very common complain among the parents).

Brushing of kids teeth should start as soon as the first tooth erupts in the babies mouth and cleaning of the babies gums and the tongue should start at birth itself.

You can take a clean cotton cloth or a gauge piece, wrap it around the finger and gently clean the babies gums and tongue.

Once the teeth start erupting, you can use a silicone finger brush and start brushing, slowly you can shift to a kids age appropriate toothbrush.

Brush your child’s teeth yourself till the age of at least 6 years and supervise them till 10 years of age.

Below is the link for our earlier post regarding exciting ways to get your toddler to brush their teeth.

3. Avoid sticky food

Sticky food is one of the main culprits of caries in children. Chocolate, chips, biscuits, lollipops, candies all stick to the surface of the teeth and stay there for a long time, attracting the bacteria on the surface of the tooth which in turn releases acids, causing the decay of the tooth. It is better not to introduce these food items to your child as long as you can.

The best thing to do if your child likes all this sticky food is to give it only once a day and make your child brush immediately after they are done eating. This will help preventing the caries and also letting child be aware of his or her oral health care.

4. Serve juice only during the meal times

Juice is another sweetener (especially the artificial juices), that causes dental caries as it forms a layer over the surface of the teeth. So, the juice should only be given to the child during the meal time so that it doesn’t stay over the surfaces for a very long time.

5. Visit a Pedodontist on your child’s first birthday or within 6 months of eruption of your child’s first tooth

Many parents say, “Why to visit a dentist for such a small child when their is no problem and that too for milk teeth?”

But what they don’t understand is milk teeth are as important as the permanent teeth and a dentist is the best person to tell you in case anything is wrong with your child’s teeth.

A visit to a pedodontist (kid’s dentist) is very important and should be done at the child’s first birthday or within 6 months of the eruption of the first tooth. This develops a habit of a annual dental check up and also prevent a problem at an early stage if their is any.

6. Give your child a balanced diet

Including raw food in your child’s diet such as fruits, salads, nuts are very important for the health as well as for the teeth. Avoid junk food as well as sweet food as it is harmful and is habit forming as well.

The habits once developed in the childhood will continue when your child grows up.

7. Use an appropriate amount of kids fluoridated toothpaste

If the fluoride levels in your drinking water is not high it is advised to use fluoridated kids toothpaste for your child.

Non fluoridated toothpaste just cleans the tooth surface but doesn’t prevent cavities. So, it is advised to use a grain size of kids age appropriate toothpaste for kids under the age of 3 years and a pea size of kids age appropriate toothpaste for kids above the age of 3 years.

8. Be a role model

Children tend to do what they see. If they see you brushing everyday and avoiding sticky food, they will eventually start coping it and doing the same for themselves as well.

Brush your teeth in front of them morning and night and this will give them a desire to do the same.

9. Give your child plenty of water everyday

Water is a neutralizing agent and helps clean off all the sticky food and acid that might have been produced. Give your child plenty of water through out the day. It is not just good for the teeth but also for the rest of the body.

10. Teach them the importance of maintaining oral hygiene

Tell them why brushing is important and why it is important not to eat too much of sweets and sticky food.

They will understand if you keep explaining it to them and also tell them the consequences of not brushing and not maintaining a good oral hygiene.

Show them pictures of kids with decayed teeth. Also show them videos of kids brushing their teeth and having beautiful smile.

Tell them how important the teeth are and also what it means to have a beautiful smile.

11. Never blow on your child’s food or milk

Often we tend to blow on our children’s food or milk in order to make it a little warm. But this should be completely avoided. A child’s mouth doesn’t have any cavity causing bacteria when they are born. Blowing on the food, of kissing them on the lips, tend to spread the bacteria from our mouth to their’s. So, it should be completely avoided.

Taking care of our kid’s oral and dental health is not very complicated. Only time and knowledge is required for the same. One important factor that can still cause cavities despite the best effort is GENETICS. It plays a very important role but this also can be managed by having a proper visit to a dentist and getting the problem treated early to avoid any delayed consequences.

So, as a parent it becomes our duty to take care of our child’s oral health the same way we take care of his or her general health.

Happy Parenting!

Early Childhood Caries (ECC) – What is it and how to prevent it?

