Parental Guide: Dental Tips for Kids During the Summer
School is out for the summer and that means a change in daily routines for many families.
While summer break is a time for relaxation, it’s not a time to become lax about oral health.
Good oral hygiene starts young and produces lifelong benefits to your child’s overall health.
Here are four summer dental tips for parents.
#1 – Be a Stickler about Brushing
Your kids might enjoy sleeping in many mornings and staying up later than they do on typical school nights, but don’t let the change in waking and bedtime routines prevent them from brushing twice a day and flossing once a day.
#2 – Remember to Brush for Two Minutes
Children, as well as adults, often do not brush their teeth long enough. Two minutes is longer than you think! Try setting a timer so your children know when to stop brushing.
Some children’s toothbrushes on the market play music or light up for two minutes to encourage brushing. Teens might enjoy the free app, Brush DJ, which plays music from a phone for a set amount of time to keep teens brushing longer.
#3 – Prevent Over Snacking
Deter your children from raiding the pantry all day when school is out. Set designated snack times for younger children during the day.
Indulging in ice cream or a popsicle is fine in moderation, but try to buy healthier snack choices for your home and limit high sugar snacks.
#4 – Encourage Water Drinking
Water is not only better for your teeth, but it will also keep you hydrated on hot summer days. Remember tap water contains fluoride, which helps strengthen tooth enamel and prevents tooth decay.
Limit sugary drinks such as juices, sports drinks, sodas and other carbonated beverages. Sugary drinks can combine with bacteria in your child’s mouth and lead to tooth decay.
#5 – Practice flossing
If flossing is not part of your child’s daily routine, it’s not too late to start. Use the summer when you’re not rushed with homework and after school activities to turn flossing into a daily habit.
Flossers specifically designed for children may be easier for small hands to control and use than traditional dental floss.
#6 – Make an Appointment for a Dental Cleaning
Sometimes life gets busy and bi-annual visits to the dentist get postponed. If your child or children are due for a dental cleaning, call Dr. Marra at Huntersville Family & Cosmetic Dentistry.
Summer is the perfect time to make an appointment, so valuable school time is not missed for appointments.