Dr Preece, Church & Associates

Baby to Teen: What to Teach Your Kids About Oral Health

Posted .

As you become older, your body changes. Don’t worry, this is not going to be that kind of discussion. We’re going to talk about changes in dental health. That is all.

If you haven’t had this discussion with your kids yet, you should. If they are still very young, that is good. You will be able to mold their developing minds and subliminally indoctrinate them into the cult of beneficial dental health.

First, while still a baby, you should be getting your child into an oral hygiene routine even before they sprout their first teeth. Teaching can take the form of a ritualistic routine of massaging tiny pink gums and wiping them down with a wet cloth after every meal. Sugar and milk residue need to be removed, and baby should never go to sleep with a bottle.

Once your little loved one becomes accustomed to the daily habit, and a few teeth begin to pop up, begin using a soft-bristled toothbrush. It need not have any toothpaste on it just yet, simply wet it down. Give it a couple months for more teeth to come in and then drop a dollop of fluoride toothpaste on there. Not much. Initially, maybe the size of a shelled sunflower seed, graduating to pea-sized down the road.

As they become older, these good oral hygiene habits become part of their daily lives—for their betterment. Continue to teach 2x daily brushing for 2 minutes each time, flossing once a day, and make regular appointments at the dentist for professional cleanings every 6 mos. Never again will your child be so eager to please you, so take advantage. Never again will your child believe you are so knowledgeable, so keep that quiet. Once the terrible teen years begin, with all the contrarianism, at least you will have secretly brainwashed them into not even thinking about ignoring their teeth.

If you’d like more education about early oral health care, call Dr. Preece, Church & Associates and our helpful team at Preece, Church & Associates. Phone: 817-741-6100, or come by our office in Fort Worth, Texas.