Gary Sabbadini, DDS Blog

Posts for: October, 2015

More than 40% of children have cavities by the time they reach kindergarten.  In fact, The CDC reports that tooth decay is the most common preventable disease in children and while the cavity rate in children of older age groups has been slowly declining, the rise in cavities among those under 5 is actually increasing. Unfortunately parents often wait too long to begin a routine of oral care and to start caring for emerging teeth.  Here are five essential tips to get your child started on the right path:

1. Make oral care a part of a daily routine.

Getting into a daily habit of taking care of your child’s mouth as soon as possible will increase the likely-hood that you (and eventually your child) will keep up this healthy practice once teeth appear.

2. Use a washcloth to clean your child’s mouth before teeth arrive.

While using a brush isn’t advisable on infant gums and toothpaste isn’t needed before teeth emerge, using a soft wet washcloth gently wiped over gums twice a day is a great way to begin a regular oral routine for your child. This will help to keep bacteria at bay and will also keep your child’s gums healthy.

3. As teeth arrive, use the correct toothbrush.

When the first teeth start to show up (usually around 6 months, but this can vary greatly from child to child), use a toothbrush specifically designed for babies. These brushes have smaller heads for smaller mouths and very soft bristles to avoid damaging sensitive gums. Brush your child’s teeth until he or she is able to brush properly themselves.  You will also want to pay close attention to the type of toothpaste you choose.  Use only a “smear” for very young children and a pea sized amount of toothpaste as they grow older.  Young children have trouble not swallowing toothpaste, so keep the amount minimal and consider using fluoride free toothpaste until your child has learned not to swallow when brushing.

4. Know what tooth decay looks like.

Be aware of the signs of baby tooth decay (spots or pits on teeth) and stay up to date on dental exams.

5. Establish a dental home.

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends establishing a “dental home” by age one or when the first tooth appears, whichever occurs first. A dental home is a practice that you and your child are familiar with and have established a relationship with the dentist. Finding a practice that you trust early in your child’s life will allow the dentist to catch potential issues before they become bigger problems.

We would love to be your child’s dental home!  Call us for an appointment today!

October 25, 2015
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October 25, 2015











Because babies’ teeth don’t appear until around six to eight months of age, it’s a natural misconception that they don’t need dental care. But the steps you take as the parent of an infant can help your baby maintain good oral health and develop healthy dental habits in the future.

It’s easy to take care of a baby’s teeth and gums, especially when oral hygiene for your infant becomes part of the normal daily routine. Learn more about how you can promote good dental health for your baby with these tips and considerations.

Taking Care of Baby’s Oral Hygiene

  • Dental Hygiene for Birth to Six Months. Cleaning your infant’s gums is as important as cleaning teeth will be later. Hold your baby in your arms, and with a clean, moistened washcloth wrapped around your index finger, gently massage his or her gums.
  • Dental Hygiene for Six to 12 Months. After teeth begin to appear, it’s time to switch to a soft, children’s toothbrush for teeth cleaning. New research has shown that fluoride toothpaste is safe and recommended for use once your baby’s first tooth arrives. Gently brush your baby’s teeth after each feeding, in the morning, and before bedtime, just as you did before teeth appeared.
  • Good Bedtime Habits. One of the most important things you can do to protect your infant from tooth decay is to avoid the habit of putting baby to bed with a bottle. Use other soothing bedtime activities, such as rocking and lullabies, to help your baby drift off to sleep.
  • A Note about Dental Decay. Many people are unaware that dental decay is transmissible. Avoid placing your baby’s bottle, sippy cup, or pacifier in your own mouth to test the temperature. Likewise, don’t share utensils with your baby.

Partner With Your Dentist

Your baby should receive his or her first dental health checkup by the age of six months. Even though your infant may not have teeth yet, Dr. Sabbadini can assess the risk your baby might face for oral diseases that affect hard or soft tissues. Dr. Sabbadini can also provide you with instructions for infant oral hygiene, and explain what steps to add as your baby grows and develops.

We are your partner for good oral health, and we’re here to make caring for your baby’s dental hygiene and health easier and more enjoyable for you.