Early childhood caries, also formally known as baby bottle tooth decay or nursing bottle caries is one of the most common type of tooth decay seen in infants and toddlers. It is most commonly seen preventable disease in children younger than the age of 6 years.

What is Early Childhood Caries?

Any cavity, of any tooth in any child, younger than 6 years of age is know as Early Childhood Caries.

Severe Early Childhood Caries (S-ECC) is any cavity on the smooth surface of the tooth of a child who is younger than 3 years of age.

So, any tooth that has a cavity in it, in a child less than 6 years of age can be considered under the early childhood caries and parents need to take care to take preventive measure to stop the spread to the other teeth.

But the question is…

Why does the ECC Occur?

There are a number of factors which lead to ECC and parents play an important role in preventing it to occur. As soon as the child’s tooth erupts it is susceptible to decay. So, it is our duty to do our best to take care of these tiny teeth.

  • The main reason for the decay of kids teeth at such an early age is the night feeds, especially the bottle feed. A child should never go to sleep with a bottle in the mouth containing anything other than water. Any juice or milk in the bottle can lead to formation of a layer over the teeth which acts as the main source of bacteria to accumulate and cause the decay.
  • The milk teeth i.e. the primary teeth are as important as adult teeth. So, brushing of teeth should start as soon as the first tooth erupts in the mouth of your baby. In fact, the cleaning of babies gums and teeth should start immediately after birth using a clean cotton cloth or a gauze piece wrapped around the finger.
  • The first dental visit of a child should be at the child’s first birthday or, within 6 months of the eruption of the first tooth. In case there is any problem, the dentist will let you know and you can take care further on according to the advise.

Never blow on your child’s food, as the bacteria from your mouth can be transferred to your child’s mouth and these bacteria are responsible for the decay of teeth.

How can ECC be prevented?

Early childhood caries can be prevented by taking care of a number of factors.

  • Never Let your Child sleep with a bottle in the mouth: First and foremost is not to let your child sleep with a bottle filled with juice, milk or any other sweetened liquid. This reduces the chance of ECC tremendously.
  • Brushing of Teeth: Start brushing your child’s teeth as soon as the first tooth erupts in the mouth. Brushing can be started using a normal silicone finger brush and slowly can shift to a kids age appropriate tooth brush.
    The American Academy of Pediatric dentistry recommends, that the brushing of kids teeth should be done with a grain size of fluoridated toothpaste as soon as the first tooth erupts in the oral cavity.

A grain size of tooth paste should be used till the age of 3 years and a pea size after the age of 3 years.

You can click the link below and know the exciting ways to help your child start brushing his or her teeth.

https://dentistmaa.com/2020/11/10-exciting-ways-to-get-your-toddler-to-brush-their-teeth/

The most important and the best way to help your brush teeth by starting early.

  • First Dental Visit: The first dental visit of your child should be at his or her first birthday or, within the first 6 months of the eruption of the first tooth.
    An annual dental check up is important to prevent any tooth decay or any other problem that might be present. Something that is caught early can be treated better.
    In case your child has even a single cavity and is diagnosed by your dentist and treated, it can help in further preventing the spread of infection. May be a normal filling (or restoration) will suffice if consulted early and your child is saved from a slightly intensive procedure like a root canal.

To read more about the first dental visit (which should be mandatory), cick the link below.

https://dentistmaa.com/2020/09/first-dental-visit-when-should-it-be/
  • Sharing of Food: Never share food with your child or blow on your child’s food to warm it. This leads to transfer of bacteria from your mouth to your child’s mouth which is the cause of cavities.

How can ECC be Treated?

It is not uncommon to see kids with early childhood caries. May be the reason is lack of awareness among the parents, and an old thinking that the primary teeth i.e. the milk teeth are not very important as they will eventually be replaced by permanent teeth. Actually, milk teeth are as important as the permanent teeth are and also form a path for the eruption of the permanent.

https://dentistmaa.com/2020/09/milk-teeth-more-important-than-you-think-they-are/

Once the cavity or cavities occur, they can be treated by either a general dentist or a pedodontist. If your toddler is having multiple cavities and is unco-operative, the best thing to do is visit a Pedodontist as they are specialist in dealing with the kids dental care, and know very well how to make the kid co-operate and get the treatment done.

The cavities can be filled if they are not very deep and in case deep i.e. approaching the pulp (the center part of the tooth which has all the nerves and blood vessels) a root canal treatment can be done.

