Helping your child to develop good oral habits will help them throughout their life. These habits are necessary to maintain healthy teeth and gums. They involve practices like brushing twice daily, flossing, and having routine dental exams.
Getting your child to prioritize oral health may not be easy. Sometimes, kids do not like brushing their teeth because their teeth and gums hurt when they do. That could be a sensitivity problem with their teeth and gums, or your child may need more gentle brushing methods.
Working with your child's dentist can help you better care for your child's oral health. To get you started, here are things you can do to help your child keep their mouth healthy.
Good oral habits learned early last a long time. So, kids should learn to clean their teeth and gums as early as possible, even during infancy. You can start by cleaning your infant's gums with a moist cloth after feedings. Then progress towards creating a routine your baby will follow as they grow.
Also, dental visits in your baby's early days will make them comfortable and familiar with the appointments. Dentists recommend taking kids to their first dental appointment after they turn one. Help your child get the basics down by introducing healthy oral habits early.
Once your child is old enough to use toothpaste, toothbrush, and floss, allow them to pick their items. Your child may want a flavored toothpaste or a toothbrush that features their favorite color or character. Just ensure the toothpaste is a brand that the American Dental Association approves.
Food plays a significant role in ensuring healthy teeth and gums. Snacking can often lead kids to pick unhealthy foods and drinks. Thus, you want to ensure your child eats foods that build their teeth and gum’s strength. Fruits and vegetables, for instance, act like natural floss, while dairy items can strengthen the enamel.
Also, encourage your child to drink enough water every day. Water washes away leftover sugar and food debris in your mouth that disease-causing bacteria love to eat.
Introduce books about dental hygiene to your child's book collection. You can read various books with your child about oral hygiene and the importance of teeth. Some books are great for toddlers, and others may appeal to older kids.
Your child's experiences during dental visits should be pleasant. Pleasant experiences make oral care fun and may set your child up for a lifetime of good oral habits.
When looking for the right pediatric dentist, look for someone who makes oral care fun. The right pediatric dentist has an office well-equipped for children that will make you and your little one feel calm and relaxed in the exam room.
Please help your child keep their teeth and gums healthy and avoid dental issues by following good oral health practices. Consider your pediatric dentist your partner in helping your child have healthy teeth and smile as they grow.
For more information on helping kids keep their gums healthy with good oral habits, contact the Pediatric Dental Group at our office in Honolulu, Hawaii - (808) 593-8828 or Lihue, Hawaii - (808) 245-2131.