The American Dental Association has named February as “National Children’s Dental Health Month.” During this time, it is a great idea to begin your kids on the road to positive oral health. Here are five smart tips to get your child flossing each day.
1. Teach Children About the Positives of Flossing
Young children learn quickly, so it is important to teach them the importance of taking good care of their teeth. Explaining how flossing will uphold positive oral health is key. It is best to tell children flossing removes food particles that get trapped between teeth so that cavities do not form. When teeth are healthy, painful decay will not be a problem, and a smile will remain beautiful. When children comprehend the benefits of flossing, they will continue the practice into adulthood.
2. Establish a Solid Oral Health Routine
Since children like feeling secure, they embrace routines. This is a good reason parents must establish solid oral health routines that includes flossing. When children get in the habit of brushing and flossing each day, it becomes second nature and no longer feels like a chore. Dental experts recommend flossing children’s teeth from age two.
3. Set a Good Example
Children learn by example. When parents brush and floss regularly, children will follow. Kids emulate their parents. Watching parents take care of their teeth makes children want to maintain healthy mouths as well.
4. Reward Good Flossing
When a child continues to floss consistently and with the correct technique, it is nice to offer a reward. Positive reinforcement does not have to include food. Since providing sweets can discourage good dental habits, it is better to reward your child with a movie or other special time together.
5. Visit Your Dentist Regularly
Each child should have a dental professional who guides his or her along the path to positive oral health. Experts recommend scheduling a child’s first dental appointment at age one. Taking your child to the dentist at a young age removes the fright from the experience and allows him or her to establish a trusting relationship with the professional.
Dr. Dana Walters, DDS understands flossing is one of the keys to a healthy mouth. He is willing to teach parents how to help children floss correctly and begin a solid oral health routine.