If there is just a few cavities the treatment can be done under local anesthesia, if there are more or the full mouth is involved the the treatment might need to be done either under conscious sedation or general anesthesia.

If required a simple fluoride application or pit and fissure sealant can be done to prevent any cavities from forming.

In order to prevent our children from going through so much trouble, it is our duty to take care of their dental health as well, the same way as we keep a good check on their overall health.

Aren’t we always up to date about the vaccination schedule of our child ? Or, if they have a slightest of cold aren’t we worried and visiting a pediatrician stat? Then why not worrying about a cavity they have?? It is as important as any other slightest of health issue your child might have.

Happy Parenting!

10 Exciting ways to get your toddler to brush their teeth!!

Brushing teeth is one of the most important and healthy habit that parents can instill in their children. It sometimes is a struggle and sometimes seems just impossible to make your child brush without any tantrums. But, actually we can make it fun and exciting for them, so that they voluntarily ask you to brush their teeth leaving behind all the drama.

So lets look into 10 ways you can help your toddler get in the habit of brushing their teeth regularly.

1. Start Early

Brushing of babies teeth, according to the American Dental Association should start as soon as the babies first tooth erupts in the mouth. Infact, cleaning of the babies gum pads and the tongue should start after birth after the baby takes feed. This helps in developing a habit and the baby gets use to it the way we carry out the other routine activities like taking a bath or combing our hair. So, the earlier we start the better it is. A silicone finger brush can be used initially and later can be shifted to a normal kids age appropriate toothbrush.

https://amzn.to/3fxueGT

2. Make brushing a game

Kids do not understand the importance of brushing, so they will find it boring and something they will not want to do. Make it a game. Make a story about the sugar monsters that might come and attack the teeth if we do not brush them away using our sword i.e. our toothbrush and toothpaste and drive them away and not let them eat off our tooth which is prince or the princess. Let them get involved in the story and make it more interesting, by making some “dishum dishum” sounds. they will love it, laugh along with you and will be ready to brush twice a day as you want.

3. Let them brush your teeth

Let them brush your teeth. It might get a little messy, but they will enjoy it and then atleast let you brush their teeth in return. They will understand that brushing is important not only for them, but even for you, and might not take it as a punishment or something that they have been forced to do. It will give them a sense of satisfaction.

4. Make it a family time

A family that brushes together stays together. Make it a family time. It will help in spending more time together, along with forming a good habit for your child and also letting your child know how important it is to brush his or her teeth in order to stay healthy. They might be looking forward to this time of the day.

5. Let them choose their own toothbrush

The tools should be right. Let them choose their own brush. Take them shopping and show them all the colors and the designs of the brush they can choose them from. But make sure the size of the brush is age appropriate in order to provide proper cleaning of the teeth and other parts of the oral cavity.

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6. Sing to your baby while brushing

You can sing to your baby while brushing to make the experience more interesting and playful. You can sing any song your child likes, or any brushing song or for that matter just make up a song and sing and keep it for just the brushing time. This will make the baby again more interested in brushing. Personally I just sang “zum zum zum, zum zum zum” to my baby when she was an year old and she was caught up in that alone.

7. Set a good example infront of your child

Parents should set a good example of brushing their own teeth twice a day daily, infront of their children so that they understand it is something they should never miss. Make it a point that your child is aware that you are following the routine without skipping a day.

8. Pretend play Dentist

Pretend playing dentist with your child. This will first let them know who dentists are and secondly they will understand why we need to go to a dentist. Tell them besides the routine dental visit a dentist will help fill any cavities that there might be in the teeth. Also make them understand that the cavities will occur incase we do not brush our teeth properly.

9. Toothpaste is important

The toothpaste you are using is important. May be the child is not liking the taste of the toothpaste you are using, so, try changing the toothpaste, but make sure it is a kids age appropriate toothpaste.

Another reason can be that you are using a wrong amount of toothpaste and your child is finding it difficult to brush with it. The right amount of toothpaste to be used is a grain size for a kid younger than the age of 3 years and a pea size for a kid above the age of 3 years.

https://amzn.to/37mc3AD

10. Give them rewards

Let them enjoy some incentives. This will make it more fun for them. Make a chart week wise and you can put a surprise sticker on it whenever they brush. and once the chart is full, you can give them a bigger gift like a toy at the end of the month. Remember not to give rewards like candies or chocolates as they are cariogenic and should be avoided.

