As a kid dentist in San Antonio, we see a lot of cavities. Even children with super-involved parents can easily struggle with tooth decay. This is such a common ailment that the CDC said it impacts more children than any other health condition. If this weren’t alarming enough, the more cavities that your child gets, the more likely they are to miss time in school and be unable to do other things that they love. We don’t want your child to suffer or need to schedule an emergency toothache treatment. In fact, we would prefer to focus on preventative care so that they can remain in excellent oral health all throughout their lifetime. With that in mind, here are some cavity busting tips you can try at home.
- Buy a new toothbrush. When was the last time you replaced their toothbrush? We suggest that you replace it every three months and maybe even sooner. Kids are rough on their toothbrush just like they are rough on everything. This means that they are likely to chew on it and abuse it on a nearly daily basis. This can lead to frayed bristles that are incapable of doing their job. If you see that their toothbrush is looking worn, buy a new one. This will ensure that their efforts are more effective, in general.
- Use fluoride. As a kid dentist, we highly recommend fluoride. This is a naturally occurring substance that can strengthen their teeth through the process of remineralization. Fluoride can be obtained through an in-office treatment or by brushing with a fluoride toothpaste. We recommend that you do both so that your child can have strong and healthy teeth without the risk of a cavity.
- Rinse their mouth. We get it – brushing after every meal is hard, even for adults. Considering how frequently children snack, this becomes even more difficult. If you have lost the battle to brush teeth more than twice a day, have them rinse their mouth instead. This is a simple solution for keeping food particles and bacteria off of their teeth. While not as good as brushing, this is an alternative that will reduce their risk of developing cavities.
- Snack better. Eating snacks is part of being a kid. As a parent, however, you can influence the type of snacks that they eat. Instead of giving them chips or cookies, buy snack size carrots, string cheese, and almonds. These foods are healthy and will help to remineralize their teeth naturally. Therefore, they are unlikely to produce cavities like their sugary counterparts.
- Drink more water. Once your kids have brushed their teeth for bed, don’t give them juice or soda. Make water the mandatory nighttime beverage. Children as young as toddlers get cavities due to drinking sugary beverages at night, so this simple step can make a big difference.
As a kid dentist in San Antonio, we want your child to remain in good oral health as they age. The last thing we want is for your child to have an unnecessary toothache. With that in mind, we encourage you to take steps to keep their teeth healthy and schedule a teeth cleaning twice a year so that we can help you along.