You may find it difficult as a parent to get your kid to brush their teeth twice a day. It’s common to feel overwhelmed by the whole process, regardless of whether your toddler doesn’t like to brush their teeth at all or wants to do it by themselves and you are not sure if they’ll brush their teeth properly. One of the ways to prepare your child for a lifetime of the best health is to learn how to enjoy the process while establishing their at-home dental care routine, suggests dr. Amit Gupta, Senior Consultant Pediatrician & Neonatologist, Motherhood Hospital, Noida,
Maintaining proper oral hygiene is imperative for overall health of the child, therefore parents should pay close attention to the dos and don’ts as well as their own general oral hygiene. Having an oral hygiene routine for kids is important, as having healthy teeth and gums is crucial for things like speech clarity, chewing habits, and a perfect smile.
Do’s and Don’ts of Kids’ Oral Hygiene
Let’s look at some suggestions by Dr. Gupta to maintain a healthy oral hygiene.
Do show your kids the right way to brush
When the kids are home, always pay attention to how you brush. Make sure to brush your teeth at least twice a day for two minutes each time for your oral hygiene and to set an example for your kids. Make it a point to brush in front of your kids as well. You could even want to establish a routine of having everyone brush their teeth in the morning and before bed. Kids may try to mimic your precise brushing technique, so hold your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to the gums and gently move it back and forth in short and steady strokes.
Also Read: 10 Myths And Facts On Oral Hygiene
Do ensure your child is flossing and brushing properly
While choosing a brush for your child, choose a toothbrush with soft bristles and change it every three months. Make sure your child brushes each tooth thoroughly if he/she likes to brush their teeth themselves. Floss your child’s teeth as early as age two and a half, once per day, to clean the space between the two teeth. For children’s use, floss sticks are preferable than traditional string floss.
Also Read: All About Flossing That No One Has Told You Before
Do visit the dentist regularly
You must bring your child to the dentist for a fluoride treatment at least once a year so that they can receive extra dental care. Children who have more severe oral health problems, like gum disease, extensive tooth decay, or infections that keep coming back, may set up more frequent treatment schedules with the pediatric dentist.
Do make sure your child eats a balanced diet.
It’s critical that you keep a careful check on your child’s eating habits. Maintaining a healthy diet might help someone avoid dental issues like tooth decay. To prevent complex effects later, it is best to instill in children’s thoughts early on the importance of limiting their intake of foods high in sugar. Dairy products like milk and yogurt that are high in calcium and green leafy vegetables are a couple of foods that are good for oral health and should be consumed regularly.
Don’t ignore baby teeth
Baby teeth are not merely temporary teeth and they need to be brushed regularly as well. They are equally as crucial to your child’s future oral health as permanent teeth are, and as they develop lifelong dental hygiene practices.
Don’t give your child sugary food and drinks very often
Though children enjoy sweets and sugary drinks, ensure that your child doesn’t consume sugary food and drinks very often. It is better to plan and store healthy snacks at home to avoid sugar cravings. This will help in limiting your child’s teeth’s exposure to sugar throughout the day. Avoid giving juice or milk to your young children before bedtime; this will only undo the progress made by a decent brushing practice!
Don’t reinforce fears
Most people fear or are not comfortable visiting the dentist. By introducing your child to the dentist at a young age, you may be able to eliminate the fear your child may have of visiting a dentist. Additionally, a pediatric dentist will be specifically qualified to make children feel more at ease because of their special training. As they get older, your child will realize that the dentist, like their pediatrician, is there to keep them healthy.