Brushing, flossing, eating nutritious food and paying regular visits to the dentist are all important in keeping your child’s teeth healthy and strong. However, even with great care and professional attention, your child’s teeth can be harmed if she has bad habits. What are these habits? Corona kids’ dentists list some of these bad habits that you need to help your child overcome.

oral care bad habitsNot visiting the dentist

Ideally, your child should see a dentist within six months after his first tooth has erupted or, at the very least, before she turns a year old. The dentist will check for problems related to her teeth and gums and give you proper instruction on how to take care of your young one’s teeth.

Late night breastfeeding

After your child’s first set of teeth have come out, you should avoid breastfeeding her late at night. The lactose in breast milk contains sugar that, when left in the mouth overnight, can contribute to tooth decay. If you must feed your baby in the middle of the night, make sure to wipe away the excess milk after each feeding.

Drinking out of a baby bottle can also cause the same damage to the teeth as breastfeeding during the middle of the night.

Drinking from sippy cups all the time

As your child grows older, she transitions from a conventional bottle to a sippy cup. However, parents should avoid letting their children constantly drink milk, juices and other sweetened drinks from sippy cups. If you give your child these drinks all the time, her saliva cannot rinse away leftover sugars, which can lead to tooth decay.

Letting the child swallow toothpaste

The fluoride in toothpaste is beneficial in keeping a child’s teeth healthy and strong. However, when a child gets too much fluoride in her body, this can lead to fluorosis which results in white or brown spots on her teeth. Avoid this problem by teaching your child to spit the toothpaste out after brushing her teeth.

Thumb sucking and pacifiers

One bad habit that your child should outgrow before her permanent teeth emerge is thumb sucking. While it may seem harmless, this habit can lead to teeth misalignment. Typically, permanent teeth start growing between the ages of four and six. Before she reaches this age, she should have outgrown this habit.

Pacifiers can also have a similar effect to your child’s teeth. Ideally, your child should eliminate this habit before she turns a year old.

Biting on pencils

As your child starts going to school, you will notice that her pencils have been gnawed. Although this is fairly common in children, help your child eliminate this bad habit to avoid damage to the surface of her teeth, oral trauma and exposure to bacteria.

Nail biting is a similar habit that can damage both your child’s teeth and nails. Apart from that, nail biting sometimes leads to bruxism which results to sensitive teeth and facial pain.