If you’re a new mum, it’s likely you’ll have some of the same challenges as any other.
In a survey conducted by Australian researchers, nearly a quarter of women said they had experienced tooth breakages at some point in their life, and a quarter had suffered tooth damage or loss.
“There’s always been an issue of tooth wear and tear in babies,” Dr. Sue Fong, an oral surgeon and associate professor at the University of Melbourne, told ABC News.
“[Tissue] is a very delicate, elastic, very resilient tissue that will never be fully replaced.”
Dr. Fong said that, while it’s normal for a baby to need a denture, there’s a lot of confusion around how much it should be, and how often it needs to be worn.
She says while a tooth might have broken during a surgery, the break is usually minimal.
“We know that tooth break-up is a really uncommon occurrence,” she said.
“In fact, about 25 per cent of babies that have their first teeth break a bit during a dental procedure, and that’s about as many as have tooth loss.”
If your baby breaks your jaw, you might not realise until you’ve started chewing and the tooth begins to lose some of its grip, Dr. Fang said.
If you’re feeling pain, a tooth pick might be helpful, but it can be a bit tricky to get hold of the tooth with your fingers.
The most important thing is to have a good grasp of the bone and to make sure you don’t break the jaw, she said, adding that a toothpick can also be used to get a hold of teeth that are damaged.
Dr. Wong, a dentist from the University, said that a healthy baby will have teeth that feel firm and soft at the same time.
“Your baby’s teeth are not designed for this kind of wear and break,” she told ABC TV.
“They’re designed to withstand the stresses of everyday life, to hold together and to function well.”
While you may not be able to see the dentures at first, the toothpick will give you a clearer idea of how much tooth wear you’re experiencing.
When it comes to dentures, there are a few things you should be aware of, including the length of time a dentures lasts, how many different types there are and what type of denture it is.
You may also need to make certain that the toothbrush you’re using is the right one for your baby’s tooth.
“The best way to do that is to make a good-quality toothbrush that has enough room and is not too thick,” Dr Fong advised.
“A good quality toothbrush should be made of a soft, non-absorbent material, like plastic or polypropylene.”
You can also use a toothbrush to check for any breaks in the bone before you give your baby a denturing appointment.
Dr Fong says there’s no need to rush toothpick use if you’re planning to give your child a new one.
“When you give them a new tooth, it will be a good idea to check the denture for signs of wear,” she advised.
“If there are any, you’ll want to put a little bit of a pressure on the bone to see if the tooth has slipped.
It’s not just for the dental professional, you want to be sure that the denturing is safe for your child and that it doesn’t cause any problems for the baby.”
Dr Fung said there are also a few tips for using toothbrushes when giving your baby toothbrushing.
“There are certain things that you can do to make the experience as safe as possible,” she added.
“Take a good, firm grip on the tooth, be careful not to move the tooth in any way, but make sure that you don, too.”ABC Health Writer David Dutton is based in Melbourne.