National Parent's Day – Mentor Your Kids

Posted on July 25, 2013 in Children’s Oral Health

July 28 is National Parent's Day so what better a time to chat about how you can help set your little ones on the right path to pearly whites, because good dental habits can be fun if taught right!

Common mistakes for little ones are overusing toothpaste and brushing too hard. Luckily, preventive dental care is pretty simple. When it comes to good oral hygiene, the same rules that apply to you, also apply to your children.

The rules:

Brush twice a day

Floss daily

Visit the dentist twice a year

Seriously, that's it. Those are the basics that can have you and your kiddos on the right path. But, there are other things you can do to help mentor little ones.

Supervise and help children under the age of six who may lack the coordination to effectively accomplish these tasks on their own.

A small, pea-size amount of toothpaste is best. Too much toothpaste is unnecessary, and can create lots of foam, which makes brushing difficult.

When done, children should spit out toothpaste – swallowing it can lead to fluorosis, a cosmetic condition in which spots may appear on the teeth.

But the true key is to get children excited to brush their teeth instead of treating it like a chore.

Develop a fun ritual around brushing.

Sing a song about brushing teeth or 'brush' the teeth of your child's stuffed animals.

Place a step stool near the sink counter that allows your child to see the basin.

Have fun choosing a cool toothbrush. Let your child pick from the great choice of colors, characters and gizmos available today.

By playing a positive, active role, you can urge your children to learn good habits for a lifetime of oral health. Do you have other ideas for making brushing fun? We'd love to hear them.