load icon

Request An Appointment

  • Preferred Appointment Day/Time (select all that apply):

  • Day
  • Time

  • This form is not to be used for solicitation or advertising purposes. The information you’ve provided will only be used by our staff to contact you and will never be released to third parties. For more details, please review our privacy policy. By submitting your information to Park Dental, you agree to our website's Terms and Conditions. We ask you to review these Terms and Conditions prior to submitting your information.
  • Section Break

Home | News | Oral Health Information | Parental Advice for Children’s Teeth

Parental Advice for Children’s Teeth

February 09, 2018
Park Dental Edina Dentist Annette Dunford
By Annette G. Dunford, DDS
Park Dental Edina

When is the first visit to the dentist?


The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry and Park Dental recommend that a child’s first dental visit occurs shortly after the first tooth erupts and no later than the first birthday.

However, preventative visits for the very young are not common, yet:

  • Only 10 percent of infants from birth to 12 months are seen.
  • Only 23 percent of infants over 24 months are seen

At the visit, the dentist will do:

  1. A thorough evaluation of the developing teeth and mouth.
  2. A presentation of an oral health prevention program customized for each child.

Brushing and Flossingchildrens-dental-care-tips-park-dental

Brush any and all teeth as soon as they erupt. Use a toothbrush with soft bristles and a brush head small enough to fit the child’s mouth. Use infant brushes for infants. Brush after breakfast and right before bedtime, always twice daily. Brush longer, when more teeth have erupted. Spend two minutes brushing when all 20 baby teeth have erupted.


Use fluoride toothpaste, but never swallow it. Use only a tiny flat smear of toothpaste, the size of a grain of rice, for infants up to two years of age. A pea-size amount of toothpaste is fitting for ages three to six. Always brush or assist these young children with brushing, since they cannot brush their own teeth effectively.

Flossing should be done when teeth are lined up side-by-side. There is no specific starting age for flossing.

Sippy Cups and Pacifiers

Sippy cups are over used. They are a training tool helping young children to transition from a bottle to a cup. Sippy cups should only be used for a brief period of time. If used between meals or if there is frequent drinking or sipping occurring, a bottle or sippy cup should only be filled with water. If a bottle or sippy cup is used at bedtime, it should be filled with water.

Pacifiers or Thumb-sucking

Most children stop using pacifiers or thumb-sucking on their own. Usually, if the habit continues, parents should discourage or discuss with the child. If the habit goes beyond the child’s third birthday, it may require a corrective mouth appliance.

Following these tips will get your child started on the road to a lifetime of good oral hygiene and health.

Why do some doctors not have a star rating or comments?

In order to provide our patients with the most accurate and beneficial information, we only post star ratings and comments for a doctor once they have received a minimum of 30 surveys within the previous 12 months.