But what is national children’s dental health month?
In February, the dental world celebrates Children’s Dental Health Month. Established by the ADA, National Children’s Dental Health Month is a month-long national health observance that brings together thousands of dedicated professionals, healthcare providers, and educators to promote the benefits of good oral health to children, their caregivers, teachers, and many others. Every day is dental health day here at RPDO, but in February we make an effort to place an even stronger emphasis to both our patients and the greater Richmond community about the importance of children’s dental health.
Why does national children’s dental health month matter?
Did you know that early childhood tooth decay has become the most common chronic childhood disease, impacting more children than asthma? More than 40% of children have tooth decay by the time they reach Kindergarten, according to the ADA. While we’ve written about cavities during the early childhood development stages before, it is important to reiterate that having healthy teeth can lead to improved speech, dental disease prevention, and help with healthy adult teeth.
As pediatric dentists, we are dedicated to advocating for children’s dental health. Maintaining a healthy smile, preventing children from missing valuable time in school because of dental appointments, and educating even our youngest patients (and their parents!) about the importance of a healthy dental care routine is exactly why we do what we do.
The earlier your child’s dental care and health is discussed and a consistent routine is established, the more likely we can work together to:
● Prevent tooth decay, both in baby and adult teeth
● Prevent the development of crowded teeth
● Ensure healthy gums and teeth in adulthood
● Prevent any dental injuries by recommending the appropriate mouth guard
Children’s dental care tips for a healthy smile:
Whether your child is getting their first tooth or they are trying to find a new cleaning routine with their braces, it is important to prioritize your child’s dental health. We’ve compiled several easy tips for you!
● Brushing teeth twice a day for at least two minutes. Consistently brushing can ensure your child has healthy gums, prevents plaque buildup and potential cavities.
● Flossing is just as important as brushing. This prevents bacteria from spreading around your child’s mouth and to future adult teeth.
● Scheduling routine dental appointments can prevent larger dental health issues down the road.
● Hydration is key! Encouraging your child to drink more water and less sugary beverages can protect your child’s enamel and prevent cavities.
● Replace toothbrush every 3 – 4 months. It is important that the bristles on your child’s toothbrush are able to scrub all plaque and debris from their teeth and gums.
Still have questions about incorporating a healthy routine for your child’s dental health? Contact us today to schedule an appointment!