Are Your Children Excited To See The Dentist?!
Last month Dr. Faulconer had the opportunity to visit a local elementary school to get our youngsters excited about their smiles. Hands were raised, milk and M&M's were discussed and (hopefully!) teeth were brushed!
To continue the celebration and education about good dental care and pediatric dentistry, the doctors at Crossroads Family Dentistry have a few tips and tricks for you and your family!
Why Do We Brush Our Teeth?
Those sweet little baby teeth will fall out eventually, but until then, they need gentle but diligent care. Children are still getting the hang of hand-eye coordination, so it’s easy for them to miss some spots while brushing! Here’s how to ensure that those pearly whites stay clean:
- Make sure each surface is brushed: the top, inside and outside!
- Brush lightly! We always tell kids to hold the toothbrush just like a pencil.
- Brush at an angle: 45 degrees, (slightly slanted) also connects with the gums, who need attention as well.
Strong Healthy Teeth Need Strong Healthy Food!
There are power foods that help keep those pearly whites bright and strong--perfect for chewing and breaking down foods to get all of the nutrients inside!
- The rough texture of vegetables, especially raw vegetables, acts as a ‘scrubber’, naturally sloughing off the buildup of plaque on enamel. Plus, some vegetables help teeth to form enamel, such as broccoli and carrots.
- Fruits are also nature’s ‘scrubbers’! Those high in vitamin C, such as strawberries, help to protect gums from developing disease. Another bonus: they massage the gums, too!
- Chicken, beef, and eggs are all healthy proteins that help prevent decay.
- Water is the only drink that does not have anything that could cause decay. In addition, drinking water, especially after meals, helps to rinse food particles, debris, and bacteria from teeth.
‘Bad Guy’ Foods
We asked kiddos about what foods they thought might be bad for teeth. And they were right: sugary foods and drinks like candy and soda act as ‘bad guys’ to our enamel. When plaque produced by “sugar bugs” or bacteria builds up on our teeth, it can lead to cavities and decay.
A Healthy Mouth And A Healthy Attitude
When we make dental care fun--everything from making brushing teeth a fun part of the home routine to making dentist visits a positive experience--we create lifelong health!
We talked about how visiting the dentist is a happy experience: how we ask our patients to open their mouths so that we can gently look inside and make sure they can bite correctly at that gums, tissue, and bones are in tip-top shape.
We discussed the importance of regular dental visits. Six month checkups allow dentists to remove plaque build up, check for any changes in health, and spot cavities that aren’t always visible to Mom and Dad!
The other positive benefits of starting dental care early include:
- The ability to address and correct any small issues, such as cavities, before they develop into bigger, more expensive dental issues
- The ability to predict potential changes in dental health
- Foster a thriving home hygiene routine that includes care and nutrition
Happy Brushers Are Healthy People!
We love encouraging children to be as interested and devoted to their oral health as we are. If you are in Oklahoma City and are interested in bringing your child in for their first pediatric dental visit, please feel free to come on by or give us a call. We will welcome you with open arms!
Gum Disease: The Mouth and Body Connection
Did you know your family dentist can detect and diagnose systemic diseases in the body?
It’s true: Dentists are our allies in keeping a smile on our face, and our bodies in good shape!
Get In Touch With Whole Body Health
When flu seasons comes around, do you sometimes feel too tired to brush or floss before bed? Think again. Research in recent years has demonstrated a definitive link between oral health and overall health. Because your mouth is a gateway to your body, keeping your mouth healthy helps keep your body healthy, too!
Get The Facts:
Gum Disease And Systemic Health
According to the Academy of General Dentistry, more than 90 percent of system diseases (such as respiratory disease, heart disease, strokes, diabetes, low birth weight, and rheumatoid arthritis) display oral symptoms.
Before you skip a trip to the dentist, ask yourself: could you be missing something? Your family dentist can spot unusual developments on your gums, tongue, and teeth to develop a treatment plan that can benefit your smile and support good health.
The Inflammation Connection
Your teeth and gums are excellent gauges of your well-being. Gum disease and cavities, for instance, can indicate cardiovascular and respiratory disease, as well as diabetes. Loose teeth could signal the start of osteoporosis.
Researchers have discovered that the buildup of bacteria on teeth makes our gums prone to infection and inflamed gums. At this stage, you’ll notice swollen and tender gums, also known as gingivitis. But if the infection is treated, the inflammation will cease as well.
