Did you know that 20% of children and 13% of adolescents have at least one decaying tooth in need of treatment? While this problem is shocking, it’s also preventable.
If you want your children to have a healthy smile, teaching them about proper teeth care is vital. Start at an early age so they can maintain their dental hygiene well into adulthood. Even if your kid is already a teenager, it’s still not too late.
To help you, here are our top teeth care tips for children and teens.
- Establish Good Brushing Habits
Once your child is in the habit of brushing often, it’ll stick with them forever. Remind them to brush their teeth thoroughly twice daily — in the morning and at night. Doing so removes plaque, bacteria, and food debris that would otherwise lead to dental problems.
As infants, opt for a toothpaste that’s safe to swallow. As they get older and know to spit it out, you can switch to one that has protective fluoride.
- Avoid Eating Too Much Sugar
Sugar is known for destroying teeth. It weakens tooth enamel, which results in cavities.
If you want to help your kids care for their teeth, avoid giving them too much sugar. It’s fine in moderation, but constant sugary treats shouldn’t be allowed. And, after eating any, they should brush their teeth.
- Wear a Mouthguard During Sports
Does your child or teen participate in sports? Even if it’s not a high-contact one, they should wear a mouthguard. This is one of the most overlooked teeth care tips, but it’s essential for protection.
While it may be uncomfortable to wear, a mouthguard protects your kid from suffering dental injuries if they get hit in the mouth or face. You can buy one or get it custom-made from the dentist.
- Consider Braces as Early as Possible
If your child has crooked teeth or an overbite, look into braces as soon as you can. Most people think teeth straightening is for teens only, but you can actually get them once all the baby teeth are gone.
Your dentist should be able to refer you to an orthodontist. They’ll help you with choosing braces for kids and can start the process.
- Start Flossing Once a Day
Flossing is just as critical for teeth care as brushing. So, get your child or teen in the habit of doing it at least once a day. Floss helps remove additional plaque and food debris that a toothbrush can’t always reach.
- Take a Regular Trip to the Dentist
Schedule your kid for a dentist appointment twice a year. By doing so, they’ll get their mouth examined often, so if any problems arise, they can get caught early. Plus, you can get helpful advice about teeth care from their dentist.
Proper Teeth Care is a Must for Kids and Teens
A healthy smile is possible with proper teeth care. Teach your children and teens all about it so they can maintain strong and shiny teeth well into adulthood. Begin with these tips, and you’ll be off to a great start!
For additional teeth care tips for all ages, check out other articles on our website.