Creating Good Dental Habits at an Early Age
by Angela C. Canfield, DDS
It’s always a good time to think about the health of your children’s teeth. The routines you set in stone now will carry your children into adulthood and set the stage for healthy teeth.
When it comes to those teeth, a tried-and-true parental friend comes in handy: routine. Brushing and flossing should be a part of your child’s daily routine in the morning and before bed.
But additional routines are needed too. I’m talking about a twice-a-year dental checkup. You don’t want a dental visit to become a time of trauma and dread because of a dental emergency. A positive, cheerful visit with a dentist who understands children’s needs and is experienced in dealing with them should be as much a part of a child’s life as checkups with a pediatrician, back-to-school supply shopping or a photo with Santa.
For parents who want to build dental care into their children’s lifelong habits, the American Dental Association’s consumer website, mouthhealthy.org, can be a useful tool. It isn’t a preachy site full of boring demands to brush, brush, brush. It has helpful, real-world advice that parents can put to good use. The section with suggestions on tooth fairy visits almost reminds me of a sort of Pinterest for teeth.
Someday, your child will be a senior, not just a high school senior, but much, much later, a senior as in “senior citizen.” Whether that future senior citizen is eating with his or her own teeth 75 years from now has a lot to do with what you are teaching your child right now.
You wouldn’t take any aspect of your child’s health for granted, but some parents overlook the fact that dental health is health. Sometimes, a special promotion like National Children’s Dental Health Month is a good reminder to make sure your children have a healthy dental routine.
Dr. Angela Canfield is licensed by the Georgia Board of Dentistry and the National Board of Dentist. She owns and practices at two dental offices: Premier Dental Designs (www.premierdentaldesigns.com/) located in Rincon, GA, and Sandfly Family Dental (https://www.sandflyfamilydental.com/) in Savannah, GA. Contact Dr. Canfield at firstname.lastname@example.org or 912-826-4037