Jun 17, 2014 - 01:06 PM EST | Posted under: General
It can be an extremely frustrating experience for a parent when their child must receive costly, uncomfortable dental work just because the family failed to establish sound dental care habits right from the beginning. Though getting kids to brush and floss properly each and every day can sometimes be a challenge, the benefits of doing so are immeasurable. By heeding a few simple pieces of advice, every parent can create an environment in which strong dental care practices are the norm.
It may seem obvious, but it bears repeating that children need to brush their teeth no less that two times daily and should also be flossing at least once per day. They also need to make regular visits to an affordable dentist, starting when their very first tooth appears. Parents may also want to consider the option of having a protective dental sealant applied to their children’s teeth that can prevent decay and minimize the risk of cavities.
The way children eat and drink can also go a long way toward preventing dental health issues down the road. First of all, drinks and food items should not be passed among various individuals, even in families. Cavity-causing bacteria are able to travel from one person to the next, so it is best to avoid this practice altogether. Frequent snacking throughout the day, especially when it involves sugary, processed foods and drinks can give bacteria an opportunity to thrive and cause cavities. Brushing and rinsing after snacks, however, can help mitigate the risk.
Drinking large quantities of water, particularly tap water supplemented with fluoride, is one of the best habits to have when it comes to maintaining good oral health. Just about every family dentistry expert would agree that juice consumption should be limited, due to its high levels of sugar and acidity that can harm tooth enamel.
When it comes to food, crisp produce with a high water content is ideal for keeping the mouth hydrated and providing key nutrients at the same time. Sticky foods and those that easily get trapped in the teeth, such as candy, fruit leather, and cookies should be limited, as they tend to foster harmful bacterial growth. Finally, nut butter and cheese can be terrific choices for kids of all ages, because they contain substances that actually work to remineralize the teeth, a benefit that can be difficult to obtain from other sources.