It’s a question many parents have: how do I keep my kids’ teeth healthy? Now you can display this cute dental patient education sign in your practice, share it with your neighborhood schools, or print it out and send it home with your young patients.
Top 10 Tips for Keeping Kids’ Teeth Healthy
1 Brush your teeth in front of your children. Children mimic what they see, so teach them by example.
2 Establish healthy habits early. Avoid giving children snacks or drinks other than water once they’ve brushed their teeth. Otherwise, the sugar that’s in the food and beverages can sit on the teeth overnight, leading to tooth decay. Even the milk or formula in a baby bottle can lead to decay, according to the American Dental Association.
3 Start brushing once the first tooth comes in. The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends using a smear of fluoride toothpaste for children under two, then increasing to a pea-sized amount once the child is old enough to spit.
4 Wear a mouthguard. The American Dental Association recommends mouthguards for contact sports such as football, basketball, and wrestling as well as for gymnastics, skating, and other non-contact activities.
5 Brush for two minutes a day, twice a day. Sing a silly song, play a video on your smart phone, or pretend the toothbrush is playing hide-and-seek with sugar bugs to make the time pass quickly. There are several brands of toothbrushes such as quip that come with timers built in.
6 Apply fluoride. Professionally-applied fluoride varnish can prevent about one-third of decay in baby teeth, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
7 Make brushing fun. There are many cool toothbrushes from ones that are character-themed to ones that play music.
8 Seal out decay. Applying dental sealants to the chewing surfaces of back teeth can prevent cavities. The sealants act as a barrier, preventing plaque and bacteria from penetrating the enamel.
9 Eliminate gummy candy. Gummies, junk food, soda, and even sports drinks are loaded with sugar that can cause cavities.
10 Floss once a day. As soon as two teeth touch each other, it’s time to start flossing between them. Flossing removes food and bacteria that’s stuck between the teeth. Healthy habits start with patient education.
Whether you’re sharing this sign in your dental practice, with your patients, or in your community, we hope it brings a smile!
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