So, your child’s teeth just started to come in. We know that this can be an exciting milestone for parents. Of course, this also means considering your child’s oral health. Just as you brush and floss your teeth every day, you will now need to begin brushing your child’s teeth. While the techniques and practices will be a bit different and probably less time-consuming (seeing as your child probably only has one or two teeth at the moment), here are some tips for how to brush your child’s teeth properly,
- Even before your child’s teeth start to erupt it’s important to keep their gums healthy and clean by wiping them with a soft, damp cloth after each feeding and right before bedtime. Your child will get their first tooth between 6-14 months.
- Yes, even children’s teeth can develop decay. As soon as the tooth is formed it can develop decay, so it’s important that you start brushing it as soon as you see it.
- Purchase a child-sized toothbrush from your local drugstore and wet the soft-bristled toothbrush with water to brush your child’s tooth or teeth (at this point you don’t need toothpaste).
- Your child won’t start needing toothpaste until they are 2 years old. From 2-3 years old your child only needs toothpaste the size of a grain of rice in order to clean their teeth. After 3 years old, you can upgrade to a pea-sized amount of toothpaste.
- Just as you do for your own teeth, you should also brush your child’s teeth twice a day (once in the morning and again at night right before going to bed).
- Use soft, circular motions when brushing the teeth and the gums. Again, just as you do your own teeth, you should brush for a minimum of two minutes. Don’t forget to brush their tongue and roof of their mouth, too.
- We know that your child may not fully understand the brushing process, so it’s a good idea to tell them what you are doing and the importance of brushing their teeth. Even though they can’t brush their own teeth yet it’s still great to show them how to brush so that when it’s time to start brushing their own teeth they understand how to do it.
- Most children can start brushing their teeth around 7-8 years old, but still need to be supervised by an adult until around 10-11 years old.
Have questions about caring for your baby’s developing smile? Keeping your child’s smile healthy is so important for their development and practicing good oral hygiene at home will ensure that your child’s smile stays healthy.
- At birth: this is performed right away on your child, as part of the newborn physical assessment.
- 6 months: your pediatrician evaluates your child’s eyes at their regular appointment.
- 3.5 years old: at your child’s appointment, the pediatrician tests their eyes and also their visual acuity.
- 5 years old: a standard assessment performed at a pediatric appointment.
How your pediatricians in Jacksonville, FL, can help if your child has ADHD
You want the best for your child, and that includes doing well in school. If your child is having trouble paying attention, it could be a sign of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, commonly called ADHD, a condition that can lead to problems even when your child becomes an adult.
Fortunately, your pediatrician can help diagnose and treat ADHD. The pediatricians at Jacksonville Kids Pediatrics in Jacksonville, FL, offer a wide range of pediatric services, including treatment for this condition.
So, how can you tell if your child might be suffering from ADHD? There are a few signs and symptoms for you to look for, including:
- Squirming, fidgeting, or hand/foot-tapping
- Inability to remain seated for extended periods
- Running, climbing, or other activity at inappropriate times
- Blurting out answers to questions and excessive talking
- Difficulty or inability to focus on details/follow directions
- Poor organizational skills
- Frequently losing items
- Frequently distracted or forgetful
The bottom line is, the main characteristics of ADHD are inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity, according to the Child Development Institute.
Undiagnosed and untreated ADHD can have serious consequences which can affect your child’s ability to learn and function well later in life. These are just a few of the consequences your child may experience:
- Poor grades
- Bad behaviors
- Difficulty keeping friends
- Belligerent, aggressive behaviors
- Mood swings, depression, and frustration
- Emotional growth issues
- Problems sleeping
ADHD is a developmental condition, and it can be managed and treated using a combination of different therapies. Your pediatrician may recommend:
- Behavioral therapy, with both child and parent, to focus on minimizing inappropriate, destructive behaviors.
- Lifestyle modifications, which may include dietary restrictions on sugar intake, as well as increasing vitamins, nutrients, and exercise.
- Medication therapy, using medications that will improve brain function and increase focus.
You want the best for your child, and that’s important, especially if you think that your child may have ADHD. To learn more about the signs, symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment of ADHD, talk with the experts. Call the pediatricians of Jacksonville Kids Pediatrics in Jacksonville, FL, at (904) 446-9991. Call now!
- Your child doesn’t keep or make eye contact
- They don’t respond to your facial expressions or smiles
- Does not reciprocate facial expressions or have the appropriate ones
- Doesn’t respond to parent’s pointing
- Has problems making friends
- Shows a lack of concern for others
- Your child hasn’t spoken by 16 months
- Repeats or parrots what others say
- Doesn’t feel the need or want to communicate
- Starts missing language and social milestones after 15 months
- Doesn’t pretend play but does have a good memory for numbers, songs, and letters
- Has an affinity for routines and schedules and does not like altering them
- Likes to twirl their fingers, sway, rock, or spin
- Has strange activities that they enjoy doing repeatedly
- They are sensitive to sounds, lights, touch, textures, and smells
- They are more interested in the parts of a toy instead of the whole thing
- Sore throat
- Noticeably bigger tonsils
- Pain or problems with swallowing
- Yellow or white patches coating the throat and tonsils
- Swollen lymph nodes in the neck
- Foul breath
- Stiff neck
- A scratchy or rough voice
- Stomach pain
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