Post Natal Care and Dental Health
It’s important to maintain good oral health during pregnancy. It is just as important to look after your teeth once your newborn arrives. If you experienced gum problems due to hormonal changes during pregnancy, or if you didn’t manage to see your dentist whilst expecting, a dental checkup must be a priority (as well as sleeping, good nutrition, and enjoying your new baby).
Of course, your baby’s oral health is equally important as your own. Below are some tips from the Australian Dental Association (ADA) on how to start looking after your baby’s oral health:
- Gently wipe your baby’s gums with a moistened soft cloth once a day—yes, even before a tooth appears
- Once a tooth erupts, use a baby toothbrush and brush her teeth with plain water
- Use a low-fluoride toothpaste 18 months and beyond
- Avoid feeding your child with the utensils you use—you can pass bacteria to your child by doing so
- Cavity -causing bacteria known as Streptococcus mutans can be transmitted from mothers to infants even before teeth erupt. The better the mother’s oral health, the less the chance of transmitting tooth decay to her infant.
Mums, Dads and all carers should remember that they are the most influential role models to their children so it is important to set an example when it comes to maintaining good oral health.
This post was first published May 12, 2014. It was updated April 30, 2019.