Dentistry for Kids: Tips for Healthy Teeth
As parents, we want our children to maintain good health. A part of maintaining their health is ensuring that they have good oral hygiene. We know that it can be a daunting task to get your children to brush and floss, but it is very important for you to instill this in your child so they learn at an early age that our mouth is a very important part of our body. We are here to provide you with some tips on dentistry for kids.
1.) Getting Your Kids to Brush Their Teeth
As a dentist for children, we know that it can be difficult to get your kids to brush their teeth, but it is very important to teach them at a young age that brushing is one of the most important things they can do to keep themselves healthy. It is recommended that children and adults brush at least twice daily; once in the morning after breakfast and once before bed. The magic number for brushing is for 2 minutes. We know for kids this may seem like a lifetime, but there are many ways to make it fun.
- You can find a song that your child enjoys that is roughly two minutes long. Have them use half the song for their top teeth and the other half for their bottom.
- You can also place a fun timer in the bathroom to be set for two minutes. Let your child be the one to set it each time so it makes them feel like they are in charge of their teeth.
- There are also many good toothbrushes available to purchase that have been designed to light-up or sing for the 2 minutes and may even queue your child with which are to brush.
It is very important that you make time each day for your kids to brush their teeth.
2.) Getting Your Child to Floss
We also know that this can be very difficult to get your kids to do. We know it’s hard for adults to even do, but it is important that your floss every day. Kids learn the best by example, so a good idea is to set aside time each day for you and your child to floss your teeth. This shows your child that it is important to you to floss and it should be important to them too. There are many things that can happen to your mouth if you don’t practice good brushing and flossing habits such as cavities and gum infection (gingivitis) among other things that our childrens dentist will find.
Gingivitis is a gum disease that can affect both kids and adults. If it is caught early it is treatable. Things to watch for that are warning signs of gum disease:
- Bleeding gums at any time (including during brushing and flossing)
- Bright red, swollen gums
- Gums that pull away from the teeth
- Constant bad breath that doesn’t go away
- Children who suffer from Type 1 diabetes may be more susceptible to this disease
Gum disease is 100% preventable with good home care and regular check-ups with your dentist for kids and adults.
3.) What’s So Special About Fluoride?
Fluoride helps develop healthy teeth and prevents early tooth decay, one of the most common childhood diseases. According to the CDC more than 25% of children ages 2-5 are found to have 1 or more cavities. Fluoride stops the acid produced by bacteria from eating away tooth enamel (the hard substance that is protection for our teeth). It can sometimes reverse small tooth decay and it does help prevent new cavities from forming. Generally, your kids get enough fluoride through their water and toothpaste, but it is important to ask questions about fluoride at dental visits from your dentist for kids to see if fluoride treatment could benefit your child.
4.) Get Regular Check-ups and Cleanings
Last but not the least, we highly recommend regular dental exams and cleanings. This means your child should visit the dentist at least once every 6 months. We understand that dentistry for kids can be frightening, but at our offices we do everything we can to make sure that every child who walks through our doors feels welcomed. A child should start seeing a dentist by the age of 3 or 4 at the latest. At these visits your child will get a teeth cleaning, full exam, preventative x-rays (as needed/wanted), and possible fluoride treatments. The doctors and assistants will go over what area may need improvement with you and your child. They will also educate them on the importance of why they are recommending these improvements need made. Our doctors want to make sure that coming to the office is a learning experience for you and your child. They want you to feel like you have been educated about oral health, not scolded about it.
As a dentist for kids, when we see that we are going to have a child come in the office today we prepare to make sure they get the best experience possible. We want them to want to come to the dentist and understand that it is important to keep their teeth healthy. We offer children’s movies, comfy chairs, and even a fully stocked toy bin for them to choose a toy out of after their visit. At our offices, children are very important to us. Our childrens dentist want to educate them on the importance of good oral home care, and show them that taking care of their teeth can be fun. Our doctors are willing to do whatever they can to make sure that each and every child who walks through our doors feels special!
Dentistry for kids is one of our passions at our offices. We want to provide all the help and knowledge we can in order to keep your kiddos healthy. Make sure when you attend their regular check-ups that you feel you are getting enough information on how to properly care for you child’s teeth. Never hesitate to ask questions, your childrens dentist will always be happy to answer them!