18 Months to 4 Years
As your child enters into the toddler years, it's important to develop healthy eating habits. The following tips will help parents and caregivers continue their child down the path of good oral health.
- Brush your child's teeth and gums thoroughly at least once a day, using less than a pea-sized amount of fluoridated toothpaste.
- Help your child develop healthy nutritional habits by avoiding sugary snacks, cereals, sodas and juices. Remember, milk and water are the best drink choices.
- Begin flossing between your child's teeth when molars (back teeth) begin touching each other.
- Wean toddlers off of pacifiers by age 24-28 months.
- If thumb sucking continues after age three, it should be discussed with the child's dentist.
- Talk to your dentist about fluoride varnishes and dental sealants. Fluoride varnishes strengthen developing teeth and help fight decay. Sealants “seal out” food and plaque from the tiny grooves and crevices in teeth, further reducing the risk of decay during your child's most cavity-prone years.
Jody Cleary, Director of Membership & Financial Services