18 Apr #5: Teaching Children Dental Care
Teaching Children Dental Care
Parenting is a huge responsibility… Often when you think you have all the bases covered, something crops up. Children’s dental care is one of those responsibilities.
We see many patients where children have not been taught, or are not taking part in proper oral health and dental care practices. Whilst children may not like brushing their teeth, it’s important to share these messages on a regular basis. Great oral health and dental care habits develop from an early age. Preventing dental problems (and big dentist bills) is easier when you have the right information.
As we know, baby teeth fall out, but they are just as important as adult teeth and they help children to talk, eat and smile. So it pays to take care of them!
There are several main points associated with good oral health and dental care. Its important to teach children from a very young age. The three main categories include; brushing / cleaning, drinking and eating.
Everyone should brush their teeth twice per day, once after breakfast and once before bed.
For children, it is important that they are taught to brush along their gum line and use low-fluoride toothpaste. All children should see a dentist by age two for their first check up.
Teach children the correct technique for brushing their teeth. Moving the brush in small circles over each tooth at the front and backwards and forwards for the back teeth. This should be repeated on the inside surfaces of teeth also.
Ensuring your children consume healthy drinks is vital for oral health. Make sure you limit drinks like soft drinks, fruit juices, energy drinks, with tap water being the preferred drink for children (and adults!)
Tap water is a preference because most households have access to fluoridated water. If necessary, bottled water is a better option than fizzy carbonated drinks.
Milk is also a great alternative as it provides vitamins and nutrients. Remember to always drink plain milk because flavoured milks are loaded with added sugar which is linked to tooth decay.
A standard for good health, and not just oral health, is to enjoy a wide variety of nutritious foods and limit foods containing sugar.
Parents often find it hard to get their children to eat healthy food. Children don’t like the tastes and textures of fruits and vegetables. Filling your children up on high sugar foods like muesli bars, chocolates, ice creams and lollies is harmful to their teeth. It also increases their chances of obesity and chronic health outcomes in adult life.
There are a range of resources available online and through community health services, GPs and Government agencies which can greatly assist you in ensuring your children are eating healthy foods.
It can be hard for parents to ensure their children are taking care of their teeth. However, it is important to always remember what a big investment dental care is for your child’s future.
Dental bills and unattractive smiles can ruin anyone’s future. Diamond Dental can assess your child’s teeth and help you with an appropriate dental care plan to keep them smiling.