February is National Children’s Dental Health Month, a great time to talk about the importance of dental health for kids. As parents, it’s our job to ensure that our children have access to healthy teeth and gums. Let’s look at some ways we can make sure our children get off to a good start with their oral health.
Start Early with Regular Cleanings
It’s never too early to start thinking about your children’s oral hygiene. You should take your child to their first dentist appointment when they are one year old or six months after their first tooth appears—whichever comes first. After that, you should plan on taking them in for regular checkups every six months. During these cleanings, the dentist will be able to assess your child’s oral health and make any necessary recommendations.
Set Good Habits at Home
In addition to regular cleanings, there are several things you can do at home to help keep your child's teeth healthy. Make sure they brush twice a day (morning and night) using fluoride toothpaste and floss daily. Encourage them to limit sugary snacks like candy and soda, as these foods can cause cavities if ingested too often. Finally, ensure that your child wears a mouthguard when playing contact sports or engaging in other activities where trauma could occur around the mouth area. This will help protect their teeth from damage.
Help Your Child Feel Comfortable with Dentists
It is important for young children to feel comfortable with dentists so that they will continue going for regular checkups into adulthood. To ensure that this happens, you should create an environment at home where dental hygiene is fun and not something scary or tedious. For example, you could make brushing more enjoyable by playing fun music while they brush or incorporating stuffed animals into the routine so it feels like a game instead of a chore. You could also read books together about dental hygiene or watch educational videos on YouTube about how dental care works in order for your child to understand why taking care of their teeth is important in the long run!
By following these tips during National Children's Dental Health Month and beyond, you'll have taken the first step towards giving your kids the best possible foundation for lifelong oral health! Taking good care of your children's teeth now will set them up well in future years when they might not always be under your direct supervision—so don't hesitate to start making adjustments today! With proper preventative care and education, raising healthy smiles has never been easier!
Northeast Missouri Health Council, Partners for a lifetime of health
Medical, Dental, and Behavioral Clinics in Kirksville, Missouri, Macon, Missouri, Milan, Missouri, and Kahoka, Missouri. Visit our website to find the nearest clinic to you. www.nemohealthcouncil.com