When you’re raising kids, there are so many things you have to worry about. From their safety to their grades in school, and whether they’re eating healthy foods, it’s easy to forget one of the most important things of all — their oral health. But it’s crucial to keep a close eye on your children’s oral health to make sure that their teeth stay strong and healthy throughout their lives. Here are five tips from your pediatric dentist in Chattanooga to help you keep your kids’ teeth strong and healthy.
1. Bedtime Brushing
For many families, brushing teeth can be a nightly battle. That’s because some kids don’t like brushing their teeth, while others simply aren’t used to it yet. However, thoroughly brushing teeth at bedtime can not only help protect against tooth decay and cavities, but it can also help keep teeth strong and healthy.
2. Flossing Keeps Decay Away
Even if you have a brushing routine down, it’s still important for kids to floss their teeth regularly. Flossing is great for kids because it helps remove food stuck between teeth. If food particles are left behind, they can easily cause cavities and eat away at the protective tooth enamel. Some kids may need help flossing until they have the dexterity to do it by themselves properly. Talk with your pediatric dentist in Chattanooga about how to help teach your little one how to floss.
Everyone, including kids, should see their dentist at least twice a year for a checkup and professional dental cleanings. These visits help remove any plaque buildup and identify any potential problems early. Plus, your pediatric dentist may also recommend an added layer of protection in the form of sealants or fluoride treatments.
4. Eat Healthily
Besides practicing good oral hygiene routines, what kids eat also plays a role in their dental health. Foods rich in calcium like cheese, yogurt, or leafy greens may strengthen your child’s teeth by building up enamel. Calcium-rich foods help ward off cavities since they create a layer of protection between teeth and acids that attack tooth enamel. Additionally, it’s important for all of us to drink plenty of water throughout the day. Water helps neutralize plaque acids that could cause decay.
5. Take It Easy On The Juice
Some juices can be packed with nutrients like vitamin C. However, most juices also contain high levels of sugar. You can try diluting juice with water to help counteract the sugar content, but it’s best if juice is enjoyed in moderation. Your pediatric dentist also doesn’t recommend sending your child to bed with a bottle of juice or even milk as this can allow the sugars to coat the teeth over a long period of time. Water is always best.
Studies show that kids who have better oral health habits throughout childhood are more likely to have healthy teeth into adulthood. We recommend that all kids see a pediatric dentist as soon as their first tooth erupts or no later than their first birthday. This will help get them comfortable with the dentist and set them up for success.