Make your child agree to something that he or she doesn’t like is a trick. We as parents need to find out which technique works the best with our kid. According to my personal experience the best thing that works for developing habits like brushing, potty training or anything for that matter is starting early. The earlier we start the better the kid accepts it, that it is a routine and nothing that is forced on them. It is taken as something very normal like drinking milk when hungry. But as a parent it is you who needs to decide how to get your child into the habit.

Happy Parenting!

The 7 important thing you need to know about your baby’s teething!

Teething is one of the most important milestones your child will achieve. The cute smile of your baby will be more cuter with small teeth coming in. But teething is a challenge for some babies as well as the parents.While some kids have to deal with a lot during teething, some don’t even get to know and get almost all their teeth. There are few things you as a parent should know about your child’s teething.

1. Teething is a natural process

Teething is a natural process which starts anywhere between the age of 3 months to 18 months, and it doesn’t require any medicine. So, it is better to avoid any type of homeopathic teething tablets which someone advices you, as according to the FDA they are not safe for kids under the age of 2 years. These contain a harmful chemical belladonna which can cause complications. Also certain teething gels are harmful as they contain benzocaine which again is not advices for kids under the age of 2 years. They don’t cause any relief in the pain or discomfort in your child. So why put your child at risk?

2. Pain relief during teething

Teething causes a lot of irritation in the gums for certain children. They become cranky and keep drooling and putting everything in mouth. To reduce to the maximum possible extend,massage the gums with a clean cold cotton cloth wrapped around your finger or a gauze piece. Also you can keep a properly washed silicone teether in the fridge ( not the freezer) for about hour and give it to your child to chew. Incase you suddenly found out your child is teething and you do not have a teether yet, you can just cool a stainless steel spoon and give your child the blunt side to chew on but ofcourse only under supervision. Be very careful while buying teethers. Avoid plastic and better go for a silicone based teethers and also avoid teethers with liquid inside. Avoid anything that can break and go inside your child’s mouth.

Incase of severe pain and discomfort a pain killer once in a while wouldn’t hurt for a good night sleep both for the child and the parents. So you can just call your pediatrician and get a prescription for the same.

3. Loss of appetite during teething

Loss of appetite is a common symptom of teething and there is nothing to worry about if your child is eating less or preferring only a certain type of food. Do not force feed your child at all, as it will even cause him or her to eat less. The symptom will go away slowly in a few days and your child will start eating again.

4. Fever and diarrhoea

Teething causes only one degree rise in temperature in kids and any high grade fever which is present should be addressed immediately and you should visit your pediatrician.

During teething kids tend to put everything in mouth which causes stomach infection and therefore diarrhoea. The best is to maintain a very good hygiene by cleaning the babies surrounding and frequently washing babies hands. A pediatrician should be consulted immediately if your child is having diarrhoea.

5. Teething sequence

The lower front teeth ( lower central incisors ) are the first tooth to erupt in the mouth. But the sequence might change in some kids and still there is nothing to worry about.

6. When to start brushing?

Brushing of a kids teeth should start as soon as the first tooth erupts and the cleaning of the gums and tongue should start at birth. A silicone finger brain can be used and then slowly cn shift to a normal kids age appropriate tooth paste.

Starting brushing early helps in maintaining good oral hygiene, prevent cavities and also helps in inculcating good oral habits in your child.

7. When to visit a pediatrician/pedodontist?

A pediatrician should be consulted when
a. Your child is having a high grade fever ( as it is not a symptom of teething)
b. Your child is having loose motions or vomiting
c. There are no other symptoms of teething but still your child has not been eating from a few days now
d. The gums are not pink but blue and swollen
e. Rashes on the babies bodies

So, as a parent sometimes it becomes a task for us to deal with the irritability of our little ones. But we should keep in mind that they are not actually feeling well, though nothing wrong might be visible, and this is new for them. Many of us might have experienced the discomfort we have while getting our wisdom teeth (third molars). It is the same for them. So, cuddle with them, play, listen and understand and give them what they need to get out of this difficult stage with love and care.

Happy Parenting!

Milk teeth… More important than you think they are!!

Awareness about the kids teeth or the milk teeth or the primary teeth (as we dentist call them) is not much among the parents.

