Did you know that February is National Children’s Dental Health Month? Well, now you do. It is a time to spread awareness of the prevalence of dental issues that children can face. Even if your child has tooth pain, it can be difficult for them to communicate, and these issues can interfere with their ability to function or perform at school. In fact children with oral pain are four times as likely to have lower GPAs than those without. This month, take the opportunity to learn about these issues and recommit to improving your own child’s oral health. Check out this helpful information from your dentist in Murphy.
What are common children’s oral health issues?
Believe it or not, the most common health issue affecting children in the U.S. is cavities. In addition, children can experience any of the following dental problems:
- Persistent toothache.
- Dental abscesses or infections.
- Inability to chew food well, which results in decreased appetite.
How can I avoid these common oral health issues for my child?
The best way to deal with common oral health issues for children is to prevent them altogether. But how do you do that? You can help protect your child’s teeth if you make sure they do the following:
- Brush at least twice daily.
- Floss at least once daily.
- Use a fluoride mouthwash once a day.
- Drink fluoridated water, usually from the tap.
- Visit the dentist twice a year for checkups and cleanings for children over a year old.
- Replace their toothbrush every 3 months.
- Eat sweets after a meal, not as a snack between meals.
- Get dental sealants as soon as their permanent teeth come in.
Why does my child need to see a dentist every six months?
Taking your child to the dentist every six months is crucial to preventing serious dental health problems. Even with diligent brushing and flossing every day, plaque can build up over time and harden into tartar. When this happens, it becomes much harder to remove and it allows cavity-causing bacteria to have better access to your child’s teeth. The dentist or hygienist uses professional tools and skills to remove this buildup and essentially wipes the slate clean for your child’s mouth. By consistently coming every six months, you can help prevent cavities or other oral issues from developing in the first place. Or, if there is an oral health problem, your dentist will be able to treat it and stop the issue from progressing any further.
Why do I need to make sure my child practices good oral habits at an early age?
It’s never too early to teach your child about healthy dental habits. You can massage your infant’s gums with a washcloth to remove any bacteria. Once you see teeth coming in, brush their teeth daily. You should start bringing them in to the dentist just after their first birthday. If you are consistent in doing these actions with them throughout their childhood, they will learn that their oral health is important, and they will be more likely to continue doing these actions into adulthood.
Now is the time to make your child’s health a priority. As you help them implement these tips into their life, you’ll notice a difference in your child’s oral health and maybe even in their demeanor and their performance in school. For more information about dental health or tips for getting children to practice good oral hygiene, you can contact your dentist in Murphy.
About the Author
At Woodcreek Family Dental, there are two dedicated dentists who serve patients in Murphy. As a former hygienist, Dr. Christine Foley is highly regarded as a periodontist, and she has experience in pediatric dentistry. Dr. Oliver Villaruel, called Dr. V, has been practicing for over 14 years and specializes in restorative dentistry but is also certified in Invisalign and ClearCorrect. You can contact them by calling (469) 278-7988 or clicking here.