How your child takes care of their teeth throughout their childhood and into adulthood depends on you. If you teach your child to take good care of their teeth early enough, they will take that knowledge throughout their entire lives and understand the importance of healthy teeth and gums. Read on for tips to teach your child about good oral health and what you can do as a parent.
Take Your Child To The Dentist
Don't wait until your child has a mouth full of adult teeth to take them to the dentist. You should take your child to the dentist early; start taking your child to the dentist around a year old. Your child's teeth are already below the gum line and require cleaning even before they emerge, which is done by cleaning the gums. Get your child to the dentist to be sure the gums and any teeth that have emerged are clean and in good shape. Baby teeth can get cavities too, which can affect the adult teeth below. Take your child to the dentist every six months for a cleaning and exam.
Brush Alongside Your Child
Brushing with your child can help get your child into brushing. Brush your teeth together in the morning and at night if possible. This will make it feel like less of a chore if you are doing it together and can show your child how to brush properly. You can make it into a game or make it more fun by allowing your child to brush your teeth or seeing who can brush the longest.
Read Books About Brushing
Read books to your child about brushing or about going to the dentist. Children can relate well to the characters in the stories, and this gives them an understanding of the importance of good oral health using a character rather than an adult just telling them. Take your child to the bookstore or library to pick out books about going to the dentist and read them to your child.
Let Your Child Pick Their Toothbrush/Toothpaste
Have your child pick out their own toothbrush and toothpaste from the store. There are a variety of types of toothbrushes that your child will enjoy using, including toothbrushes that light up or toothbrushes with characters on them. Let your child choose what they want to use to keep them excited about brushing.
Teach your child about the importance of taking care of their teeth to ensure they have good oral health as a child, into their teenage years, and then into adulthood. For more tips, speak with your dentist.