February is National Children’s Dental Health Month! The ADA has chosen a very engaging theme this year, “Defeat Monster Mouth”, which features the McGrinn twins, Flossy and Buck, their best friends, Den and Gen and their buddy, K-9. Their mission is to defeat “Plaqster the Monster” with good dental health. That’s our mission too, at each dentist office in Raleigh, Durham, and Chapel Hill!Establish Habits Early
At Sunrise Dental, our goal is to educate the entire family on the importance of good dental health, from a very young age. Establishing good dental habits as children is critical for their continued dental health as your child grows into adulthood. The AAPD, (American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry) recommends that you take your child to his first dental appointment by the time he reaches one year. If you haven’t done that yet, no worries, you can schedule it now, with a dentist in Raleigh, Durham, or Chapel Hill.
When To Begin Brushing?
The overarching message of this year’s theme from the ADA, is that children must brush their teeth twice a day for two minutes to maintain good oral health. They are referring to it as “2min x2”, a catch phrase that they hope will become popular among children and help them to remember what to do. Even as toddlers, it is important that you begin helping them brush their teeth twice per day, for two minutes, using a soft-bristled toothbrush. Flossing at this age is also important and likely something they will need help with until they are six or seven years old.
Preparing To Brush
When choosing a toothbrush, choose one that is small enough to fit your child’s mouth and reaches all areas in the mouth easily. Be sure to replace his toothbrush every three or four months—and sooner if the brush is showing wear or is frayed. Use toothpaste recommended by the ADA, which contains fluoride and has been tested for safety.
How To Brush
Place the toothbrush in your child’s mouth at a 45-degree angle to his gums. Very gently, move the brush back and forth, in short tooth-wide strokes. Begin brushing the outer surfaces of the teeth first, then the inner surfaces of the teeth, and finally brush the chewing surface of the teeth.
When cleaning the inside of your child’s front teeth, tilt the brush vertically and make several up and down strokes, being sure to touch every area of the tooth. Brushing the tongue is also important because bacteria grows on the tongue and can cause dragon breath, too! You might find our blog on caring for your child’s teeth helpful.
Make it fun!
Sing the “Happy Birthday” song and make tooth time a happy time for your child. Instilling these habits in your children will benefit them long into adulthood—and they will thank you for it! You can also find some great dental activities to share with your children from the ADA—whether you’re a parent, a teacher, or childcare giver, these activities will stimulate conversation, teach your child about the importance of dental health, and provide them with some intelligent entertainment.If your child needs a checkup or perhaps you are looking for a dentist—Sunrise Dental is here to serve your children and your family. You can reach us at one of the following locations:
Raleigh Dentist: 919-878-0055
Durham Dentist: 919-493-3355
Chapel Hill Dentist: 919-929-3996
We look forward to serving you!