You know February as the month of Valentine’s Day and red hearts, but did you know it’s also a moment to celebrate your favorite little smile? That’s right — February is the time of year that your dentist celebrates Children’s Dental Health Month! This is when we like to shine the spotlight on children’s oral health, including the importance of at-home care, routine dental visits, and how this all adds up to a healthy smile and solid overall health for your child.
ORAL HYGIENE FOR KIDS
Just like what is recommended for your own smile, your child should brush his or her teeth after each meal, or at least twice a day. They will probably be ready to brush on their own by the time they are able to tie their own shoes, but you should continue to supervise their habits to ensure a proper clean is achieved. Flossing should begin as soon as two teeth are touching each other. Talk to your child about how important these habits are — it may help to read children’s books about why brushing and flossing are important
If, like most parents, you meet resistance when it comes to brushing and flossing regularly, you may have to develop some special tactics to encourage proper habits. Some of our favorite methods for encouraging proper oral hygiene in children include:
- Making it a family affair by getting everyone to brush and floss together at night and/or in the morning, if possible
- Starting a progress chart with small incentive rewards for good behavior
- Letting your child choose a toothbrush and paste in their favorite color or with their favorite characters
Have a tactic that works for you that’s not mentioned here? We would love to hear it during your little one’s next checkup and cleaning!
ROUTINE VISITS TO THE DENTIST IN NEW ORLEANS
In addition to proper oral hygiene at home, bring your little one in for a checkup and cleaning every six months. During this visit, we will examine their teeth and gums and make sure their smile is developing on track. Kids and parents alike appreciate our warm, friendly approach!
HEALTHY SMILES = HEALTHY BODIES
When you make a point to develop positive oral hygiene habits for your child, you are doing more than ensuring that their teeth and gums stay healthy into adolescence and adulthood — and of course that is worth enough on its own. In addition to putting your little one on the path to a lifetime of positive oral health, you are also supporting their overall wellbeing. Children who brush, floss, and visit their New Orleans dentist regularly are less likely to experience tooth decay that can lead to discomfort, low self-esteem, and even difficulty speaking or eating properly. Helping your child enjoy great oral health now helps to ensure that they grow up to be happy and healthy, too.
Meet the Practice
Dr. Todd Canatella and Dr. Rachel Neumeyer welcome the whole family into their general dentistry practice. To learn more about their services or to celebrate National Children’s Dental Health Month with your family dentist in New Orleans, we invite you to contact the office at 504-717-4259.