February is National Children’s Dental Health Month, making it the perfect time to teach your child about dental hygiene.
According to the CDC, about 1 of 5 (20%) of children aged 5 to 11 years have at least one untreated, decayed tooth. Untreated decay may be painful and also could lead to much bigger problems.
We have a few tips for keeping your child’s smile healthy:
- Use Fluoride: Children who live in communities with fluoridated tap water and children who brush daily with fluoride toothpaste, have less tooth decay than those who do not. Children can start using fluoride toothpaste at age 2 (unless otherwise recommended by your dentist).
- Monitor Brushing: Make sure your child is brushing twice a day for a full two minutes. Check that they are not using too much toothpaste, and make sure they are not swallowing the toothpaste. Get some more toothbrushing tips.
- Get Dental Sealants: Dentists often will apply dental sealants to the chewing surfaces of the back teeth, which helps to prevent tooth decay. Studies show that this reduces decay in permanent molars by 81% for 2 years after they are placed on the tooth & continue to be effective for 4 years.
- Visit the Dentist: Make sure your child is going to the dentist at least once a year, and in most cases, they should be going every 6 months. It is recommended that a child first see a dentist by their first birthday. Regular visits will ensure that your child can get dental sealants when needed and will help to combat future problems with decay.
Having trouble making all this learning fun? Download some fun & educational activities for your kids.