If left untreated, inflammation from gum disease breaks down the connection between your teeth and gums, and eats away at the bones that keep your teeth in place. This form of severe gum disease is known as periodontitis, and it can introduce issues throughout the rest of your body if it enters your bloodstream through the infected bone.
Why Your Dentist Is Essential To Your Overall Health
Regular brushing and flossing is essential to your everyday oral health, but your local family dentist is a crucial element in removing the plaque and bacteria that your toothbrush isn’t a match for. Every single one of us needs the professional touch of a dentist to expertly remove what our home routines cannot! Keeping your mouth clean of excess bacteria is the key to disease prevention.
What You Can Do At Home
Keep your mouth happy and healthy and the rest of your body will respond! Brushing and flossing to keep food particles and debris from decaying in your teeth is essential, as well as drinking plenty of water throughout the day to flush the mouth and avoid creating an arid environment for bacteria to flourish.
Treating Gum Disease in Oklahoma City
At Crossroads Family Dental, we perform gentle professional cleanings to keep your mouth swept clean of harmful bacteria. We keep a keen eye trained on your teeth and gums to monitor any early signs of disease or decay.
If you have developed a more advanced case of gum disease--whether due to time slipping by or another health reason--you’re in good hands! We have treatment options to restore your health and keep you smiling for years to come. Give us a call today (405) 631-0322 to schedule an appointment.
Root Canals: Debunking The Myths
The phrase “root canal” conjures up some unpleasant associations for many people. Some may hear a phantom drill going off. Others may scrunch up their faces in pain just imagining what it might feel like. But they’ve got it all wrong!
When You Know Better, You Feel Better
There are some major misconceptions about root canals out there in our universe, and today we’re going to clear them up. A lack of proper information is generally the cause of any fear or apprehension. Knowing exactly what a root canal is, how it’s done, and why it may be necessary for you can calm any fears you may have.
What Is A Root Canal?
A root canal is the process of removing an infected nerve from the tooth to stop the spread of infection in its tracks and then strengthening the tooth with a dental filling or crown. A root canal restores your dental health and preserves the original structure of the tooth.
Our teeth contain passageways--a main ‘branch’ and other tiny branches that run from the top of the tooth down to the tip of the root. All teeth have between one and four root canals. When the pulp, or innermost chamber of the tooth becomes infected, it can begin negatively affecting the roots, gums and neighboring teeth. This may call for a root canal procedure.
Myth: Root Canals hurt
Au contraire, mon frère! Root canals today are painless procedures.
One of the reasons this myth persists is the origin. In the ‘olden days’, the only treatment for a diseased tooth was tooth extraction! Advancements in modern dentistry have changed root canals completely and they no longer cause the intense discomfort they used to. Today, they save problem teeth with minimally invasive treatment.
Myth: It’s Better to Extract The Infected Tooth
The aim of the root canal--and most restorative dental treatments--is to save the tooth. This is because tooth loss introduces many long term issues that may become expensive and complicated without restorative dental care.
When a tooth is removed, the bone that once supported it shrinks. This causes the surrounding teeth to begin shifting around. From misaligned bites to a change in facial shape, tooth loss and teeth shifting are undesirable outcomes.
Myth: Root Canals Introduce Other Infections
To date, there isn’t any scientific evidence linking root canal-treated teeth and disease anywhere else in the body. If a severe infection in a tooth requires endodontic treatment, that treatment eliminates bacteria from the infected root canal, therefore preventing reinfection.
Root Canal Symptoms
Now that we’ve debunked some myths, you might be feeling empowered about root canal therapy. Here is a little more information for you: how to spot potential signs that you may need to seek treatment. If you are experiencing the following, it is best to schedule a visit with your dentist for a professional examination as soon as possible:
- Consistent pain when biting or chewing
- Increased tooth sensitivity to hot or cold liquids and foods
- Pressure and pain felt within a particular tooth
- An abscess on your gums that releases pus or blood
- Radiating pain in the mouth that worsens over time
You may also have:
- A dental injury that exposes the nerve of the tooth
- A crack in the tooth that extends into the nerve, or large cavity
- A chipped tooth or regular tooth decay may require root canal therapy if left untreated
Your Appointment for Root Canal Therapy In Oklahoma City
The best way to treat root canals is to treat them early. If you are experiencing pain or haven’t been to the dentist in awhile, please give our office a call at 405-631-0322 and we will get you on the path to wellness!
