It’s no secret that teaching about oral health for kids early on can save lots of time and energy. When we invest in teaching our kids how to maintain great dental hygiene practices, we give them the confidence to live happy and healthy in other areas of life, too.
Though setting a routine teeth-brushing time every morning and night may seem like a simple act, it resonates as an important part of the day that should never be skipped. As you help your children take care of their teeth, talk to them about the pitfalls of sugar, cavities, brushing, flossing, and other important aspects of cleaning the mouth.
How to Prevent Cavities
First and foremost, help your kids reduce their chances of getting cavities by brushing twice daily and flossing to remove plaque and other food debris. It’s also important to eat a balanced meal and go easy on the sugar and acidic substances (such a soda) to avoid cavities and plaque build-up on the teeth and gums. Keep up a consistent routine and take your children to visit the dentist regularly for examinations.
Brushing the Right Way
Though brushing is important, it means very little to your overall oral health if not done properly. So teach your children how to brush the correct way, and supervise until they are able to do it solo.
- Squeeze a pea-size amount of toothpaste on a soft-bristle toothbrush. Never allow your children to swallow toothpaste.
- Gently brush the inner surface of each tooth; this is the region where plaque builds up quickly. With a back and forth motion, clean behind the front teeth (top and bottom).
- Angle the brush along the outer gum line and clean the outer surface of each tooth.
- Brush the chewing surfaces of the teeth.
- Don’t forget to brush the tongue!
Age 4 is an ideal age to start flossing your children’s teeth to remove food particles and plaque between the teeth that you can’t reach while brushing. By age 8, your little one should be well equipped to floss independently.
Secret to Great Oral Health for Kids
A balanced diet is a must for children. Eating more healthy, whole foods and cutting out too many starchy, sugary snacks can help keep the teeth strong and resistant to decay. Ensure that your family is getting the proper range of vitamins and minerals to maintain a healthy diet–this includes a good source of calcium.
Seal the Deal
Many parents invest in dental sealants to avoid cavities caused by trapped food and bacteria. Dentists apply dental sealants to permanent molars, where cavities are prone to form. Speak with your dentist to see if dental sealants are right for your child.
Do you still have questions about oral health for kids? Let’s talk about it! Schedule an appointment for you and your “mini-me,” and let’s get on the road to a healthy, brilliant smile.