Dental Health for Kids: 3 Habits to Instill in Your Child

If you’re a parent in Friendswood, La Porte, Seabrook, Pasadena or Dickinson, the team at Big Picture Pediatric Dentistry is here to help keep your child’s smile happy and healthy.

Proper dental care and oral hygiene start at home, and these three critical oral health habits will encourage a lifetime of positive health:  

1. Proper Brushing And Flossing

First and foremost, it’s important to make sure that your kids are brushing and flossing properly. As soon as your child’s first tooth erupts, begin brushing their teeth with a soft-bristled toothbrush. To make sure your child’s teeth are free from oral bacteria, brush them at least twice per day for 2 minutes. Around the age of 6 (or when your child has enough manual dexterity to tie their own shoelaces), they can begin brushing their teeth on their own.

When your kids start brushing on their own, supervise them to make sure they are using proper technique and that they are actually brushing their teeth. After about age 11, you can usually let your kids brush unsupervised.

Flossing once per day is another critical part of your child’s oral hygiene routine. You’ll have to do this for your child until they are about 10 years old since flossing is a bit more complex and harder to learn than brushing.

2. Healthy Dietary And Eating Habits

Healthy eating habits can also help keep your children’s teeth healthy. As a rule, you should steer them away from beverages like soda, sweetened tea, and juices, in favor of water and milk.

Additionally, reduce the number of sweet foods and simple starches, such as candy and potato chips, that your children consume. Snacking, in general, should also be discouraged, because constant food intake encourages the formation of the bacteria that cause decay and gum disease. For more information about how you can keep your child’s mouth healthy with proper eating habits, schedule a consultation with Dr. Brock today!

3. Discouraging Nail-Biting And Using Teeth As Tools

Nail-biting is a very bad habit and can damage your child’s cuticles as well as their teeth. If your child bites their nails, you may be able to use an over-the-counter anti-nail biting treatment to mitigate this habit. By coating your child’s nails with the treatment, which tastes bitter but is otherwise harmless, they’ll be less inclined to continue biting their nails.

In addition, it’s important to discourage your child from using their teeth as tools to do things like open bags, tear tape, and for other such purposes. This can cause damage to the teeth.

Need More Information? Schedule Your Consultation Today!

At Big Picture Pediatric Dentistry, we focus on encouraging great life-long dental habits in our patients. Our team will help you learn more about caring for your child’s teeth and how to encourage your family to take better care of their teeth and gums. To schedule a consultation at our office, feel free to contact us at (281) 461-7470, or feel free to stop by our office near Clear Lake, Webster, and League City at 17150 El Camino Real, Houston TX 77058.

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