If you’re pregnant, adding your little one to your health and dental coverage is probably on your pre-baby to-do list. But really, you don’t need to take action until your baby arrives:
Here’s what you need to know when enrolling your new baby:
How you enroll your baby will depend on your coverage. You’ll either need to contact HR, your insurer directly or make the addition on Gov (New Jersey).
Insurance companies typically require that a newborn be added to a policy within 30 days of birth.
Dental care should begin at birth. Dentists recommend wiping baby’s gums with a damp washcloth or soft infant toothbrush after meals. Once the first tooth erupts, start brushing gently with a soft, baby-sized toothbrush twice a day. Schedule your child’s first dental appointment by age 1.
Other new parent dental tips to keep in mind:
Never put a child to bed with a bottle of milk, juice, sweetened water or soft drinks. The sugar in these beverages can lead to severe tooth decay.
Begin using a small dab of fluoride toothpaste when brushing your child’s teeth at the age of 24 months – be sure to check with your child’s doctor first.
Help your child begin to brush his or her own teeth as soon as they are able, usually around age 2.
Supervise and assist with brushing and flossing until the child has demonstrated the coordination and willingness to consistently do a thorough job on his or her own – usually around age 6 to 8.
Check your children’s toothbrushes often; when the bristles begin to splay apart they need to be replaced.
Practice a healthy dental routine to keep your child can cavity-free! Learn how to care for kids’ smiles at every age.