When it comes to children’s teeth and gums, a pivotal responsibility of parents and dentists is to educate young kids and teens on the advantages of having a healthy and attractive smile.
Building a rapport with your child about the proper care of their teeth, and turning brushing and flossing time into quality time together, forms positive experiences related to their oral health. This, in addition to an early introduction to the dentist, is a great way to encourage positive dental habits.
These Five Habits Support Your Child’s Oral Health
Continue to spend time with your child while they brush and be a good role model by promoting these healthy habits:
- Establish a proactive and fun home oral hygiene routine. Two minutes with a manual or, better yet, motorized toothbrush along with proper daily flossing helps to keep oral bacteria in check. This is important for your child’s overall health as well since a direct connection exists between poor oral health and systemic illness.
- Provide plenty of water. Instead of sugary drinks, offer water. Drinking lots of water not only keeps the mouth moist but it also helps rid it of leftover food debris. Drinking water after having highly acidic beverage like orange juice or soda will help reduce their harmful effects on tooth enamel. Remember to wait at least 30 minutes after drinking orange juice or soda to brush your teeth, as the disturbed enamel needs time to settle so it is not washed away.
- Find a dentist you trust. Even the best-behaved child can be anxious when receiving dental care and require a patient but engaging chair-side manner. Don’t be afraid to ask questions before scheduling your child’s first dental visit.
- Have your child use a mouth guard if they play sports or grind their teeth at night. Night guards not only protect teeth but can prevent TMJ pain from developing.
- Teach your child not to use their teeth as tools. With the exception of a teething ring for babies, the only materials teeth should be biting into is food. Not ice cubes, toys, or pencils, just food.
Look into the Future of Your Family’s Smiles
San Gabriel Valley Family Dental provides comprehensive dental care for you and your loved ones. If you are seeking compassionate care for every member of your family, call our San Gabriel dental practice today!