As a parent, you have endless responsibilities, and your child’s health depends on you. Oral health is extremely important in children, and preventative measures must be taken to avoid costly dental care later in their adolescence. You can help your kid avoid tooth decay and gum disease by watching their oral hygiene.
Preventative measures promoted by parents is the best way to maintain healthy and beautiful teeth and gums. Another benefit of teaching your kids good oral hygiene habits from a young age is affirming that your child will have good habits in their adult years. Bad breath can ruin an important first impression, and a beautiful smile is a quality many adults admire, so it’s best to master these healthy mouth habits early. Below are 5 tips for teaching your kids good oral hygiene:
Brush after sugar
To avoid cavities and tooth decay, sugary foods should be avoided as much as possible, but it’s almost impossible to cut your child off from sugar completely. That’s why it’s important for them to get into the habit of brushing their teeth after they’ve eaten sugar, so that the acids from the sugar don’t have as much time to sit on the teeth and cause decay.
Teach your children that being given a tasty treat is contingent on them brushing their teeth afterwards. Another benefit of brushing their teeth after eating a treat is that the minty fresh taste in their mouth averts cravings for second and third helpings of desserts.
Schedule regular dental check-ups
Our friends at Truedent Family Dentistry remind us of an important regimen: “Children should see a dentist every 6 months, starting at the age of 1. Regular dental check-ups will save you money in the long run.” It is very true that regular dental check-ups save parents money in the long run. Dentists will be able to keep track of any issues and ensure they don’t develop into serious problems. They can help keep your child’s mouth healthy and clean.
Your kid will look forward to dental visits because they often get a toy or prize of some sort after their cleaning. Many dentists have big boxes of cool toys and prizes for kids to choose something from, and they’ll also give your child a colorful new toothbrush.
Teach proper brushing and flossing techniques
Many children would have healthier mouths if they brushed their teeth the proper way, instead of the quick and lazy way. Brushing their teeth should take at least 2 minutes for a proper job. This will allow for an effective and more thorough clean, preventing the buildup of plaque.
Remind your kids to brush their teeth before bed, and ask them questions such as “did you floss?” Simple reminders will help your kids to get into the habit of taking care of their teeth. Kids can get lazy, especially when it comes to flossing. Flossing is a crucial oral health step that is often skipped by kids. It may help to floss with your children so that they can mimic you. Plus, you need to floss too, so you may as well do it together.
Make oral health fun
Let your child choose a fun toothbrush, a special toothpaste, and find a way to make the oral hygiene routine fun. Some toothbrushes are decorated with your child’s favorite Disney characters. Some kids toothbrushes even play a song while they brush, which is a strategic length of time to allow for a proper brush. Their job is to brush until the song is over. Some kids think electric toothbrushes are fun, and that’s a great thing since electric toothbrushes do a better job of brushing. Finally, try a flavored floss. Some kids brands of floss are fun flavors that actually taste good while they floss. Giving your kids these gimmicks makes them want to brush and floss, so give the gimmicks a try.
Check medicines for sugars
Children’s medications can be flavored and have added sugar, which is why it’s crucial to check the ingredients before buying. If the sugary medicine sticks onto the teeth, you’re increasing their risk of tooth decay and cavities.
If your child has asthma, that’s another medication you need to be weary of. Some asthma medications can cause an overgrowth of yeast in the child’s mouth, which can lead to a nasty fungal infection called oral thrush. If you notice curd-like patches on the tongue or inside the mouth, this could be a sign of yeast overgrowth.