The first years of a child’s life are the most important ones. They are the foundation that shapes your child’s development, future health, and growth.
But, when it comes to the formative years, most parents focus on the development of their kid’s brain. They strive to develop a sense of trust and confidence to help their little ones grow into successful adults. However, most of them neglect one vital aspect that can have a significant impact on their child’s personality, development, and habits: their dental health.
According to recent data, almost a third of five-year-olds suffer from cavities and tooth decay. These problems are entirely preventable.
Because February is the National Children’s Dental Health Month, we’ve decided to share some tips that will help parents care for their kid’s oral health. After all, they are our favorite type of patients.
Teach Your Child Not to Be Afraid of the Dentist
Dentists and dentist appointments are one of the top fears children have. That’s understandable: the dentist’s chair, the bizarre tools, and the smell can feel quite scary to a child, especially if he or she is not prepared for the experience beforehand. Talk to your dentist and see if you can come up with a way of making dentist appointments more of a fun experience for your child rather than a regular traumatic episode.
Get an Early Start
Get your child used to the idea of tooth brushing as soon as they sprout their first tooth. Take your kid to see a dentist by his or her first birthday. Early preventive care can save you a lot of money in the long run. According to one CDC report, dental care costs are 40% lower for children who see a dentist by the age of five.
Teach Good Habits
The easiest way to teach your children how to brush their teeth is by showing them. Teach them the motion, how to rinse and how long they need to do it for to get proper results. Don’t forget to tell them about brushing their teeth at least twice a day. Check on them to make sure that they stick to this routine.
Flossing is another thing you should discuss with them as soon as they have at least two teeth that touch each other. That way, you can show them how to do it.
Give Your Child Control
A great way of making sure your kids stick to all the habits you’ve tried so hard to teach them is to make them feel like they’re in control of the whole process. Tell them that since they are all grown up now, they need to be responsible for themselves.
Of course, that doesn’t mean you should stop supervising them, but make them feel that you trust them and that you’ve handed them an important responsibility. It will surely make a big difference in their behavior.
Diet Is Important
Diet is important for oral health. Sugar, whether from sweets or sugary drinks, plays a significant role and can lead to cavities. Make sure your child eats a well-balanced diet with many vegetables and fruits, and limited portions of sweets.
Teaching your children about the importance of good oral health from a young age can have many benefits they’ll be thankful for when they’re older. So, don’t stop stressing its significance. If your child is still young, try making this learning process as fun as possible. That way, they won’t view it as a chore, but rather as something they’re doing for themselves.