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How to teach children oral hygiene

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Recent studies have shown that more and more children and young adults seem to be suffering from some kind of dental issue. Be it a rotten tooth or a case of misaligned smile, there is something wrong with the periodontal. And as the saying goes cure lies in prevention. What with the lifestyles these days and eating habits, it becomes more and more difficult to ensure that kids have a good oral hygiene and dental system.

So what you as an adult can do to help them out? Teach them the importance of dental cleanliness, how it can be achieved and what are the long term benefits of it! Instead of instilling in them the fear that you have of the dentist and his/her office, train you little one to be vigilant with their dental care so they don’t end up needing any kind of dental treatment in the first place.

Remember once your children develop bad habits, it would become next to impossible for them to change them when they are grown up. So now is the time to teach them about how essential it is to chew well before swallowing, brushing teeth twice a day and visiting a dentist regularly. When they have healthy looking teeth and gum they will not only fare well in terms of physical wellness but also emotional and psychological goodness too. They will have better self-esteem and would not have any kind of social anxieties. Here are some easy ways to ingrain perfect oral hygiene and habits in your little ones.

Practice what You Preach

The very first thing that you need to understand is that kids learn through your behavior and actions, not merely words. And this is the reason why you as parents or guardians would have to become the example that does everything first so that they start copying you. If your intake of junk foods is high your children will follow. Likewise, if you don’t brush, floss and visit the dentist, don’t expect them to understand the importance of doing do!

1.      Adopting a Healthy Lifestyle by Incorporating Outdoor Times

Yes it’s fun to watch a family movies with a bowl of popcorn and soda, but staying indoor all the time is not food for health and leads to diseases like cancer and stroke. Did you know that children need at least 60 minutes of exercise a day to stay healthy, while adults need 30 minutes? Hence, the best way to incorporate some outdoorsy time is by going out on picnics. Have a fulfilled day planned that involves some kind of game or physical activity where the whole family gets to spend the day in the sun and grass/water. This way oral health will also improve.

2.      Healthy Snacks over Junk Foods

This switch is a must and the sooner you do it, the better for the whole family. When out with the family, you need sustenance of course. So instead of taking edibles like chips, cookies, sweets, canned juices or fizzy drinks, instead take healthy lunches like homemade sandwiches, fresh fruit juices, granola bars and mixed nuts. Fresh fruits and veggies can also be refreshing.

3.      Green Tea Instead of Coffee

There is no right time then right now. Coffee is full of caffeine and the sooner you kick the habit, the less likely your child will pick it up. Risk of tooth decay increases by multiples with the use of caffeinated drinks. Instead start using green tea, as there are quite a few advantages of that. There is caffeine in that too, but in very minute quantities. This would not decay your teeth and also help your metabolism.

4.      Oral Care Always

Whether you are home or away on vacations, oral health must remain a top priority for you and for your kids. Ensure that you and your family brushes and flosses twice a day everyday no matter how relaxed the schedule may be.

5.      Regular Dentist Visits

This is another must. It will help your kids maintain a healthy habit for life. Teach them from the very start how important it is to visit the dentist regularly and how the dentist’s office is a safe and friendly place, nothing to be afraid of. Chose a dentist who is happy and open to communication.

May 10, 2017

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