Indy Style

10 mistakes parents make with their kids’ dental health

Here to celebrate Children’s Dental Health Month, we have Dr. Carol McKown, pediatric dentist at Village Dental at Saxony. Dr. Carol has come up with the 10 biggest mistakes or “oopsies” she has seen parents make with their children’s teeth in her 35 years of experience treating infants, children, adolescents and children with special needs.  

1. Gummy Vitamins:

Giving your child gummy vitamins = OOPSIES!

2-3 grams of sugar in each one which is the same as a Starburst candy

Switch to a crunchy vitamin

2. Goldfish:

Thinking goldfish is a dental healthy choice = OOPSIES!

Pretzels, chips, animal crackers are all fermentable carbohydrates that break down to sugar!

Limit the frequency you are allowing your child to consume these snacks especially with Quarantining and children E-learning at home

3. Juice/Sport Drinks:

Giving your child juice or sports drinks all the time = OOPSIES!

30 grams of sugar or more in each bottle of sport drinks

Limit juice to only 4 oz or less per day and only consume during meal-times

Don’t fill their sippy cups with any expect WATER in between meals!

4. Bottle to Bed

Allowing your child to sleep with a bottle of milk = OOPSIES!

Milk including breast milk has lactose, a natural sugar, that if left on teeth for an extended period of time can lead to severe tooth decay.

Start weaning 12-18 months

Water only in bottle in their beds if they need a bottle to self soothe

5. Toothpaste Overload:

Putting a big swoopy swop of toothpaste on your child’s toothbrush = OOPSIES

A small grain of rice or smear of fluoridated toothpaste for children under 4

A small pea sized amount for children 4 and over

Some toothbrushes have a blue indicator on the bristles for the amount of toothpaste recommended

6. Tying Shoes:

Letting your toddler brush by themselves = OOPSIES

So many parents think that their 2-3 year olds can brush by themselves and do a thorough job…

Not really an age issue when they can brush by themselves, more a dexterity issue

We tell children “it can be done by YOU when you can tie your shoe”  When children have the dexterity to tie their own shoes, that is when they have the dexterity to brush properly and do a thorough job.

7. Flossing:

Not flossing your child’s teeth because they are just “baby teeth” = OOPSIES!

Start flossing when ANY two teeth are touching, a toothbrush cannot clean in between teeth

Especially when the back molars are touching

Majority of the cavities I see are from not flossing

8. Age 7 orthodontic visit

Many parents do not realize the importance of getting an orthodontic evaluation by age 7 = OOPSIES

Majority of children will not need treatment at age 7, but getting an orthodontics evaluation will identify any growth and development issues and will help you and your child plan for what will be needed in the future

Our office has an amazing orthodontics named Danielle Godley where all consultations are completely complimentary.

9. Mouthguards

Many parents think their children only need to wear a mouthguard for sports like Hockey, Football, and Rugby = OOPSIES!

Your child should wear a mouthguard for ALL contact sports including basketball, soccer, baseball, volleyball, lacrosse, wrestling, Taekwondo, gymnastics,

Mouthguards also reduce the potential of concussions

10. AGE 1 Dental Visits

So many parents think they should wait until age 3 for their child’s 1st dental visit… OOPSIES!

The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, The ADA, and the American Academy of Pediatrics ALL recommend your child sees the dentist by Age One!

The age one visit is THE most proactive step a parent can do to lower the potential of their child getting early childhood caries.

Bringing your child to the dentist at an early age will allow them to see that our office is a safe environment and will create a positive experience for future visits.  An age one visit is the best way to prevent tooth decay.  The goal for every pediatric dentist is to PREVENT decay before it begins! Research has shown that if a child has four preventive visits by the age of 3, early childhood caries is greatly reduced. At this first visit I will do a quick, but thorough exam that will detect any potential concerns and help educate you and your child on oral hygiene instructions and healthy eating habits. Dependent on your child’s need, the I may recommend a cleaning and/or fluoride. So just remember, Get it done by age one, it’s the most proactive step a parent can do prevent cavities for their child!

For more information visit, saxonydental.com.

THIS SEGMENT IS SPONSORED BY VILLAGE DENTAL AT SAXONY.

LIKE US ON FACEBOOK

MORE STORIES