Kids are groaning and parents are rejoicing, which must mean it’s time to head back to school! While you’re busy getting back into the routine of packing lunches and getting kids on the bus on time, make sure you schedule a visit to see Capital Cosmetic Dentistry of Chevy Chase, MD. Now is a great time to get your kids’ teeth checked for cavities to set them up for a cavity-free school year.
Cavity Prevention in Children
It’s important to make sure kids learn how to take care of their teeth from a young age. Not only is oral health intricately linked to overall health, but as kids lose baby teeth and grow adult teeth, those adult teeth have to last their entire lives!
Did you know that over half of American children under the age of 10 already have at least one cavity? You can help your child avoid becoming part of this statistic by teaching them a simple rule called the 2 X 2 rule: brush twice a day for two minutes. Parents can also keep teeth healthy by discouraging sugary snacks and drinks.
Of course, getting kids to follow the 2 X 2 rule is easier said than done! While it’s easy to remember, that doesn’t mean kids will want to do it every day. Try setting a good example by brushing alongside them, investing in a timer, or building it into their daily routines.
Nowadays, parents also have several toothpastes to choose from that are great for kids, and small bathroom timers are usually available nearby. While two minutes might not seem like a long time — or even if it feels like an eternity to your child — it goes a long way in strengthening enamel and keeping teeth healthy for the long haul.
You can also help your child proactively fight against tooth decay by limiting sugar intake. In addition to the overall health risks associated with too much sugar, it can really do a number on teeth. Too much sugar feeds oral bacteria, which builds up on teeth and erodes enamel. Once the enamel is eroded, a hole is formed in the tooth, and you’ve got yourself a cavity. Limiting sugar intake is the first line of defense against cavities.
Tooth decay is especially prevalent among school-age children, and tooth-related illnesses account for 52 million school hours lost each year! To keep cavities at bay and promote good oral health, make sure you include a dental check-up on your back-to-school to-do list!