Attempting to teach your child good oral hygiene habits will be challenging and require plenty of patience from you. You also have to overcome the fear of the unknown in the child’s mind by taking him or her to a pediatric dentist for regular checkups and examinations. It is the key to the life of the child to maintain a healthy smile.
A pediatric dentist or even a children dentist can provide you some valuable tips that you should get the child to follow to improve their dental health. Mentioned in this article are some tips that are provided by experts specifically for parents of children that want to encourage them to develop good oral hygiene habits. The tips provided do not absolve the parents from supervising the children until they are fully capable of taking care of their dental health themselves. This is just an informative article to make it easier for parents to teach good oral hygiene habits to their tiny ones that are often uncooperative.
How Can Parents Convince Their Children to Follow Good Oral Hygiene Habits?
Leading by Example Is a Good Way to Start
Parents should show the children that practicing good oral health can be fun by demonstrating proper habits themselves. Children love to mimic and sooner or later will pick up the habits themselves to begin enjoying them.
Choose a Children Dentist Liked by the Family and the Child
The fear of the dentist can be eliminated by choosing to visit a dentist that you’re comfortable with along with the child. The experience should be enjoyable for everyone and make the child believe dentists’ visits are fun.
Visit the Dentist Regularly
Take the child to the dentist every six months or as recommended for exams and routine cleanings. The visits are not just good for the mouth but will also help the child to develop a comfort level with the dentist.
Remind Children to Brush
Ask the children if they have brushed after a meal or just before going to bed. The question may also be posed to them before leaving for school.
Encourage Children to Brush at School
A travel toothbrush can conveniently be packed into the child’s backpack to ensure he or she brushes after having lunch or any snacks at school. It will teach the child the importance of brushing after every meal.
The Importance of Flossing Must Also Be Taught
Brushing alone will not remove all the food particles and debris in the mouth, but teaching them flossing after brushing can do that and also help to prevent gum disease. Problems with gums can lead to other health complications later in life.
Ensure That the Child Doesn’t Skip Breakfast
Evidence is mounting that children who have a heavy breakfast that is rich in proteins do not crave for sweets later in the day. However, it is the responsibility of parents to ensure that the child has a heavy breakfast first thing in the morning.
Encourage Children to Use a Straw for Having Sodas
Children love carbonated drinks that are full of sugar, but having them use a straw can reduce the exposure of their teeth to the harmful substance.
Provide Them with a Sugar-Free Diet
Replacing sugary snacks and beverages with healthy treats is not difficult. Parents must be looking forward to substituting a sugary diet with alternatives like fruits, cheese, crackers, and water.
Healthy Habits Should Be Rewarded
Once in a while, it proves beneficial to leave small treats from the tooth fairy as a reward for the child for practicing good oral hygiene tips.
Parents cannot assume their children will follow the tips provided unless they are supervised. They can be encouraged to follow the instructions with the reward. However, children are prone to forgetting easily and are unlikely to remember the tips unless they are reminded constantly without harassing them.
Children that practice dental care tips not only invest in their oral health but also in their overall health. Evidence is available to prove that children as young as two years old have developed cavities just because they could not or did not follow proper oral hygiene tips. Children are stubborn in these aspects, and unless they are coaxed by their parents are unlikely to take good care of their dental health. Using the tips mentioned in this article can only make it easier for parents to ensure they don’t have to visit their dentist with a problem involving the dental health of the child.