Saturday, July 19, 2014

Teaching Children Good Oral Health Habits While They're Young

Parents often struggle with determining what to teach their children and when it is best to let them figure things out on their own. In the area of oral hygiene, family dentists and cosmetic dentists would both agree that the younger, the better.

Children learn many basic things from their parents, some by observation. But instruction often proves to be a better method to teaching a child the proper way to do things. Engagement is an effective tool many family dentists and cosmetic dentists employ with child patients in order to familiarize them with the process of oral checkups and dentistry-based procedures. The same can be true of teaching everyday oral hygiene practices.

Inform Your Children:

Explaining how to brush, floss, and care for one's teeth and gums is a good opener. For some children, entering into a conversation over the possible health penalties should they falter in regular care may not be a concept they're ready to appreciate or even fully grasp. Focus more on the hows of oral hygiene, as most family dentists are effective in explaining the finer consequences of failing in ones oral hygiene without alarming the child unnecessarily.

Demonstrate for Your Children:

Allow your children to see just how you brush, floss, and care for your teeth on a regular day. This is a point where children may get curious as to why you brush in patterns, where exactly they should begin, and how long would they have to brush before they're certain that they have finished. These answers can be as short or long as you feel are appropriate for your child, but keep in mind that demonstrating responses is often more effective in communicating an answer rather than simply giving one.

Assist Your Children:

While they are learning, many children will need assistance or even just a bit of observation while they are brushing. This serves an assurance to them that they are caring for their teeth in the right way. And it assures parents that their children are caring for their teeth properly.

If you witness your child taking "shortcuts," or brushing too aggressively, or not vigorously enough, don't hesitate to manually assist them in the actual brushing. Just be certain that you explain why you are doing what you are doing when they ask.

Things to Keep in Mind:

The way by which children learn to brush is an important in the growth and development of their teeth, gums, and their overall oral health. Teaching a gentle circular pattern of brushing along the teeth and gums is proven to be best for the removal of plaque and food particles.

Use age-appropriate brushes for your children. Bristles on adult toothbrushes are thicker and stronger than those made for children. Many adult toothbrushes can be damaging on baby teeth.

For children under twenty-four months, fluoride-free toothpaste is best for them to use. While fluoride is essential to oral health, those younger than twenty-four months can imbibe the toothpaste, which can be harmful. And when children are old enough for toothpaste, ensure that they are using appropriate amounts for their teeth.

Teaching good oral health habits to children requires patience and consistent training. If you are seeking professional dental advice for your family, it's time to call Shumway Dental Care. Their Chandler dentists will ask you questions, examine you, and determine exactly what needs to be done to get you back to normal. Call today for an appointment. Visit
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