One of your greatest challenges as a parent is teaching your child about dental hygiene. Between finding the right toothbrush to taste-testing a variety of toothpastes till your child finds the perfect flavor, acquiring the tools and techniques to maintain a healthy mouth is an investment in both time and money. However, with persistence and patience, teaching your child about dental hygiene is an important parental responsibility. Here is a quick guide to starting a dental hygiene routine with your child.
Teach your child about the benefits of avoiding sugary drinks and snacks. Everyone loves a sweet treat, but too many lead to cavities, and no child wants the dental work involved in getting a filling (or two!). Reward your child with treats that promote dental and physical health.
Allow your child to take ownership of his dental hygiene. Let your child browse the dental products aisle at the grocery store, and allow him to pick out a toothbrush, toothpaste, and mouthwash with his favorite cartoon characters. By taking responsibility for his choices, your child will be more likely to use these items.
Finally, monitor your child’s mouth. You’ve got to pay close attention to spot dental problems before they escalate into emergency status. Check for an increase in bad breath. This is often a signal of tooth decay. Watch for the sounds and signs of tooth grinding (also known as bruxism). Stress and poor sleep can lead a child to unknowingly grind her teeth. Persistent grinding can also indicate temporomandibular disease (TMJ) or hyperactivity. Each of these dental problems requires a visit to the dentist for further examination.
Happy kids have healthy teeth! Let the dental team at Livonia Family Dental help put a bright and shiny smile on your child’s face!