MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Tooth decay is the most common chronic childhood disease in the United States. Now the American Dental Association has new recommendations to try to keep kids cavity free as long as possible.
The ADA says children should begin using toothpaste with fluoride as soon as they get their first tooth to help fight cavities.
For kids under 3, parents should use just a smear of paste.
For children 3 to 6, a pea-sized amount is suggested.
Previous guidelines recommended fluoride toothpaste only after age 2.
“Not having the fluoride, you would be more susceptible to decay,” said Dentist Mark Hochburg.
One-in-four children have cavities by the time they enter kindergarten.
Dentists say use only small amounts of fluoride because if it’s swallowed it can discolor permanent teeth.