Dental Care For Children: How to Look After Your Kid’s Teeth
Did you know that 1 out of 4 people has had cavities at some point in their lives? Many people get their first cavities during childhood because they haven’t yet learned the importance of dental care. For that reason, if you have a child, you should look after your kid’s teeth and teach him how to care for his teeth on his own as well.
That way, your child won’t have to worry about dental problems such as cavities, tooth decay, or gum disease.
But what does teeth care for children involve and how should you look after your kid’s dental care? Keep reading and learn more about important dental practices below.
Make Sure Your Child Brushes His Teeth Often
Any pediatric dentist will be able to tell you and your child how important it is to brush every day. Why is brushing your teeth so important? It has a lot to do with various strains of bacteria that live in your mouth.
These bacteria love to eat sugar and food particles in general. Once your child eats something and doesn’t brush his teeth, the bacteria will cluster over the surface of his teeth to latch onto the remaining food particles. Once the bacteria start to consume the food particles and sugar, they will produce acid as a byproduct.
This acid is weak and it doesn’t cause any discomfort, but it is strong enough to eat away at your child’s tooth enamel. Tooth enamel is one of the strongest tissues in the human body, but it does have a weakness to acid. If your child hardly ever brushes his teeth, this acid will eventually destroy the outer layers of tooth enamel.
As a result, your child will develop tooth sensitivity because the enamel has become so thin that it can no longer protect the tooth’s inner tissues and nerves from hot or cold substances. Besides tooth sensitivity, your child will also develop cavities, tartar, and tooth decay. All of these problems are important to fix whether your child still has his baby teeth or already has his adult teeth.
The problems are especially harmful when they affect adult teeth, however. This is because when tooth decay becomes severe enough, it can actually destroy the tooth which can lead to loss of the tooth. Fortunately, you can avoid all of these problems as long as you instruct your child to brush his teeth at least twice every day.
That way, the chance of developing tooth decay will diminish.
Teach Your Child How to Floss
Flossing can be difficult for a young child because it requires a higher level of dexterity. However, just because it’s difficult doesn’t mean that your child shouldn’t floss at all. Flossing is arguably as important, if not more so, than brushing, but the problem is that not a lot of people (including adults) floss.
The reason why flossing is important is that floss is able to reach the parts of the teeth that a toothbrush can’t reach. For example, a toothbrush is only able to reach the tops of the teeth as well as the fronts and backs. A toothbrush can’t reach the sides of the teeth but floss is thin enough to be able to accomplish this.
If you ignore the sides of your child’s teeth, food particles can get stuck there and create cavities, decay, and tartar. Tartar comes from plaque which is a sticky substance created by oral bacteria. Plaque in itself is not that harmful and it goes away once your child brushes his teeth.
But if your child does not brush his teeth, the plaque will eventually harden and turn into tartar. Tartar is a very hard substance that tends to build up between teeth and at the base of the teeth. When this happens, it is very difficult to remove the tartar without the help of a pediatric dentist and special tools.
Tartar is also harmful to your child’s oral health because it can irritate the gums and cause gum disease. If gum disease progresses to a certain extent, it can lead to tooth loss.
To show your child how to floss, try buying floss sticks for children. They make it easier for children to learn how to floss. Your child should floss once every day for the best results.
Reduce Your Child’s Sugar Intake
It’s no secret that children love sugar, but when it comes to how to care for a child’s teeth, many parents don’t realize that too much sugar can be detrimental. As mentioned before, sugar can stimulate acid production from oral bacteria that can lead to tooth decay and cavities. But besides that, many sugary foods and drinks contain acid which can be even worse for your child’s dental health.
Sugary sodas and energy drinks in particular are the worst culprits when it comes to cavities and tooth decay. That’s because these drinks not only are full of sugar but acid as well. If your child drinks sodas or energy drinks all day, your child will be bathing his teeth in acid and sugar.
Sticky candy and other sugary substances like peanut butter are also not great for your child’s teeth. A good way to prevent the problems associated with sugary substances is to limit your child’s sugar intake. This doesn’t mean that your child can never eat sugar, but he shouldn’t eat it all the time.
How to Care For Your Kid’s Teeth
Caring for your kid’s teeth doesn’t have to be hard. All you need to do is make sure your child learns how to brush and floss his teeth. Reducing his sugar intake will also help to keep his teeth healthy.
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