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Dr. B’s and Dr. McD’s Dental Do’s & Don’ts

In the interest of your oral health, refer to our do’s and don’ts below:

Infants

Do: Start brushing gums in front of mouth very gently at about 4 months of age, with no toothpaste. You can use a very soft toothbrush or the corner of a wash cloth.


Don't: Put child to bed with a bottle of anything except for water. Any juice or milk at bedtime after brushing teeth will lead to devastating cavities. These “bottle cavities” can lead to the need to fill or even remove multiple teeth.


Do: Call the dentist if you have any concerns.

Don't: Assume that a cavity doesn't matter because it's in a baby tooth. These teeth are the spacers for the developing permanent teeth. Premature loss of these teeth can lead to the need for expensive braces later. Also, cavities and abscesses in primary teeth cause just as much pain and potential medical risk as in adult teeth.


Do: Bring your child in for their first checkup at about 1 year old.


Don't: Delay your child's first checkup until there is a problem. Delaying dental checkups until a problem arises may result in emergency treatment at their first visit. This can lead to lifelong fear of the dental office.


Do: If your child starts thumb-sucking, substitute a soother. Thumb-sucking can develop into a habit that lasts for many years, and may result in the need for expensive orthodontic treatment. On the other hand, children almost always give up soothers quite early.


Children

Do: Brush and floss your child's teeth every evening before bed. Also brush their teeth in the morning after breakfast


Don't: Send the child off to brush and floss on their own. They don't yet have the skills and coordination to do this effectively. Direct adult participation is the only way.


Do: Encourage healthy snacks. It will have health benefits now and throughout life.


Don't: Allow sugary foods they promote cavities. They also lead to obesity, diabetes, and other health problems, and it leads to children developing a taste for sweets.


Do: Ask your dentist about a dental mouth guard if your child is engaged in sports.


Don’t: Allow participation in sports such as hockey and basketball without a custom mouth guard. This essential piece of protective equipment helps prevent dental injuries and concussions.


Do: Have your child's permanent molars sealed. Cavities in the grooves of permanent molars are very common. Sealants are a simple comfortable way to prevent these teeth from needing fillings.


Adults

Do: Keep your dental checkups and cleanings at the prescribed intervals. Each patient's dental health status is unique. We choose these intervals to suit the individual patient's needs.


Don't: Chew on ice - It cracks teeth.


Do: Brush, floss, and carry out other home care techniques as prescribed. We suggest home care measures on an individual as needed basis. Our ancestors lost their teeth due to gum disease and cavities. We don't want that to happen to you!


Don't: Chew fingernails or objects- it breaks front teeth.


Do: If you have a night guard, please use it every night. People who grind or clench crack teeth. Your night guard helps protect them against fractures.


Don't: Chew on hard candy - It causes cavities and cracks teeth.


Do: If you are engaged in sports, a custom mouth guard may help to protect you against fractures and concussions


Don't: Use your teeth as a tool. Tearing open packages breaks teeth!


Do: Brush well (for at least two minutes) two to three times daily.


Don't: Go to bed without brushing and flossing. It takes less than five minutes to do both.

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