According to Mouthhealthy.org, back to school dental checkups are key to fighting the number one dental issue that causes kids to miss 51 million school hours each year – cavities. In addition to cavities, there are several educational components to healthy brushing that you may need to keep your kids updated on as they mature.
MouthHealthy.org shared some tips for back to school appointments and Dr. Chambliss added his feelings as well.
- Plan Ahead – this is a big one. Sometimes appointments can be booked a couple of weeks in advance and as you know, after school activities and homework can ramp up quickly, making it a challenge to get to the dentist. Book now, so you don’t have trouble attending your appointment later.
- Dental Habits Change as Kids Grow – Overseeing your child’s dental care at home can put them on the road to a cavity-free checkup. Here are some tips for how to work with your child at home to encourage healthy habits:
- Ages 6 and under – While your child is gaining independence, they still may need your oversight when it comes to brushing. There is a high possibility they are missing spots, especially near and around their molars. Also, flossing is still very important at this age to get any food that may be in between teeth. Kids this age will need help with flossing, so make sure you are around to help when they brush their teeth at night before they go to bed.
- Ages 7-12 – Your child has become pretty savvy about brushing and self-care by this age, but they simply may not be interested in keeping up with the routine. Keep encouraging the importance of dental health and self-care to your children at this age.
- Ages 12-18 – The data shows that the second most prevalent time for cavities to strike besides the toddler years, is the teenage years. Sometimes this happens because the child hasn’t had a cavity yet and was lax in earlier care or because they have trouble getting to different spots because of braces. Always make sure to reinforce the importance of brushing twice daily and taking care of teeth as part of their self-care. Do the best you can to minimize sweets and sugary drinks at school and home as well.
Medplex Pediatric Dentistry serves as a top rated pediatric dentist for Alabaster, Birmingham, Hoover, Helena, and Pelham, AL.