29th May 2018

Dental Care for Kids: How to Teach Children Good Habits

Making sure your child keeps their teeth clean on a daily basis is very important for their development. Allowing your child to neglect their teeth can lead to decay and cavities which will mean they will need dental treatment from a young age. The best thing you can do is teach your kids good habits that will stick with them throughout their life!

Why is dental care for kids so important?

Good dental care for kids is all about developing a good routine. It’s important that they learn this early, as they will need to be well-practiced when their adult teeth emerge. It’s also really important that they don’t have to have any unnecessary dental work as this can lead the child to develop a fear of the dentist. By helping your child to form good habits from a young age, you will be helping them to take care of their teeth for life.

How can I encourage them to brush?

We all know that getting a child to brush their teeth can be difficult, especially if you are competing with far more fun activities like toys and books. Developing a bedtime routine from a young age is the best way to ensure they instinctively reach for their toothbrush before they go to bed. Try the following tricks to make dental care for kids more fun!

Try playing a song

Making dental care fun is the best way to make sure your kids want to brush their teeth twice a day. There are plenty of songs on YouTube that are about brushing your teeth. And the best part is that the majority will be 2 minutes long, so they will know how long they need to brush for! It will not only make it a fun activity, but it will also make sure they brush their teeth for the right amount of time.

Invest in an electric toothbrush

Kids love new things to play with, so a fancy electric toothbrush might be just the thing you need to get them excited about brushing their teeth. You have to remember that children’s hands aren’t as coordinated as grownups. This means that brushing those hard to reach areas will be more difficult for kids. By investing in a kid’s electric toothbrush, they will have the novelty factor, AND it will help them to reach their whole mouth!

Healthy diet

When it comes to practicing good dental care for kids, a healthy diet must be followed to ensure their teeth stay strong. If you allow your child to indulge in too many sugary food and drinks, it can cause cavities and other dental problems. By teaching them why certain foods are bad for their teeth, they will learn to make better choices as they grow up. You can also explain that treats are okay occasionally, but only if they promise to brush! Food and drinks containing sugar should be limited and are best given at mealtimes; the risk of developing decay also increases as the amount and frequency of sugar consumption rises. Some foods don’t have the word ‘sugar’ in the ingredients list on their packaging, but still have sugar in them – it’s just labelled in a different way. Hidden sugars usually end in ‘ose’ and the nearer the start of the list they are, the bigger the amount included. Look out for: sucrose, dextrose, maltose, fructose, lactose, glucose and honey, and take particular care with cereal bars, flavoured yoghurts, fruit flakes/bars, juice – including juice labelled ‘no added sugar’.

Visit the dentist regularly

Your dentist will be able to give lots of advice for good dental care for kids. Going to the dentist does not need to be scary. In fact, going regularly when they are young will help them to be more familiar the their dentist and stop them developing a phobia. By visiting the dentist regularly, any problems will be spotted early and it will prevent them becoming a problem.

If you’d like to book an appointment for your child, get in touch today!

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