Pregnancy and Children Dental Care

Children DentistryThe key to a child's good dental health begins before his or her teeth become visible. Here are some answers to some of the most frequently asked dental health questions relating to pregnancy, infants, toddlers and children. 

  1. Does being pregnant affect my oral health? Yes... hormonal changes exaggerate the way gum tissues react to the irritants in plaque. Thorough brushing and flossing of your teeth twice daily to remove the plaque and eating a balanced diet will help to keep your gums healthy. 
     
  2. Should I continue my regular dental checkups during my pregnancy? Yes... you should continue regular dental visits. However, it is very important to let Dr. Nishizaka know that you are pregnant. 
     
  3. Are x-rays safe during pregnancy? Yes. With proper lead shielding, dental x-rays are safe during pregnancy.  As a precaution, Dr. Nishizaka will only recommend x-rays that are of extreme necessity (toothache, infection, etc.) and delay routine ones until after pregnancy. 
     
  4. When will my infant begin to get teeth? Tooth eruption varies from infant to infant. However, most infants will start to get teeth around six to 12 months of age. 
     
  5. When should I begin to brush my infant's teeth? Starting at birth, clean your infant's gums with a soft infant toothbrush, cotton gauze, or cloth and cool water. 
     
  6. How much fluoridated toothpaste should I use when brushing my child's teeth? Beginning at 2 years of age, a small pea-sized amount of fluoridated toothpaste should be used during brushing. Children should be encouraged to spit, not swallow, toothpaste, and the amount of toothpaste used can be increased after five or six years of age when the child can reliably do this. 
     
  7. When should I take my baby in for his/her first dental visit? The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry and most other health organizations encourage parents and care providers to schedule an appointment when your child's first tooth erupts, usually between six and twelve months of age. 
     
  8. How can I prevent my infant from getting early decay, know as early childhood caries or baby bottle tooth decay? When placing your infant down to sleep (nap or nighttime), do not have them fall asleep with a bottle in their mouth. Sugary liquids like formula, breast milk, juice and soda can pool around the infant's teeth and cause decay. Don't forget to clean or brush your infant’s gums/teeth twice daily to remove food and plaque.