Promoting Good Dental Habits in Your Kids

Cute Curly Haired GirlAs a parent, you work hard to protect your kids and to ensure their healthy growth. Dental health is an important part of your children’s overall development and well-being. However, encouraging the right dental habits can be challenging.  In this post, Dr. Gregory Wright, your general dentist in Southlake, TX, explains how you can help your children learn good dental habits and how you can make dental hygiene fun for your kids.

Good Habits Start at Home

You may be surprised to learn that you should begin brushing your children’s teeth while they are still in infancy; in fact, before your little one has even developed his first tooth, you should wipe off your baby’s gums with a soft cloth or rag several times a day. Once your child’s baby teeth start to appear, you should begin a daily brushing routine. Starting a regular habit early in your child’s life not only protects their teeth from decay and damage, it gets them started on a lifetime of good dental hygiene. Remember, children learn by example; make sure that you are brushing and flossing regularly, as well.

Make Dental Hygiene Fun

There are many ways that you can make this routine an enjoyable part of your child’s day. Try buying a fun toothbrush in her favorite color. There are also lots of toothbrushes that feature favorite cartoon characters or movie heroes. Let your child pick out her own new toothbrush every three months. You can also use special kids’ toothpaste in her favorite flavor such as cherry or bubblegum.

Take the Fear Out of Going to the Dentist

Once your child develops her first baby tooth, you should begin taking her to the dentist for regular biannual cleanings and checkups. Again, this routine protects her oral health and teaches her healthy habits for the rest of her life. A visit to the dentist can be scary for your child, but there are several ways you can ease her anxieties. First, tell her what she can expect, but avoid mentioning any discomfort – after all, most children don’t experience any pain at all.  You might even play “pretend dentist,” letting your child be the patient while you act out the part of the dentist. Look for fun picture books about dentists and dental health, which will help your child understand her upcoming visit. Most importantly, stay positive! If you suffer from dental anxiety, it is very easy for your child to pick up on your fear. Instead, focus on the benefits of a visit to the dentist, especially white, healthy teeth and a beautiful smile.

About Gregory Wright, DDS:

As a native Texan, Dr. Gregory Wright opened his private practice in Southlake, TX in 1992. He is happily accepting new patients from Southlake, Grapevine, Keller, Trophy Club, Colleyville, and all surrounding communities. To schedule an appointment with your cosmetic dentist, call our office today at (817) 481-7999.