Questions About Children And Their Dental Hygiene
Dental Hygiene For Your Children, Your Questions Answered
February is National Children’s Dental Health Month. What began as a one-day event in Cleveland, Ohio back in 1941 later became a week-long national event, and in 1981 was extended to a month-long event sponsored by the American Dental Association.
The idea behind this campaign is to promote good oral hygiene and help educate and encourage kids from an early age to be ‘dental aware’ with coloring competitions, health fairs, free dental screenings, museum exhibits and presentations in schools.
Continuing educational programs and prevention awareness for dental hygiene in children will help motivate more parents to recognize the seriousness of children’s dental disease.
Did you know tooth decay (cavities) remains the most common chronic childhood disease in the United States?
Left untreated cavities can cause pain and infection which may then result in other problems with eating or speaking, possibly then having a knock-on effect on their social and learning abilities.
In the US it is said about one in five children aged between five and 11 years have at least one untreated cavity.
The thing is, cavities are preventable. Children living in areas with fluoridated tap water have fewer cavities than those where the water is not fluoridated. Similarly the same has been found with children using fluoride toothpaste.
Dental Sealants can also help prevent cavities. Sealants on permanent molars can reduce the risk of cavities by 80 per cent. Sealants are this year’s theme for National Children’s Dental Health Month entitled ‘Sealants Make Sense.’
So, what are Dental Sealants?
Dental Sealants are thin coatings which are painted on the chewing surface of the back molar teeth. These can help prevent cavities for years as they protect the surface of the tooth blocking out bacteria and food.
Children without sealants between the ages of six and 11 have almost three times more first molar cavities than children with sealants.
What can you do to help with your child’s dental hygiene?
Maintain regular visits to the dentist from an early age as this will help keep your child familiar with the dentist and the dental hygiene procedures. The more time children spend with their dentist, the more comfortable they will be each visit. Here at Bonaventure Dental Care we have experienced dentists who are great with kids of all ages. If you schedule an appointment this month, your child’s next six-monthly appointment will fall just before they go back to school in August.
Also replace their toothbrush every three to four months as frayed bristles are less effective at cleaning. Let kids select their own and choose the toothpaste they like.
Check their brushing technique. Remember two minutes, twice a day. Maybe buy a cute timer or buzzer to make it fun. Teach them also that flossing is fun! Do it with them as part of a regular routine.
To help maintain healthy gums with babies you can wipe their gums twice a day with a soft, clean cloth after feeding and just before bed to wipe away any bacteria or sugars.
Orthodontics – when is the right time?
Traditionally parents don’t worry about their kid’s teeth until they are teens. But the American Association of Orthodontists advises that kids should have their first orthodontic screening by age seven when they have typically lost several of their baby teeth and the dentist can see how their permanent teeth are coming in.
This can be the ideal time to identify problems such as crossbites, overbites, or crowding and early orthodontic treatment can help avoid more complex treatment further down the line.
At Bonaventure Dental Care we offer family dentistry with regular cleanings, fluoride treatments, dental hygiene and sealants, cavity identification and fillings and orthodontics.
If you’d like more information or have any questions about dentistry for children please visit our page here or get in touch with us at the dental office– we’ll be happy to help.