Having good teeth for life starts with early dental care. In fact, dentists recommend cleaning babies’ gums with a wet, soft cloth every day—even before their first tooth comes. This is done to get rid of bacteria and plaque that can damage infant teeth as they grow out.
This practice of diligent dental care should be continued through the years, and most especially during the time when your child has started eating sugar and other types of food that may affect teeth and gum health. Good dental hygiene should also be complemented by regular visits to the dentist.
If you ask any trusted dentist in Vancouver, they will tell you that training your children to be disciplined about taking care of their teeth offers a wide range of benefits. Having strong, beautiful teeth and healthy gums can impact not just their appearance but also their personal development. Studies have shown that having a great smile during childhood is associated with good speech development, healthy self-esteem and social skills, and overall health.
Here are some of the things you can do to ensure your kids will develop healthy teeth:
Tell them the reason why
To effectively teach your kids the proper way to brush and floss their teeth at a young age, make sure you start with building a solid foundation. Take time to explain why regularly cleaning their teeth is important and how it can benefit them. They will most likely be willing to abide by your oral hygiene “rules” when they understand the reason why.
Teach by example
Train them with brushing, flossing (and later, using mouthwash) by doing each activity step by step. You can brush your teeth and let them watch, or you can even use a doll or a stuffed toy to demonstrate the steps. Talk to a dentist or do your research so when they ask questions, you’re ready to provide helpful and clear answers.
Have a strategy
Cultivating healthy oral care habits takes time and patience. Adopt techniques that are suited to the age and personality of your kids to train them and encourage them to take care of their teeth even without prodding from you. This includes not just brushing and flossing their teeth regularly, but also other habits that prevent tooth decay and strengthen oral health: avoiding too much sugar, eating nutritious food, and visiting the dentist regularly.
Get help from a trusted expert
Find a dentist who is great with children, so your small ones can see each visit as a positive and interesting experience, making it easier for you to commit to appointments regularly. Even if you have already established good oral care habits at home, only a dentist can really determine the true state of your child’s teeth and detect if there are problems that need to be fixed or prevented.