The best way to ensure you’ll end up with strong, healthy and capable teenagers is to get young children into healthy habits, and with teeth it is absolutely no different.
A child’s language development begins significantly before their first words, and, believe it or not, their dental health begins before their first tooth. Promoting healthy oral habits, modeling quality tooth care and keeping dental visits, taking time to practice brushing and flossing are all things that will lend to your child valuing their dental hygiene routine and making sure dental care is a high priority in their own adult lives.
Center for disease control has estimated that 19% of children ages 2-19 have untreated cavities. Avoid becoming a part of those numbers by avoiding these 5 bad habits.
#1- Avoiding the dentist.
O.M.G! No, don’t do it! With a super cool, and fun, dental office like Surfside, we know you aren’t avoiding us for personal reasons. You’ll definitely want to get your kiddos to the dentist before their first birthday, if not earlier. Recommendations advise at least within 6 months of their first tooth. First visits are an important time for your family dentist to assess proper growth and development and to teach you to properly clean baby’s teeth. Keeping regular appointments twice a year will ensure that tooth decay, and other dental risks are identified early and either treated or averted.
#2- Sugary Drinks.
American Academy of pediatrics now recommends that children under the age of 1 should not have juice, so I we can pretty safely say that also includes sodas and sweet drinks. Make sure your children don’t for a sweet drink habit by keeping it out of the house and making it a special treat. When they do have juice or soda make sure to have them swish afterwards with water. It might seem tiresome, but teeth are as precious as jewels, and are a lot harder to replace!
#3-Bottles and night nursing.
Getting the little ones to bed can be mind-numbing and can feel impossible. Giving a snack as they go down is a quick way to get them to sleep. However, one of the main ingredients in milk is lactose (sugar). Breastmilk and formula are an essential part of baby’s diet. It is recommended that children drink mother’s milk or formula at least until their first birthday, and cow’s milk after that. So, there are going to be bottles. The issue is with putting a child down for a nap or bedtime with all that sugar on their teeth. Baby teeth, especially, can become decayed as overexposure to these sugars break down the enamel. After their first teeth come, it is time to start cleaning your baby’s teeth after ever feeding by either washing or wiping away the left over milk.
#4- Hard Candy.
Kids love candy, and people love giving kids candy. Having a piece of candy as treat or a reward has become pretty common these days. Unfortunately, these candies are designed to be sucking candies. Here is a double edged sword. If they are used the way they are intended, then they stay in your child’s mouth delivering a steady sugary coating, which will eat away at the enamel. If they are bitten into, which let’s face it is the most likely happening here, well, then there is a high risk that they will chip or fracture a tooth. Best to steer clear, and get into the habit of munching of nuts or something your teeth are made for.
#5- Brushing Too Hard.
Did you know you could brush too hard? One of the reasons it is essential to spend time with your children when they are brushing, even if they “know how to do it now”, os to teach them proper brushing technique. Young, eager, impatient brushers sometimes aggressively attack teeth instinctively feeling that the harder they brush the cleaner the teeth will be. However, they need to be directed to brush gently and too avoid scrubbing. Rough brushing can disrupt enamel and cause root and tooth damage.
Hopefully this guide has been informative and interesting. We sincerely hope it will help you to avoid some of the common pitfalls to excellent oral health for yourself and your little surfer’s too.
Stay cool, and see you at the Surfside!