Good dental health begins at an early age. Parents often wonder how they can ensure that their children develop and maintain positive habits towards oral hygiene.
Our team at Northpoint Dental Care is committed to ensuring our patients and their families enjoy long term dental health. We have laid out four steps to keeping children engaged in maintain clean teeth as their smiles grow.
Children are especially susceptible to decay from the consumption of sugar. Candy, sodas, sports drinks, and even certain breaded foods and snacks contain high amounts of sugar that encourage the growth of bacteria, which damages the enamel and soft tissues.
Parents are in the ideal position to limit the consumption of these foods.
We encourage the consumption of foods that are low in sugar content, like vegetables and proteins. While we understand that certain healthy foods still have sugar, such as apples and other fruits, these are foods that provide nutritional benefits. Drinking water after such snacks can ensure that food particles and sugar are removed from the surface of teeth.
Even when maintaining a healthy diet, regular brushing and flossing is necessary to keep bacteria from accumulating. Brushing before bed is a habit that should be encouraged while children are young, helping them maintain hygiene habits well into adulthood.
While your child is still too young to brush their own teeth, gently brush and floss for them using only a dab of fluoride-free toothpaste. As children grow older, monitor their brushing and flossing to make sure they are using the proper technique, and keep them actively brushing before bed. If you have doubts about how your child is maintaining their own oral hygiene, the use of a special tablet that colors plaque can help. It turns unbrushed areas present pink, making it easy to correct hygiene habits.
Brushing and flossing don’t have to be seen as a chore. With modern toothbrushes, toothpastes, and mouthwashes, at-home hygiene can be accompanied by your child’s favorite music, TV or movie characters, and even their favorite flavors. If a toothbrush that plays your child’s favorite music is not available, play a song on your phone, tablet, computer, or anything else that makes brushing feel more like a game.
The most important step in preserving your child’s dental health is to acclimate them to regular dental appointments. At Northpoint Dental Care, we encourage parents to bring their children in for regular exams and cleanings, allowing them to view visits to the dentist as something to look forward to.
Schedule an exam and consultation with our Fishers children’s dentist today!
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