Does My Child Need Braces?
Braces in Oklahoma City
It’s something every parent considers as soon as their children’s baby teeth start falling out and the new ones grow in: does my child need braces?The answer is...maybe!
When Is a Good Time To Get Braces?
We suggest coming to our Oklahoma City office for a friendly consultation when your little one is around 7 years old, or whenever his or her adult teeth begin to come in. Most orthodontic dentistry begins between the ages of 8 and 14. Beginning orthodontic treatment while your child is still growing helps produce optimal results.
Of course, braces can also help adults who have not had orthodontic dental care in the past or who hope to correct gaps or spaces between teeth. Orthodontic dentistry is suitable at any age!
Positive Pediatric Dentistry in Oklahoma City
We believe that each dental visit should be a positive experience. We typically start "happy visits" at around 3-4 years old to get children used to getting their teeth cleaned in a positive environment. When it comes time to discuss orthodontic care such as braces or invisalign, your child or teen can feel confident knowing our Crossroads Family dental team is by their side!
What Do Braces Do?
Braces and other orthodontic treatments are used to correct misaligned bites, or teeth that are crowded or crooked. In some cases your child’s teeth may be straight, but their lower and upper upper jaws do not meet properly. These alignment problems may be genetic or could result from dental injury, tooth loss, or the dreaded but adorable habit of thumbsucking.
In addition to providing your child with a beautiful smile, braces are essential for his or her oral health. They can help to prevent tooth decay, gum disease, tooth loss, and encourage comfortable and natural speech, chewing and bite functions. As you can see, there are many health reasons benefited by orthodontic care, in addition to a beautiful cosmetic smile.
What Are Our Options?
At Crossroads Family Dentistry, we are happy to offer orthodontic options to suit your child’s needs and your budget. These days, traditional braces are lighter in weight and structure than the versions many parents are used to from the 90s. Typically offering fast results with less hassle than traditional metal braces, Invisalign slip easily in and out and are custom designed to straighten your child’s teeth over a shorter period of time than metal braces.
How Long Will I Need To Wear Braces or Invisalign?
Every child is different, but the average length of treatment with traditional braces is about 1 to 3 years. Factors include age, oral hygiene routine, and treatment method. Invisalign can straighten a smile in as little as six months to just over a year depending on your child’s individual dental needs.
Are Your Oldest’s Wisdom Teeth Coming In?
Wisdom teeth are molars found in the very back of the mouth that typically appear in the late teens or early twenties. A simple dental x-ray by our trained dental team can determine if wisdom tooth extraction is needed, which can save you and your family costly dental care by preventing a misaligned bite or crowded smile. As always, if the need for treatment becomes apparent, we will walk you through all options to ensure optimal health, safety, and comfort!
Preparing Your Child For A Healthy Future
At Crossroads Family Dentistry, we want you and your child to feel both excited and confident about your dental health, your dentist and your smile.Call our office at (405) 631-0322 to schedule a friendly consultation for orthodontic or pediatric dentistry. We are proud to serve our community in Oklahoma City as your family dentist and be a part of watching your family grow up in beautiful, healthy smiles with premier orthodontic dentistry.
5 New Year's Resolutions
You Can Smile About
Fresh Start, Fresh Breath
Low Commitment, High Reward
Prevention Saves Money!
Smile More at Crossroads Family Dentistry!
Warm wishes to all of our patients who have become a part of our family over the years! Dr. Underwood, Dr. Dais and Dr. Faulconer want to wish you all a safe, warm and cheerful holiday season, and a great start to the new year!
If you are considering improving your smile before the new year, give us a call at (405) 631-0322 to schedule a consultation. Whether it's a quick but effective teeth whitening treatment or restorative dental care, we can help you learn about your options and find the best dental care to meet your goals.
All About Flossing
If you’ve never had food stuck in your teeth, you’re lying! We all love to indulge in popcorn, caramel apples, potato chips and the infamous leafy greens that often leave a trace in our teeth. But did you know that the most common lie told at the dentist is about how frequently we floss? Studies show that if you’re not flossing, you’re missing up to 35% of the surface of your teeth!
Is Flossing A Myth?
