It's back-to-school season—a busy time for parents and children, alike! But this year, don't let your child's oral healthcare take a back seat during the hustle and bustle of back-to-school preparations. Although dental hygiene might not seem like a top priority during this hectic time of the year, preemptive dental care is one of the most important things you can do for your child's overall health and wellbeing. So, take a little time and consider adding these tips from Dr. Bowen and Dr. Gehlert to your back-to-school to-do list!
- Schedule your child's checkup. According to the American Dental Association, regular dental examinations are just as important as immunizations and booster shots for your child's wellbeing. Cavities are the most common chronic disease among children in the United States, and approximately 20% of children suffer from untreated tooth decay. When left untreated, dental pain or disease can lead to difficulty speaking, eating, playing, and learning—as well as missed school. During a checkup, your dental experts will not only clean teeth, but also check for serious problems, like airway issues that could be causing poor behavior, impairing learning, or leading to issues like bedwetting. By diagnosing and treating health concerns before school starts, you can set your child up for success!
- Add "new toothbrush" to your school supplies shopping list. It's easy to forget, but you should be changing out your toothbrush or toothbrush head every three months. After the wear and tear of normal use, toothbrushes become less effective at removing plaque from your teeth. Using bent, frayed, or damaged bristles won't help your child's smile stay as healthy as it can be. Additionally, you should keep extra toothbrushes on hand in case of any illnesses. If your child comes down with a cold, the flu, or strep throat, you should switch out their toothbrush to prevent the risk of reinfection or the growth of bacteria on their brush.
- Pack a healthy lunchbox. The foods we eat have a huge impact on our oral health! Make sure you're packing a lunch for your child that's healthy for their body and for their mouth. Crunchy, raw fruits and veggies (like carrot sticks and apples) are great for your teeth. Keep sugary drinks to a minimum—regular, non-sparkling water is the best drink for a healthy smile.
Have a great back-to-school season! We hope to see your children's smiling faces here at Bowen Legacy Dental. Give our office a call to schedule an appointment today.
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