February 19, 2020

The British Society of Paediatric Dentistry launched ‘The Dental Check by One’ campaign back in 2017.  It has had a really positive impact with studies showing that there had already been an improvement in the number of 0-2 year olds accessing dental care by the end of 2018.

All of us at St James Dental are hugely passionate about supporting this campaign! We would urge anyone who knows of families with young babies to make them aware that bringing them to the dentist as early as possible (from when their first teeth appear or at least before their 1st birthday) holds a host of benefits for both their oral and overall health, including:

  • Allowing children to become used to the dental environment so they feel comfortable coming to see us at every visit.
  • Advice regarding how to cope with a teething baby and what to expect.
  • Dietary advice which can be tailored to every stage, baby, toddler and the tricky hurdles that come when they start school and you are less in control. See below for some great dental specific weaning tips!
  • Allows for early detection of any dental developmental issues which in turn leads to fast, effective management.
  • Early messages regarding oral health – children are sponges! The more information we give them the more they absorb! With positive reinforcement from a young age, the message will really start to stick making your job as parents much easier!
  • We can teach the correct brushing techniques and habits from the start, this prevents having to break bad ones further down the line!

At St. James Dental we provide a full range of dental care for children free of charge on the National Health Service, this covers children up to the age of 18 or aged 18 if they remain in full time education. We are currently accepting all new patient registrations for NHS child patients.

Weaning tips from a dental perspective

With the amount of information out there on weaning and healthy food it can seem more than overwhelming! We wanted to give you a summary of the important key messages when it comes to what you give your little one to eat and drink and keeping their teeth healthy.

  • Avoid anything with added sugar until at least aged 2+.
  • Be careful with vitamins, supplements and medications, there is almost always a sugar free option available!
  • Avoid giving your child fruit juices, cordials or squashes and of course fizzy drinks!
  • Don’t let them sleep with a bottle as the tendency to suck from it during the night can lead to decay.
  • Switch from the bottle to a beaker and as baby is ready to an open cup, this prevents prolonged comfort sucking.
  • Current NHS advice is that you should stop using a dummy between 9 -12 months of age, overuse will start to impact dental and oral development as well as having the potential to affect speech.
  • Make sure you start brushing their teeth twice a day as soon as the first one comes through. They are never too young to develop decay and we can prevent it. Use an age appropriate toothbrush with just a smear of age appropriate toothpaste.

If you would like any further advice or have any questions regarding the information provided in this post, please do not hesitate to book an appointment with one the of the St. James Dental Team, we are here to help!