Cavities occur quite frequently in children. In fact, tooth decay is the most common chronic disease in children aged 6 to 11, according to Center for Disease Control and Prevention. As a parent, it can feel terrible to subject your little one to a dentist's drill. Getting a cavity filled can be scary for a lot of children. That is why it is so important to instill good oral hygiene habits in your child from the start. Here are eight ways to help your child prevent cavities.
Make Brushing Fun
If your child is like most kids, he probably does not get excited to brush his teeth every day. If you make brushing into a fun game, your child will not mind it as much. For example, you could play a fun children's song while your little one brushes his teeth. If your child listens to a catchy tune for two minutes, tooth brushing will not seem as tedious. Also, consider buying your child a flavored toothpaste to use.
Teach Your Child To Floss
All the brushing in the world will not remove plaque from the gaps between teeth. If you teach your little one to floss every day, he will be less likely to deal with cavities. Tell him to carefully floss between each tooth and avoid snapping the floss. If your child snaps floss hard between his teeth, it can lead to receding gums.
Check For Signs Of Dental Decay
It is a good idea to check your child's teeth for signs of dental decay every month. For example, if your child has white or brown spots on his teeth, he may have cavities. It is important to take him to see a pediatric dentist as soon as possible. If the decay gets too severe, it can lead to tooth loss.
Consider Dental Sealants
Is your child prone to cavities no matter how well he brushes and flosses? If so, you should consider dental sealants. These sealants are placed over the surfaces of the teeth and prevent plaque and bacteria from getting in. At your child's next dental checkup, ask his dentist to put dental sealants on his teeth.
Do Not Let Your Child Eat Too Many Sugary Treats
Children love sugar treats, like candy and donuts, but these can do a lot of damage to their teeth. If your little one consumes too much sugar, it can create a breeding ground for bacteria on his teeth. Keep sugary treats out of the house and only allow your child to eat sweet treats on occasion. If your kid is craving something sweet, give him a piece of fruit.
Encourage Your Child To Eat Healthy Foods
A nutritious diet does not just promote a healthy weight; it also can prevent cavities. Encourage your child to eat tooth-friendly foods, such as cheese, apples, celery and oranges, on a regular basis. Explain to him that these foods will keep his teeth healthy and help him avoid tooth decay.
Tell Your Child Never To Share Utensils
Sharing utensils with another person can transmit germs into the mouth and lead to cavities. That is why you should tell your child to never exchange utensils with his friends.
Minimize Juice Beverages
Whether it's made from oranges or apples, juice provides the body with a lot of vitamins. However, juice is highly acidic, which can wear down the enamel of teeth. Only let your child drink juice in moderation and never let him have it before bedtime.
Keeping your child's smile healthy does not have to be difficult. If you follow these helpful tips, you can help your little one avoid cavities.