Children are natural imitators, so it is logical to assume good dental health could be instilled in kids simply by showing them how to brush their teeth a few times. On the contrary, new reports showing rising tooth decay rates in children indicate that the message of maintaining good oral health has been lost. It seems today that people in general know much more about teeth whitening and other cosmetic dental services than they do about the proper way to brush and floss their teeth. If you want your children to practice exemplary oral health, remember that you are their first and perhaps most important teacher.

baby with toothbrushRoyalty free photo

Use a Rewards Based System

Kids respond well to positive reinforcement, so give them kudos for a job well done when they take dental health seriously. Come up with a way to reward your children when they brush, rinse and floss on their own, but be sure not to encourage them to eat more sweets or sugar. Instead of bribing your children with candy, consider spending more quality time with them one-on-one, or even start a friendly competition if you’re a parent of more than one child. After a time, good dental health will become second nature to your children, and you won’t need to reward them every time they brush their teeth.

Explain How Mouths Stay Healthy

Think about how you can explain the differences between bad and good oral care, then give a description of what happens as a result of each chosen path. It isn’t necessary for you to give your children graphic examples in cases of bad oral hygiene, but it is imperative that you are brutally honest. Your children may be less prone to assume that their teeth will stay healthy on their own once you explain what happens to those who fail to properly care for their teeth. Let your kids see the causes and effects, and allow them to ask questions. This should help them to make informed decisions about their oral hygiene in the future.

Demonstrate Proper Oral Health

Since we already know that showing your kids how to brush a handful of times isn’t enough, consider how you can more effectively demonstrate the basics to them. Brushing your teeth together with your child may be more effective. Realize that your children are going to be watching you even when you’re not aware, so skipping brushing your teeth from time to time can be more serious than you first assumed. Be a great role model for good dental health by making a show of caring for your teeth at all times.

Keep Up With Dentist Appointments

Life with kids can get busy, and you may even need to reschedule dentist appointments from time to time. Ensure that your children know that professional dental care is as important as any other part of their health. Schedule your children to go to the dentist twice per year, and make sure that you don’t put off any important dental procedures for too long. If your kids believe that you think dental care is vital, they are more likely to grow up thinking the same way.

Caring for your child’s teeth is going to be an ordeal until he or she fully grows up. Help your child to get on the right foot by making good dental care a part of both of your daily routines. Simply asking your child if he or she has brushed daily may be enough to inspire proper dental health for life.

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One Comment

  1. F.M says:

    No mention of gums here. Brushing your gums gently with a soft to medium brush is just as important. It is important not to brush too hard or you will damage your gums .By brushing your gums you are stimulating blood flow, like a massage. Red gums are unhealthy, pink gums are healthy. One way to tell if someone is lying about brushing their teeth is the colour of their gums. This should always be done whilst brushing the teeth. Inflammation of the gums – gingivitus will eventually lead to loosening and loss of teeth if not addressed. The gums are the tooths blood supply. If diseased through poor dental hygiene then tooth health is compromised. Caught early, gingivitus can be reversed. Spongy,red, bleeding gums, bad breath, are signs that all is not well.
    Eating apples, raw carrots, celery etc is beneficial to tooth and gum health, thus stimulating blood supply to tissues.
    The tongue should also be brushed more so in adults than children. This muscle is also an indicator of health.
    Dentists can spot early signs of oral cancer as well as the usual dental problems that occur and will encourage treatment of overcrowding by referring children and adults to an orthodontist specialising in correction.
    It is really important to keep dental appointmnets as corrective treatment early on could prevent future dental problems from arising.

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