How To Keep Your Child’s Teeth Healthy?

Keeping your child’s teeth healthy is every parent’s responsibility. Healthy dental habits will go a long way in making sure your child’s overall health stays good. We are celebrating Children’s Dental Health Month this February. Start teaching healthy dental habits to your children from an early age. Your children will thank you later.  

Did you know that 1 out of 5 children aged 5-11 years have at least one untreated decayed tooth and 1 out of 7 adolescents aged 12-19 years have at least one untreated decayed tooth? As a parent these are alarming statistics however the good news is with good oral health practices these are totally preventable. Let us see what you as a parent can do to ensure that your child’s teeth are healthy. 

Babies, toddlers and children up to 3 years old 

  1. If the baby has no teeth, then wipe their gums with a soft wet cloth at least twice a day preferably after feeding and before going to bed. This will prevent any leftover food from staying in the mouth for too long to cause any problems. 
  1. Brush your child’s teeth as soon as they start erupting. Milk teeth are also important to take care of. Use a child size toothbrush and plain water for babies below 1 years. For children up to 3 years use pea/ rice grain sized toothpaste.  Ask your dentist if a fluoride toothpaste can be used 
  1. Visit your pediatric dentist before the child turns one or as soon as teeth start erupting.   
  1. Start flossing when the child has 2 teeth that touch. 
  1. Check with your dentist about putting fluoride varnish on your child’s teeth. Read more about it in our blog Fluoride treatment for children. 

For children from 3 years to 6 years old 

  1. Let the children learn how to brush their teeth on their own. Teach them and help them learn the right way to hold the brush while brushing. 
  1. Ensure that the children use pea sized amount of fluoride toothpaste while brushing. 
  1. Make sure the children are spitting and not swallowing the toothpaste. 
  1. Discipline the kids to brush twice a day and floss at least once a day. Use fun activities to motivate them to inculcate good oral habits. To read more on this you can check out our blog Kids hate brushing. What can you do?  
  1. Make them drink fluoridated tap water. 
  1. Check with your dentist if a dental sealant needs to be applied. 

For children above 7 years old 

  1. Ideally children above 7 years of age can brush their teeth on their own. However, keep an eye on  
  1. Whether they are brushing properly. 
  1. Whether they are brushing twice a day for 2 minutes. 
  1. Whether they are flossing at least once a day and correctly. 
  1. Teach your children about the importance of oral hygiene and how it affects their overall health. 
  1. Make sure they are eating food that is good for their teeth like fresh fruits and vegetables rich in fiber, cheese, milk, yogurt. 
  1. Avoid bad foods like hard candies, sodas and other sugary drinks. If not avoidable minimize their consumption. 
  1. Make sure they keep their dental appointments. 

There are higher chances of your child getting cavities if – 

  1. There is a history of cavities in the immediate family (parents or siblings). 
  1. If the child eats too much sugary drinks especially between meals. 
  1. If the child has special health care needs. 
  1. If the child has braces. 

In all above cases you may have to do a little extra to take care of their teeth. If your child is more vulnerable to cavities due to above mentioned reasons, we advise you to speak to your dentist to find what extra care do you need to take to make sure your child has good oral health. 

For a child, the parent is a role model, so it is your duty as a parent to practice what you preach. Take good care of your teeth and let that be a shining example for your kids on how one should take care of their dental health. Give them better food choices and teach them about how they can best take care of their teeth. You cannot be always around to check if they are doing what they should be doing so motivate them to stay on the path of discipline when it comes to their health especially oral health. Make dental health a priority and make it fun. Do not scare or punish the children with dental visits. Make dental visits attractive, something they will look forward to. 

The ultimate objective is to keep children cavity free. Untreated dental diseases not only impact the child’s ability to eat, drink or sleep well it also impacts their self-esteem. Poor self-esteem can impact a child’s social development. Parenting is not easy but there are many advantages you can reap if you can teach your children to make their health a priority. Just like all good habits will help your child succeed and live a healthy happy life in the future so will training your children on how best to take care of their teeth.  

We hope you learnt something new after reading this blog. Please share it with your family and friends if you liked it. For any dental queries, you can always call Ensure Dental Care on 940-274-3229. You can also schedule an appointment with us. Ensure Dental Care offers emergency dental services. Regardless of your issue we offer same day emergency treatments. We entertain walk ins also. 

We are the family dentist near you. Ensure Dental Care is the one of the best family dental clinics at Saginaw Texas. We accept all major insurance providers. We also have in house payment plan. We have a very experienced and professional team of dental practitioners, and we look forward to serving you to the best of our abilities. 

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