Helpful Strategies to Protect Tiny Teeth

Helpful Strategies
to Protect Tiny Teeth

tooth sparkling

Set your kids up for a lifetime of good oral health with
these strategies for infants and children.
Babies

You can’t see your infant’s teeth, but they’re there, hiding just beneath the gums. Take care of them right from the start with these 4 strategies.

sun and moon and wipe, two times

1

Wipe gums twice a day with a soft, clean cloth in the morning after the first feeding and right before bed to wipe away bacteria and sugars that
can cause cavities.

toothbrush and water

2

When teeth come in, start brushing twice a day with a soft, small‑bristled toothbrush and plain water.

one birthday candle

3

Visit the dentist by your baby’s first birthday
to spot signs of
problems early.

shiny tooth

4

Talk to your dentist or doctor about putting fluoride varnish on your child’s teeth as soon as the first tooth appears.

For children younger than 2, consult your dentist
or doctor before you use fluoride toothpaste.

medical professionals

Children

Cavities are still one of the most common chronic diseases for kids from age 6 to 19. Protect your child’s teeth by having them:

toothbrush times two

1

Brush their teeth twice a day
with fluoride toothpaste.

glass of water

2

Drink tap water
that contains fluoride.

shiny tooth

3

Get dental sealants for your child when your dentist says
it’s the right time.

toothepaste

If your child is younger than 6, watch them brush. Make sure they use a pea-sized amount of toothpaste and always spit it out rather than swallow. Help your child brush until they have good brushing skills.

For more about how to protect your children’s oral health, visit
www.cdc.gov/oralhealth/publications/features/childrens-dental-health.html.
Good Oral Health Is Important for Pregnant Women

When you’re pregnant, you may be more prone to gum disease and cavities, which can affect your baby’s health. Follow these 3 steps to protect your teeth:

dental chair

1

See a dentist (it’s safe!)
before you deliver.

toothbrush times two

2

Brush twice a day
with fluoride toothpaste.

dental floss

3

Floss daily.

If you have nausea, rinse your mouth with 1 teaspoon of baking soda in a glass of water after you get sick. This helps wash stomach acid away and keep your tooth enamel safe.

glass of water

For more tips on good oral health for adults,
visit www.cdc.gov/chronicdisease/resources/infographic/oralhealth.htm.
Page last reviewed: August 23, 2021