23 Feb 5 Dental Health Tips for Your Kids
Hicks Dental Group in Prescott is a family practice specializing in dental health for patients of all ages. We enjoy promoting good dental health for kids, who need to learn daily dental habits while they’re young. Childhood is the time for kids to develop an oral hygiene routine to maintain throughout their lives.
But it can be hard to encourage these habits in kids. They often have shorter attention spans, and they’d rather be doing other things than brushing or going to the dentist. That’s why we need to help them understand why dental hygiene is important. Here are 5 vital tips that promote dental health for kids:
1. Educate Your Kids
Many people underestimate children. They’re capable of learning the same knowledge about dental health that adults are. And they should know how essential it is to practice good oral hygiene.
That said, share facts like these with your kids so they understand the stakes.
2. Stick to Kid-Friendly Products
Part of keeping your child “in the loop” about their oral health is making sure they’re engaged in it. You’ve seen toothbrushes and toothpaste with their favorite characters, or in familiar flavors, at the grocery store. If your child is on the younger side, consider investing in these products. Let them pick out a brush and toothpaste that they like.
Keep in mind, though, that just because a product appears kid-friendly, it may not be. The American Dental Association (ADA) recognizes the safest and most efficient products on the market. Make sure the toothpaste or brush that you pick for your child has the ADA Seal of Approval.
3. Encourage Healthy Snacking
There’s no denying that kids love sugar (in fact, we all do!) And the occasional sugary treat is okay. But in order to keep a child’s mouth (and entire body) healthy, your cabinets should be stocked with wholesome snacks. The oral health of kids and adults alike can benefit from foods such as:
- Dairy products, especially yogurt. Calcium is good for building and repairing teeth. Yogurt is also full of probiotics that fight off harmful bacteria. Encourage your child to eat yogurt, but stay away from brands that add extra sugar. Top with fresh fruit for a natural sweetness.
- Baby carrots, celery, or other crunchy vegetables. Crunching on nutrient-rich vegetables such as these increases the flow of saliva. Saliva is essential for keeping your mouth clean. Always keep these kinds of vegetables available for healthy snacking.
- Apples. When you see your child reaching for a candy bar, suggest an apple instead. Many refer to the apple as “nature’s toothbrush.” Chewing on an apple naturally cleanses your teeth of bacteria. Plus, they’re tasty, and kids tend to like them.
- Leafy greens. Some kids will initially turn up their noses at spinach or kale. But if you serve them leafy greens early enough in their lives, eating them will become second-nature. They’re full of healthy nutrients that build strong teeth.
4. Establish Solid, Consistent Routines
Kids are people, and people are creatures of habit. When they realize brushing and flossing are becoming an everyday practice, these practices will be integrated into their everyday routine. In addition, if they see their parents brushing and flossing regularly, they will start to imitate. It’s important for parents to realize they are their kids’ dental health role models.
5. The Obvious
As stated above, brushing and flossing regularly are the lifeblood of your child’s oral health. Remind them to brush at least twice a day for thirty seconds in each corner, and to floss at night. Also remind them that it’s never okay to skip these routines!
Pediatric Dentist in Prescott
At Hicks Dental Group, maintaining your child’s dental health is our passion. Make sure they attend their exams as scheduled. If a question or concern ever arises about your childrens’ dental health, schedule an appointment with us. We are here to maintain good dental health for your whole family.