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5 Ways to Establish Good Dental Care Habits for Kids

dental care for kids dr. alana macalik arlington tx

Kids have a lot going on in their mouths. Teeth are coming and going, maybe not always in the right place. For parents, a major goal should be imparting to your kids the importance of their oral health, starting now and lasting forever. It’s not difficult to show them that their teeth and gums are a priority in their overall well-being. Your pediatric dentist is dedicated to helping you reinforce the messages and help your kids establish a lifetime of good dental care.

1. Visit the Dentist Every Six Months

Kids don’t keep track of schedules – grown-ups do. Prioritize your kids’ oral health visits just like your own and make appointments for your kids to see their Arlington dentist every six months. During this visit there will be a thorough teeth cleaning, dental exam, fluoride treatment and, usually once a year, digital x-rays. Hygienists teach brushing techniques and impart wisdom and trivia to keep kids interested in and dedicated to their oral health.

2. Brush and Floss Together

If your kids are all about you being hands-off when it comes to their oral health care, that’s fine. But you can still work side by side and do your calm, deliberate, reasonably paced dental care of your own teeth so they can emulate your moves. Let them watch you floss and then do it themselves. Let them see how you lift your upper lip to get the tops of your teeth and spend extra time on those hardworking molars. Good habits plus time with their favorite grown-up will blend for observant kids.

3. Get an Electric Toothbrush

To get your kids off on the right foot when it comes to the right amount of pressure to exert when brushing, invest in an electric toothbrush. This will prevent irritated gums and, over time, gum recession. An electric toothbrush is also just fun to use, especially if you get one that pairs with a fun app so kids can follow along and brush every part of their mouth as instructed for the right amount of time. They can see themselves brushing cavities away.

4. Set a Timer

Whether you use your smartphone, the clock on the wall, or a sand timer, aim for two minutes of solid brushing for your little ones both morning and night. Timers are great motivation for kids. It shows them there is an end and a beginning to this task they may dislike. It lets them get excited about completing a job. And it keeps that brush in their mouth working on their teeth for a reasonable amount of time. If a timer doesn’t work, find a two-minute song they love and play it through, brushing (and dancing?) with them all the while.

5. Limit Sugary Foods

This is a tough one – kids like sugar and chewy foods. They like candy anything sweet (at least most kids anyway). It’s up to you to provide them with healthy snack choices so they’ll reach for the cheese stick instead of the pretzel sticks, the fruit instead of the gummy worms, the oatmeal instead of the technicolor cereal. Every food choice affects teeth – by focusing on this and talking to your kids about it, you impact their oral health positively too.

See an Arlington Pediatric Dentist Near Me for Kids Dental Care

Get your child on the path to decades of excellent oral health. Start young, establish rules and routines, and they’ll have strong, healthy teeth for life. Schedule an appointment with Arlington, TX, dentist Dr. Alana Macalik and her team.