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7 Essential Dental Care Habits to Teach Your Kids

Any concerned parent or guardian wants to ensure their child has healthy teeth. More importantly, you want to make sure you build a solid foundation for your child that will lead to better oral health for life.

While it’s very easy to develop bad dental hygiene habits, it takes work to develop good habits. In this article, the dentists at Dental Town are going to cover a few dental care habits to teach your kids today to ensure they understand the techniques and the importance of taking care of their teeth and gums.

Brushing: The Foundation of Oral Care

girl-brushing-teethFrom a very young age children should learn to brush their teeth properly, as it’s the foundation of good oral hygiene. While brushing teeth is easy and anyone can learn how to do it properly, the right frequency and technique are important.

Children and adults should brush their teeth for approximately two minutes, 2-3 times per day. While minor bleeding can occur and is normal from time to time, if bleeding persists or is accompanied by pain, then it’s important to see a dentist immediately.

In addition, it’s important to teach your children the importance of using a fluoride toothpaste. Most over-the-counter products now contain fluoride, but it’s important to check the toothpaste label just to be safe.

Flossing: Getting the Gunk Out

While brushing is a staple of any oral care routine, flossing is often overlooked. Flossing is important because it enables you to remove small food particles from in between teeth— the difficult-to-reach spots that a toothbrush cannot reach.

If excess debris is not removed from between the teeth, it can harden and lead to tooth decay over time.

As a parent or guardian, it’s important that you floss your teeth regularly so that your children see that you practice what you preach.

Healthy Eating Habits

Proper nutrition isn’t just important for looking and feeling great, as poor nutrition can have a negative impact on your oral health and overall well-being. Specifically, it’s important that you teach children to avoid excess sugary candy and beverages.

Obviously, keeping kids from drinking soft drinks and eating candy can be difficult, but it’s important they understand that “everything in moderation” is a good philosophy, especially when it comes to sugary drinks and foods.

Avoid Using Your Teeth as “Tools”

kid-in-chairThis is a bad habit that most adults have been guilty of at one time or another. Whether it’s trying to rip open a bag of chips or holding something in your mouth (using your mouth as an extra “hand”), your teeth are meant for chewing on food and nothing else.

You’ll help your child avoid potentially costly trips to the dentist in the future if you teach them at a young age that using their teeth as a tool is not okay.

Consistent Dental Visits

Seeing the dentist for routine checkups every 4-6 months should be ingrained in your child’s oral healthcare habits.

If parents and guardians teach their children from an early age the importance of visiting the dentist on a consistent basis for oral exams, they will likely continue this behavior in the future.

Wear a Mouthguard While Playing Sports

Whether it’s football, basketball, baseball, softball, lacrosse, hockey, or any other sport, it’s important for a child or adult to protect themselves from oral injury. A custom mouthguard from your dentist or a mouthguard manufacturer is relatively inexpensive, and can save you from experiencing painful dental trauma in the future.

In addition, the dental work needed to repair sports-related oral injuries is often significant, which means a simple mouthguard could potentially save you thousands of dollars in out-of-pocket medical expenses.

Bottom line: Teach your child to wear a mouthguard when they play sports!

Learn the Signs of Dental Problems

kid-in-chair2No matter how careful you are at taking care of your teeth, problems can occur. When they do, it’s important to teach your children to recognize the symptoms of oral problems so they can see a dentist as soon as possible.

If your child is experiencing gum or tooth sensitivity, excessive bleeding while brushing, or any other abnormal signs, it’s important to show them the importance of seeking professional care immediately.

When it comes to your dental care, you cannot be too careful. Procrastinating is not going to make the problem go away.

Looking for a Dentist for Your Child? Welcome to Dental Town!

If you are looking for a new pediatric dentist in the north Atlanta area, look no further than Dental Town. With locations in Johns Creek, Alpharetta, Canton, and Cumming, GA, we promise that you’ve never seen anything like our office.

Your child will love Dental Town, so pick up the phone and give us a call, or contact us here to schedule your appointment today.