These are just milk teeth and will fall off eventually, is what we dentist hear routinely in our practice.

But is this really the case?? Well actually these teeth are going to fall off one fine day, but the most important point here is should we save them or preserve them till the time they are still their in our kids mouth? The answer is YES.

The milk teeth or the primary teeth are as important as the permanent teeth. They serve many purposes the same way the permanent teeth do. The milk teeth start falling and the permanent teeth start coming at around the age of 6-7 years, and the complete set of the permanent teeth erupt by the age of around 12 years (except the wisdom teeth). So, we need to preserve the milk teeth for approximately a decade or even more which is the major part of our children’s childhood.

The primary teeth serves many purposes for the child, that should not be ignored.

Helping in Speech: The eruption of teeth and kids learning words and how to speak go almost parallel to each other. The teeth definitely play a very important role in speech. Learning to talk is also important for the social development and the cognitive skills. So, if the teeth are decayed and finally are missing (especially the babies front upper and lower teeth) there will be some difficulty in pronouncing certain words. This might lead to loss of confidence among the peers as your child might find difficult to pronounce certain words. e.g. the “th” sound at the end of “tooth” is difficult to pronounce if you don’t have the front two teeth.

Health and Nutrition: The way to food is through the mouth, and to chew that food teeth are required. So, if there is a loss of teeth due to nursing bottle caries or normal decay in the teeth, your child will find it difficult to chew the food, either because of the pain or due to the absence of teeth it would just be difficult to chew in that area. This further would lead to loss of interest in food, weight loss and weakness. So, healthy teeth are the way to good health and nutrition of our kids.

Self Confidence: A smile is the first thing we see in a person, and what if the smile either doesn’t have teeth or has carious teeth. The confidence level of a child goes down when he or she is mocked by his or her friends for having an unpleasant smile. It reduces the child’s self confidence. And with bullying becoming more prevalent in schools these days, child can get bullied for as simple thing as his or her teeth. So, the parents can help prevent that by making sure the teeth are healthy and in good shape.

Pain and Discomfort: If the cavities in the milk teeth are not taken care of when they are in the initial stages, it might lead to pain and infection which can be severe and also sometimes fatal. This pain will lead to more dentist appointments, painful treatments, missed school, parents missing the work and taking kids for appointments. So, it would be better to take kids for a routine dental check up at least once in 6 months and get any treatment that might be required at that stage and prevent the hassle of the lengthy, time consuming procedures the child might find uncomfortable to sit for.

Alignment of Permanent teeth: The alignment of the permanent teeth depend almost completely on the primary teeth. The primary teeth basically act as the space maintainers for the permanent teeth to come at the right place. If lost early, they are unable to give room to the permanent teeth leading to so called the crooked smile by drifting and tipping of the permanent teeth, which will then need an orthodontic (braces) treatment to correct it. So the best way to avoid this is to preserve the milk teeth for the permanent teeth to erupt in their right place.

Spread of Infection: An untreated primary teeth might lead to the spread of infection till the permanent teeth which lie very close to their roots. This might lead to the infection or morphological alterations in the tooth germ of the permanent teeth.

To sum up, the primary teeth play a very crucial role in the development of kids both mentally and physically, and as parents it is our duty to make sure our kids are getting proper dental care.

Happy Parenting!

First Dental Visit.. When should it be??

We are always in a denial phase when it comes to something we are scared of. But wouldn’t it help more if we can face it and get over with it??

I think Yes.

According to certain studies done, 1 out of every 4 kids is effected by at least 1 cavity by the age of 4 years. This one cavity can be prevented by a normal routine dental checkup which can be done once every 6 months. It might help in detecting any cavity in the initial stage itself and preventing it from decaying the tooth any further.

But how many of us do so. Rarely any. And the reason is we are not aware that the dental hygiene is also important and like the vaccination appointments, and so we should visit a dentist routinely.

So, the first dental visit for your child should be at his or her first birthday. let that be a birthday gift, helping maintain a good oral hygiene.

As it is said, “Oral health leads to overall health”.

Pedodontists (many people are not aware of) are the experts for the kids that age, they are also know as the kids dentist. So as we all have one pediatrician fixed for our kids whom we visit routinely for vaccinations, so should we visit our pedodontist, to be aware of any cavity or any other problem which might be there and can be treated early.

