Good oral health for good general health (Babies)

Key health professionals for delivering this care:
  • Midwives
  • Health visitors
  • Nursery nurses
Key Messages:
  • Good oral health is important for good general health.  Mouthcare is an important part of personal care
  • In order to care for your child’s mouth, it is important to know how to care for your own mouth
  • A child’s first teeth (baby/deciduous teeth) are just as important as the adult teeth - poor oral health behaviour will affect both teeth and gums
  • Tooth decay can cause pain, infection, sleepless nights, time off nursery/school and time off work for parents/carers
  • Small children often need a general anaesthetic to have decayed teeth removed, which can be an unpleasant experience and is not without risk
  • Baby (deciduous) teeth are important to guide the adult teeth into the right position. If they are lost early, the spaces for the adult teeth can be lost, and they may come through crooked
Linked Resources:
  • A practical guide to children’s teeth (British Society of Paediatric Dentistry)
  • This is a resource for parents, carers and health professionals about looking after baby’s teeth and gums in their first year
  • This is a behaviour change tool designed by Doncaster Council to help practitioners (health visitors and nursery nurses) promote and support good oral health practice in families. It will help them to focus on prevention and give them improved access to relevant resources for supporting positive oral health behaviour. 
  • Dental health promotion module on e-Learning for Healthcare suitable for health visitors, nurses, trainee paediatricians and the child health team

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