If you’ve heard the hype that flossing is overrated, think again! Food and bacteria that gets trapped in between the teeth break down and release acids into the mouth, wearing on the gums and teeth. Over time, weakened tooth enamel gives way to form a small pocket (or cavity) in the tooth. If left untreated, a small cavity can develop, and you may even need a root canal. Brushing and flossing is one of the best ways to practice preventive dentistry and truly clean your teeth, helping eliminate the bacteria, plaque and food particles that build up, even in small spaces.
Cavities Are No Joke!
Don’t get carried away and forget to floss! Most adults will experience having one or more cavities in their lifetime, and many will be prone to itchy gums, sensitive teeth and gum disease. When a cavity forms at the point of contact between the teeth, they can be much more difficult to treat. That is why it is best to practice a good dental hygiene routine! You may also want to ask your dentist about preventive dentistry with dental sealants and tooth-colored fillings.
How To Floss The RIGHT Way
Do you still have the same dental floss from the last time you saw the dentist? If so, it might be time to start practicing! Flossing can be oddly satisfying--and even a little intimidating--once you find out how effectively it removes buildup from your teeth. Want to become a flossing aficionado? Grab your floss and follow along!
- Start by measuring a strand of floss at about 18 inches (about the length of the forearm for adults). Wrap the floss over each middle finger, leaving a gap of 1-2 inches in between.
- Use your thumbs and index fingers to hold the floss tautly while you slide the strand gently up and down between your teeth.
- Don’t forget to curve the floss around the base of each tooth to reach just below the gumline. As you go, use clean sections of floss for each tooth.
- Avoid snapping or forcing the floss, which can damage the gums or teeth. To remove the floss, gentle guide it back-and-forth to bring it up and over the teeth for easy removal.
Flossing, at least before bed, is an excellent way to celebrate a cleaner mouth and healthier peace of mind. Once flossing becomes a habit, you may be excited to learn how else you can improve your health and keep up a pearly white smile!
At Crossroads Family Dentistry, we look forward to giving you the tools you need to enjoy all the blessings of good oral health and positive memories at the dentist. We can’t wait to see you smile at your next appointment! Give us a call at (405) 631-0322 to schedule a visit to your favorite local dentist in Oklahoma City. As a full-service family dentist we’re proud to serve our local community with gentle dentistry from a compassionate team.
Use it or Lose it!
Fall is here! With only a few months left in 2016, now is the time to take a good look at your dental benefits and FSA accounts. The year is more than half over, are you halfway through your benefits? Your benefits and FSA accounts are “use it or lose it” and we don’t want you to lose your hard earned money or benefits!
Many patients wait until the last minute to schedule appointments at the end of the year, which makes it very difficult to accommodate everyone. Each year our schedule gets very full in November and December. For this reason, we are ready to assist you now with your next appointment so you can avoid losing any dental benefits or incur difficulties in getting an end of the year appointment.
Also, keep in mind that if you wait until next year to get treatment, not only will you lose any unused benefits for this year, but also that you'll have to first satisfy a new year's deductible before any benefits will be paid.
We want to help you make the most of your dental benefits! If you have any questions about your remaining benefits or would like to make an appointment, please call us today.
In Our Office This Month!
Cousin It? Oh wait.....that's Dr. Dais!
We would love to see your smile! Give us a call to set up your appointment.
Is Flossing Officially Overrated?!
Non-Flossers Unite Over New Research
We’ve all been there: reclined in the dental chair saying “ahh” when the dentist asks us about flossing. If you’re like most people, this won’t be the first time you’ll stretch the truth about your regular (or, let’s admit it, irregular) flossing habits. But when a recent report by the Associated Press challenges how effective flossing actually is, media uproar deserves the truth. Is flossing really that important in supporting dental health?
Are We Flossing The Facts?
Flossing has been recommended by dentists for so many years that it’s practically in the lifeblood of every dental practice, and a common topic of discussion. But according to the Department of Agriculture and Human Services, flossing has recently lost its place in the report of dietary guidelines for Americans. To grant the hopes of many non-flossers around the nation, the Associated Press argues that the effectiveness of regular flossing is unproven, and that not enough research has been done. So what are households left to believe?
Studies Are Not Sufficient...Yet
Flossing and dental hygiene studies trusted by the American Dental Association and the American Academy of Periodontology have not made the effects of flossing clear. Recent analysis of these studies reveal that the studies commonly used outdated methods, tested only small subject groups, or were run in too short a time period (such as two weeks) to accurately assess if a cavity or dental disease had developed. So are patients off the hook, and off the floss? Wayne Aldreadge, president of the American Academy of Periodontology, says otherwise.