Here I would again quote a saying, “Dentistry is not expensive, neglect is”. Anything caught early will cost less for treatment in dentistry rather than something found once the pain starts. So, it is better to maintain a habit of having a routine dental check up not only for our kids, but for ourselves too.

How should you prepare your child for the dental appointment?

* Take a morning appointment or the time of the day your child is the most active.
*If your child is a little older and it is his or her first dental visit, explain about it and tell why it is important.
*You can take your younger child for the appointment of the elder one. This will help in a positive reinforcement.
*Make the appointment exciting by telling that it would be a pleasant experience and will help in maintaining a good oral hygiene.
*Play dentist with your child prior to the appointment so that it seems a little familiar.

How should you prepare yourself for your child’s first dental appointment?

*Just think it to be a routine dental visit and there is absolutely nothing to panic about.
*As you prepare yourself for an appointment with your child’s pediatrician, the same way you can write down the questions you need to ask your pedodontist.
*In case your child has any medical history, remember to share it with your pedodontist.
*In case you have a dental fear or anxiety yourself, it would be nice to not show those feeling in front of your child instead make him or her comfortable about the appointment.

The first appointments are not usually long and do not include painful procedures, unless and until it is required to relive the pain the child might be suffering from. So, the child should be comfortable and the dentist almost always tries to make a friendly relationship with the kid, so as whenever required, the child is ready to get the treatment done without any hesitation. So, as parents, it is our responsibility, to take our kids for a routine dental check up in in build in them a habit of maintaining a good oral hygiene, and raise them to be responsible adults.

Happy Parenting!!

Brushing your as well as your kids teeth… a Luxury or a necessity??

The most important thing after a good morning kiss is brushing your as well as your kids teeth. It is surely not a luxury, but is necessary to keep the teeth healthy. Especially for the little human who will find it difficult to sit on the dental chair to get any kind of treatment whatever might be required, if a good oral hygiene is not maintained.

So it is better to avoid it as much as we we can.

When should the brushing of teeth start for kids??

This is the most important question I have been asked many times. So the answer for this is, as soon as the first tooth erupts in the mouth. Do not delay. The first tooth requires cleaning as much as the rest of them will. Starting to brush early will not only keep the mouth clean but also inculcate the habit of brushing in your kid. The cleaning of babies gums and tongue should start at birth. A clean cotton cloth can be used wrapped around the finger.

Which toothpaste should I use for my kid?? Or should I use a toothpaste for my kid??

There are different studies stating if you can use a toothpaste for your toddler or not.
The first thing the studies suggest is to avoid toothpaste till the age of 2 years, or till your child doesn’t know how to spit.
The second thing few studies suggest is that you can start using a grain size of toothpaste from the time your child has the first tooth till 3 years of age and pea size after the age of 3 years. Meanwhile teach your child how to spit.
As a mother of a 2 year old I would say take it slow.. ask your child everyday while brushing can I put a little toothpaste on your brush too? And eventually one day they will say yes and slowly it will become a habit.
Fluoridated toothpaste are important to fight against cavities, so it preferred to use a smear of kids fluoridated toothpaste.

How should I start brushing my kids teeth as he or she doesn’t allow me to do so??

Make it a game, a fun and a family time. Brush along with your child. Let your child brush your teeth. This will create interest as well as let your child learn that it is an important thing to do.
Show your child videos of kids brushing their teeth.
You can pretend play dentist with your kid.

How should I clean my toddlers tongue?

You can clean the tongue with either a kids tongue cleaner or the brush itself. Make it a routine as this the place we miss brushing or forget brushing. The organisms harbor there causing halitosis (Bad smell) from mouth. So do not ignore this important organ.

Should I let my kid brush his or her own teeth??

The answer is NO. Not till the age of 5-6 years. Kids lack dexterity and it takes time to develop, so they miss out on a lot of surfaces where the food gets deposited. This leads to cavities. To prevent this it is the best to brush your kids teeth yourself. They might insist on brushing themselves, but its our duty as parent to not let them do so.

Not just our kids but we too need to brush regularly, twice a day. Being a mom sometimes we miss on taking proper care of ourselves, but we should remember our kids will be fine only if we are fine. Ignoring our self will lead to further problems and will lead to even less attention and time we can give our angels.

Happy Brushing!! 😀