Here are four tips to help keiki Malama their Mouth:
Make it Fun! To get kids brushing and flossing for the recommended two minutes, two times a day, use that smartphone at your fingertips. Choose a fun, two-minute tune and let kids rock out while they brush. Brush alongside them to model great technique.
Go to the Dentist! Dental problems can arise early, so the ADA recommends that children go to the dentist no later than their first birthday, and then at least twice a year. Make this fun too! It’s critical that kids get a good impression of the dentist when they’re young to encourage a lifetime of dental wellness. Watch cartoons and read children’s books about the dentist. Talk positively about the dentist to get kids excited. Take a teddy bear or favorite toy to appointments, and reward children afterward.
Eat Healthy! Limit sugar in foods and drinks (like fruit juices), and stick to water, high-protein snacks, leafy greens, and dairy products. Cheese can protect tooth enamel so enjoy this healthy treat.
Set A Good Example! Your kids look up to you, so if you drink soda all day long, skimp on flossing, and don’t visit the dentist yourself, your children will pick up on that message. Eat right, practice good oral hygiene, and if you smoke or use tobacco products, stop now – your kids are watching.
Remember that dental health is part of your overall health too, so as always, stay healthy in all areas of your life. Malama your mouth!