Teeth at Three

21 February 2014

The first time I took the girls to the dentist, it was a memorable event. 

They were around a year and a half and I picked them up midday and drove straight to the dentist office - no diaper bag, no nothing. (Please note that fact and my double negative!). The minute we were on the dentist's chair, the first baby had a major blowout. Then the second followed. On our FIRST visit to the dentist. I was "that" mom who didn't have diapers or anything of the sort on her. I believe that we left the appointment with the girls sorta wrapped in those stiff paper towels that grace all medical offices. Luckily for us, the dentist was a mom to 7 month old twins and I jokingly told her that she should take my experience as a preview of what life could be like. 

Memorable is the word.

Fast forward to last week and the girls had what was their 3rd or 4th dentist visit. It was fun, no cavities to report and the dentist whispered to me that even though she's supposed to "graduate" them up to a doctor that deals with older kids, she won't. She's keeping 'em. We love you too Dr M!

That anecdote aside, I'm going to end this post with my list of best practices for teeth at three based on advice I've got from our dentist over the last few visits

PS: If at all available, choose a pediatric dentist instead of a general dentist who treats different ages. The office of the pediatric dentist is structured specifically for kids so visits end up being mega-fun.

  1. From age 1- 3, brush daily and then switch to twice a day. I don't see myself brushing the twins' teeth twice a day right now. However, I want to start teaching them to brush by themselves and THEN we can start brushing twice a day
  2. Last fluids of the day should be preferably water. I follow this religiously. It prevents sugar from other fluids sitting in their mouth over night
  3. Avoid raisins and stick-foods at night. I do that too
Some other things I've been doing for the twins' dental hygiene is
  1. I stopped using kiddie toothpaste and started them on the same toothpaste that we use. They get a third of a pea size. Read the label. Some say "not for kids under 6" and some don't
  2. I use an electric toothbrush - This Panasonic one only available online - because it comes with a light so that I can see inside their mouths and the head is much smaller than the grocery-store kiddie electronic toothbrushes. The refills are costly but worth it in my opinion
  3. Dentist says we should start flossing and gave us a bag of crayola floss sticks for kids. I confess, I haven't started yet.
I know the fluoride + kids topic is a hot/controversial one. Where do you stand on that?

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