Part 2 of our series on children’s dental health
February is Children’s Dental Health Month.
It’s important to help children understand and learn the importance of good oral health habits!
Below are five recommendations outlined by the American Dental Association’s Mouth Healthy website (www.mouthhealthy.org) that can help make it easier to get kids in the habit of brushing regularly.
1. Set a good Example
Your children learn from you, so set a good example. Make brushing a family affair. The family that brushes together has even more reason to smile.
2. Start a Routine and Stick to It
You may be tempted to let your child skip brushing after a long day or during times when your normal schedule is off (like vacation), but keep at it. The more second nature brushing becomes the easier it will be to make sure your child is brushing twice a day for two minutes.
3. Reward Good Brushing Behavior
What motivates your child? If its stickers, make a reward chart and let him add one every time he brushes. If he’s a reader, let him pick out the bedtime story. Maybe it’s as simple as asking to see that healthy smile, saying “I’m so proud of you” and following up with a huge high five.
4. Go Shopping for Tooth brushing Products
Let your child pick out his own toothbrush and toothpaste. (Choose ones with the ADA Seal of Acceptance.) Letting them buy a character toothbrush might make brushing more fun, and fluoride toothpastes come in a variety of flavors and colors.
5. Have 4 Minutes of Fun
Don’t just set a timer and supervise – make brushing twice a day for two minutes an event! Crank up your child’s favorite song and have a two-minute dance party. Videos or brushing apps may also make that time fly by. (Younger brushers might like these suggested by the ADA.) Try reading a 2-minute story using all your best voices. Whatever you do, get creative and switch things up so brushing time is always a good time.
One More Point — Make regular dentist visits part of the habit.
At Dr. Poz, we love kids. And kids love coming here! Parents appreciate that their child’s dental health is communicated to them and all their questions are answered. Whether it is preventive services, dental treatment, tooth eruption or trauma – questions and concerns are always welcome.