When you help your child develop healthy oral hygiene habits, you give them tools that they can use well into adulthood. Our Lincoln Park dentists have some tips on how you can get your children started off on the right foot in terms of dental health.
The first thing to discuss with your child is that bacterial plaque is simply a byproduct of going through our daily routines. So, plaque—which can cause cavities and gum disease—develops every day. That is why we need to be diligent with our oral hygiene routines and not skip days!
It’s also important to talk to your child about how brushing AND flossing are both vital parts of a healthy oral hygiene routine. Brushing and flossing both serve key, and slightly different roles in removing plaque and tartar, so we need to do both.
Talk to your child about proper technique when cleaning your smile. For example, we should be moving our toothbrush in small circular motions over dental enamel, in order to buff away bacteria. We should apply gentle pressure when brushing, so that we do not inadvertently cause damage to our teeth or oral tissues. Another tip is to take your time when flossing your smile; make sure the clean between all of your teeth, and move your floss vertically and from side to side in order to disrupt as much plaque as possible.
Finally, you want to emphasize to your child that any good at-home oral hygiene routine must be complemented with professional dental care. Our dental team uses professional tools and techniques in order to clear away more plaque and tartar than you can remove at home. So, both adult and pediatric patients should complete professional dental cleanings every six months or so. Your child will, hopefully, see their dentist as their partner and friend in dental care—this will help them avoid suffering from dental anxiety in the future.
Call our Lincoln Park pediatric dentists if you want to learn more, or if you are ready to schedule a consultation for you or your child. We’re here to help!