From the first tooth that erupts to the last baby tooth that falls out, developing a strong foundation of oral health starts when you are young. Instilling good oral hygiene habits early on can help your child maintain a healthy smile for life. However, that’s often easier said than done. We’re sharing tips that can help your child keep up their oral care routine and safeguard the health of their teeth and gums.
Be a Good Example
Whenever possible, brush your teeth and floss right along with your child. Since children watch far more than they listen, showing them the behavior, and even talking through what you do, can increase their likelihood of keeping up the habits on their own. Even if you are tired, doing what you can to clean your teeth with them will help.
Let Them Choose Their Tools
One of the best ways for your child to keep up brushing and flossing habits is to let them choose what tools they use. Allow them to select a certain toothbrush color or one that features a character they love. You can also let them choose their toothpaste or floss flavor! Just make sure it’s a brand of toothpaste approved by the American Dental Association.
Encourage Healthy Snacks
Good oral health and hygiene are more than just brushing and flossing, it’s also in what we eat too. Snacks can often lead to choosing foods and drinks that aren’t always that healthy. So, make sure you give your child snacks that strengthen their teeth and gums. Talk about how certain foods help. For example, vegetables like celery act like nature’s floss to clean their gums. Other fibrous foods like apples can keep their teeth clean while dairy products strengthen the tooth enamel.
Read Books About Dental Health
There are a wide variety of books that you can read with your child that talk about dental health and the important role teeth play. Some can appeal to much younger children while others are great for kids already brushing on their own. It can also become a part of your child’s toothbrushing routine (i.e. you read a book after you brush your teeth).
Make the Dentist a Pleasant Experience
At our practice, we see patients as young as 3 years old. We make it as convenient as possible for you with our locations near several schools and late appointments available during the week. More than that, we aim to make the appointment as easy as possible, and your child can even sit on your lap throughout the visit. They’ll end on a high note by getting a sticker and a prize from our treasure box. What matters to us is establishing the dentist as a positive experience so they want to return for treatment throughout their life!
If your child is above the age of 3, and hasn’t had a visit with a dentist in Oakmont, PA, request an appointment at Oakmont Advanced Dentistry by calling 412-828-3311 or request an appointment online.