Back-To-School Family Dental Tips
It seems like just yesterday you picked up the kids from school. Maybe they went to summer camp, maybe they stayed home and played in the front yard. Maybe you went on a vacation or visited relatives. Regardless of what you did this summer, it’s time to go shopping for pencils and clothes and make sure that your kids did their summer reading because school is right around the corner. Just like you need to make sure that your children have their check-ups and homework finished, you should also make sure that they’ve received a dental check-up. Here are a few tips to make sure that your children have beautiful smiles when they head back into school for their first day.
Brushing and Flossing
As we’ve pointed out before, just because the Department of Health and Human Services removed flossing from its recommendations doesn’t mean it’s no longer an important part of any dental routine. It just means that you and your children have to floss correctly. In addition to flossing, you should always make sure that your children brush their teeth twice a day. Making this a routine will make sure that your children have healthy dental habits as they grow older.
Just having them brush their teeth is only half the battle. You also have to remember to switch their toothbrushes out at an appropriate time. After a while, brushing with an old toothbrush can be almost counter-productive. We recommend that you replace their toothbrushes whenever you get a report card from your children, or about 4-6 times a year. We also recommend you replace their toothbrush if they get sick. If your children are at the age that they resist brushing their teeth, you can make it more entertaining by letting them pick toothbrush colors or having a sticker calendar.
Even if your children brush their teeth twice a day and floss like they’re supposed to, it can all be brought down by sugary foods. So if you pack your child’s lunch, make sure to remove sugary snacks like applesauce, gummies, and chocolate milk. The added sugar can contribute to tooth decay and painful cavities. You should also avoid the starchy snacks like pretzels and chips, as they break down into a sticky goo that contributes just as much to tooth decay as the sugary snacks. The best choices for snacks are generally colorful fruits and vegetables. In the end, though, we know that children don’t always eat the snacks that you want them to, especially if they eat at the cafeteria.
If they do eat in the cafeteria, make sure to explain healthy dental choices to them. This has the added benefit of usually also explaining healthy eating choices. Now, it is obviously no disaster if your children have the occasional soda or cookie, but if they’re eating nothing but cookies and drinking nothing but soda their teeth will not be very happy. Instead of these foods, encourage them to eat vegetables, fruits, or cheese.
The best thing you can do for your children’s dental health, however? Make sure that they make it to the dentist before the school year starts. A dental check-up before the school year begins should be seen as just as necessary as a doctor’s appointment. A check-up like this can make sure that your children aren’t suffering from tooth decay and can avert cavities.
Another great piece of advice is to plan for these appointments. We at Sninski & Schmitt Family Dentistry are often incredibly busy in the immediate pre-school weeks, as everyone is rushing to get their family dental appointments done. Therefore, it is key to get your appointment scheduled as early as possible. These appointments will guarantee your child the best dental care possible and allow your family dentist to catch any decay before it becomes a threat.
Family Dentistry for the Back-to-School Season
At Sninski & Schmitt, we understand how much pressure you’re under as a parent during the back-to-school season. As such, we endeavor to provide the absolute best Family Dentistry in Holly Springs and Cary. As parents ourselves, we understand only too well the rush of buying new supplies, making sure the kids have finished their summer reading, making sure all the paperwork is in order, and then that final fateful day when they get on the bus or get out of the car and start another year of school. If you haven’t yet had the opportunity to schedule an appointment for your child, contact us in either our Holly Springs or Cary offices, and we will do our best to fit your Family Dentistry needs in before your child heads off to school!