Teaching your kids about good children’s dental health early on not only ensures proper oral development but also promotes a positive mindset towards visiting the dentist and correct oral health for the rest of their lives.
How can parents help teach their kids about children’s dental health?
Children’s dental health is vital to their development, and creating a positive attitude towards dental care can help parents teach their children to maintain a healthy oral hygiene routine. Starting good oral habits early on in life, in terms of education about diet and hygiene routines, is key to teaching children how and why to properly manage this themselves.
Until these skills are developed, parents should brush their child’s teeth themselves, twice a day minimum. Once your child reaches the age of 7 or 8, brushing should become a supervised activity to allow them to learn these independent skills correctly.
Toothbrushes marketed towards young children, such as Oral-B’s children’s range of manual and electric toothbrushes, are often softer and smaller in terms of bristles, and sometimes feature rounded or polished edges. This is a vital step in your child’s dental care to ensure the experience of brushing is as comfortable as possible for the teeth and gums whilst also providing effective cleaning.
What is the difference between child and adult dental products?
Another important aspect of your child’s dental care is to ensure you are teaching them about the correct products to use. As well as using a softer toothbrush for small mouths with delicate teeth and gums, parents should ensure children are using toothpaste with lower fluoride content. This is to prevent overexposure of fluoride from diet and dental products in order to avoid white spots developing on the teeth, known as fluorosis.
Fluorosis starts during the first 8 years of life whilst permanent teeth are being formed, but develops cosmetically during adult life, causing permanent discolouration. We recommend looking into kid-friendly toothpaste such as Hello’s range of kids toothpaste, Jack N’ Jill’s range or Colgate’s children’s range.
Don’t sugarcoat it!
A key aspect of your child’s dental health is diet. Whilst plenty of food, drinks and snacks designed towards children’s lunchboxes contain high amounts of hidden sugars, it is best to cut down on snacks such as sweets, fruity squash drinks, dried and citrus fruits and starchy snacks such as crisps. These can be swapped out for more nutritious but tasty options such as rice cakes, breadsticks, plain yoghurts and cream cheeses or sugar-free jellies. After all, the tooth fairy doesn’t like rotten teeth!
Most importantly – have fun with it
Children’s dental health is increasingly important, so if your child finds brushing difficult or boring, why not try stimulating electric toothbrushes that feature vibrations or sound to encourage the formation of routines, or musical timers to make the experience more enjoyable?
We all have a fond nostalgia for the tooth fairy, and it’s a great way to stimulate your child’s imagination whilst also highlighting the importance of dental care. By having fun with it we encourage healthy habits in a positive and exciting way whilst promoting good dental health for children.
National Tooth Fairy day on 28th February can be a great opportunity for your family to learn more about the history of the tooth fairy whilst incorporating that element of fun – it really can make a difference to your child’s dental care when rewards are involved!
Teaching yourself and your family about positive dental routines is quick and easy through the use of the library tab on the Smiletronix app, featuring oral tips about habits and lifestyle choices you can make to improve your health and hygiene. Explore all the ways Smiletronix can benefit your family’s dental routine right here.