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Good oral health benefits your overall health, so it’s important to prioritize your family’s dental care as soon as possible. There are plenty of easy tips to make stellar oral hygiene fun and effective for your whole crew.
Even before your kids have teeth, you need to use a soft washcloth to gently wash their gums each night. As teeth do start coming through the gums, make brushing a habit that occurs at least twice a day. Since you will be the one brushing your child’s teeth in the early days, narrate what you are doing and why so your child will understand. Some parents even make up silly songs to keep their young kids distracted during this process. When it’s time for your child to take over brushing on their own, make sure to brush with them so everyone will clean their mouths for at least two minutes. Seeing adults follow the rules helps kids understand that they are important.
It’s generally recommended that you see a dentist for cleanings every six months. Keep these appointments so kids get used to them and normalize them. Seeing dental cleanings as a routine part of life can help minimize the fears children may develop about going to the dentist. There are dentists in Westerville Ohio or your particular locale who can help your kids feel comfortable. Put your appointments on the calendar and remind your kids as the appointments near. Answer any questions they may have, and remind them that check ups can keep further issues from developing. First visits are recommended in the first year of your child’s life or as soon as they have a tooth erupt through the gums.
Create Good Habits
If brushing and flossing were enough, most of us would have perfect teeth. However, every day we eat and drink items that can break down the enamel on our teeth and leave us open to cavities. As a family, make sure to teach your kids which foods are sometimes foods and which foods can be eaten anytime. Include vegetables and healthy proteins with every meal, and save sweets and desserts for special occasions. Encourage kids to drink water the majority of the time. This will help them stay hydrated and avoid sugary drinks that are bad for their teeth and their overall health. If any adults in the house smoke, set a good example by quitting. It can majorly improve your oral health and add years to your life.
Always Carry Supplies
Whether you pack rolls of floss or floss sticks, make sure you always have some with you when you go out. Many dentists recommend not snacking too often between meals, but that can be hard if you are on the go with kids. At the very least, have floss packed so people in your family can get leftover food out of their mouths before it has a chance to cause damage. Packing mini toothpastes and toothbrushes is also a good idea. Brushing after meals away from the house or snacks on the road can keep your mouth clean and healthy throughout the day. If brushing after every meal and snack seems like too much, at least keep mouthwash with you so you can use it after food is ingested. It will help keep your breath fresh and help your gums.
Make It Fun
If you want your family to take care of their teeth, make it fun! You can create games around good dental habits so it’s easier for everyone in your house to stick with it. Play dance music for two minutes while your kids brush. Put on a fun video so your kids will brush while the short video is on and be too distracted to stop early. Buy electric toothbrushes because they are extremely effective and they just add more fun to brushing. Kids can pick toothbrushes with characters they like, and they can choose the flavor of floss or toothpaste they enjoy the most. Put up a sticker chart so your child can put a sticker on it every time he brushes. At the end of the week, those who have brushed and flossed regularly get a small surprise treat as a reward.
Establishing good dental habits can benefit your entire family. Find ways to make it fun and consistent for the best results.