Maintaining dental hygiene in children is as important as in adults. Do you know that milk teeth are more susceptible to cavities that can spread more quickly than permanent teeth? Therefore, it is important to make children aware of the importance of oral hygiene from the beginning. They must be taught the basic daily oral hygiene routine and activities to keep their teeth healthy and strong. Some of the basic dental care habits that parents must encourage in their children include:
- Brushing teeth twice daily
- Follow a healthy diet
- Visit a dentist for a regular dental checkup
Tips to Maintain Children’s Dental Hygiene
Here are some of the key tips that parents can use to maintain the dental hygiene of their children, have a look:
- Try Weaning the Babies Off the Bottle At the Earliest: Many people are not aware of the consequences of putting their baby to sleep with a bottle of milk. When a baby sleeps with a milk bottle in her mouth, it causes milk and sugar to remain on the surface of the tooth for a long period. This increases the chances of tooth decay, also known as ‘Nursing Bottle Caries.’ Therefore, to avoid such a situation, it is advisable to start weaning babies off the bottle as early as possible.
- Encourage Children to Brush Their Teeth Twice: Having their children brush twice a day seems like a big task for many parents. Many children feel brushing up daily is quite a boring task and avoid doing it on their own. What parents can do in such a case is they can add some with the brushing activity. Parents can brush in front of their children, sing, dance, and do other entertaining activities while brushing to attract their kid’s attention and follow them. Kids that are a little older can be encouraged to do brushing by offering them some reward or positive reinforcement.
- Apply Correct Technique: Parents are advised not to brush their children’s teeth forcefully with the wrong technique as it can harm the child’s oral health. Always apply the correct technique while brushing. Make sure to use a soft-bristle toothbrush specially made for children as per their age. Also, make them do flossing with a floss stick twice daily. These days, parents can easily get quality oral health products like age-specific fluoridated toothpaste that can be used for children over one year old. For babies under one year, a wet toothbrush is enough to clean the teeth.
- Take Good Care of Milk Teeth: Several parents worldwide think that taking care of permanent teeth is very important and think that milk teeth don’t require enough care. This doesn’t seem right. In some children, milk teeth stay for more than 12 years. If not given enough care, the milk teeth can catch the cavity at any age and worsen over time. Besides, as soon as a child reaches their mixed dentition phase, the cavity issue from the milk tooth could quickly spread to a permanent tooth. Therefore, always make sure to start your children’s dental care hygiene routine as early as possible. Another important thing to note here is that milk teeth are the base that helps the child in their early years of development. If any of these teeth are lost early for some reason, the permanent teeth may start growing in the wrong way, leading to many dental problems like crowding, crooked teeth, overbites, and others. Therefore, taking good care of milk teeth is the best way to avoid such situations.
- Keep An Eye Over the First Signs Of Poor Dental Hygiene: Parents must keep an eye on their children’s dental hygiene. If you notice any signs of poor dental condition, you must take your child to a dentist immediately. Some of the early signs of poor dental hygiene can be a child not eating properly, getting irritable while eating, food getting stuck between teeth, swelling in the gums, a black spot or hole on the surface of the teeth, etc. Visiting a specialist can help to detect the dental problem at an early stage. To treat the condition, parents must follow all the dentist’s instructions and the prescribed products or medicines.
- Visit Your Dentist For Regular Dental Checkup: Visiting a dentist for a regular dental checkup is not only applicable for adults but children as well. Parents can schedule their children’s appointments along with their scheduled visits. When children see their parents or some older sibling sitting comfortably on the dental chair, they feel at ease and relax.
Teeth are precious. Being a parent, it’s your responsibility to teach your children a good dental care routine. You must start implementing your child’s best dental care habits because milk teeth are equally important as permanent ones. Also, in general dentistry for children, it is advisable that a child have a regular dental visit every six months or recommended by the dentist to prevent various dental problems like cavities, tooth plaque, etc. Besides, keep a check on the sugar intake of your children. Encourage them to do regular brushing and flossing. Taking good care of dental health from the start will help to keep dental health in good condition for a long time.