The Truth Is, It’s Still In Your Teeth
In a statement regarding the recent news, Aldredge argues that insufficient evidence is not equivalent to no evidence at all. He has reported that the effectiveness of flossing could be better proven by researching patients who are at a higher risk of gum disease, including diabetics and smokers. Even the author of the original floss-debunking article, Jeff Donn, comes clean about his regular flossing habits, reporting that he still flosses to remove food stuck in his teeth.
Flossing is “like building a house and not painting two sides of it,” reports Wayne Aldredge, president of the AAP. “Ultimately those two sides are going to rot away quicker.”
We happily brush our teeth to remove harmful plaque, bacteria and debris, prevent gum disease and infection, and achieve that “squeaky clean” feeling that feels oh-so-good and rewarding. But brushing only reaches about 85% of the surface of the teeth, so why limit flossing?
The Advantage of Flossing: Time Will Tell
Gum disease and tooth decay are highly common in adults in America today. These chronic dental issues occur over time as bacteria builds up and forms decay or infection in the mouth. As you snap off a string of dental floss to wind between your fingers and scrub between your teeth, consider that flossing may have many long-term benefits by removing trapped bacteria and debris. For more information about flossing and dental health, talk to your local dentist--they have plenty of floss to get you started with cleaner teeth!
In Our Office This Month!
One of our favorite things is seeing a patient who was scared of the dentist, walk out of our office with no more fear and a beautiful smile. Talk to us about how we can make each visit better for you!
If you’ve ever lost a tooth, you’ll know that living without a full smile can be an uncomfortable and sometimes embarrassing experience. Dental bridges are a comfortable way to replace one or more missing teeth. Give us a call to set up a consultation! Learn more about dental bridges.
Do Women Have Better Oral Health Than Men?
According to the Journal of Periodontology in a study of 800 adults age 18 to 19, women are more likely to demonstrate better dental health overall. So what are the top three things women are doing that men need to know?
#1 Keeping Up With Six Month Appointments
Women are twice as likely as men to see their dentist every six months, whereas men often neglect going due to concerns about the cost. However, neglecting your regular checkup may result in needing significant or costly restorative dental care later on! Preventive dental care saves money, time and peace of mind. Visit your dentist every six months to maintain your optimal dental health.
#2 Oral Health And Periodontal Disease
Did you know women tend to brush and floss more often than men? Women show lower incidences of dental problems at their regular checkups, specifically dental plaque and tartar buildup, or gums that bleed during a regular exam (which may indicate symptoms of periodontal disease). Support your teeth year-round with a good dental hygiene routine at home!
#3 Preventive Care And Sports
From badminton and tennis to basketball and rugby, Summer is the time to get out and play on your favorite team! But before you lace up your cleats or run down the field, consider talking to your dentist about how to protect your smile! Women are more likely than men to invest in protective gear before they play, but all patients are welcome to ask their dentist about personalized mouthguards to protect their smile on the go.
Women, Men, Girls and Boys: Visit Your Dentist!
Regardless of your age, gender or background, maintaining your oral health is important! From this summer to next, be sure to visit your dentist every six months and brush and floss regularly at home!
In Our Office This Month!
Dr. Faulconer coaches his son Hunter's little league team! Let's say it all together now, "Awwwww!"
Is it time for your next cleaning? Give us a ring and we'll fit you in!
Stressed Out? Your Dentist Can Help!
We don’t always know that we’re stressed until we get a headache or a cold. But at your six month appointment your dentist can spot the signs early!
Teeth grinding (bruxism) can develop when we’re feeling anxious, agitated or tense. When we clench or grind our teeth, jaw pain (known as TMJ disorder or TMD) may result in a painful chronic “popping” of our jaw or a jaw that feels stuck when we try to eat or speak.
Has planning your family’s summer camps, annual trips and preparing for the visit of your in-laws had your gums and teeth feeling sensitive? Research by multiple universities has shown a high correlation between emotional stress and the development of gum disease.
Canker sores (or mouth ulcers) may also emerge as our mouth responds to our stressful habits.
To best take care of your teeth in some of your more stressful moments, a visit to the dentist can be all you need! After sitting back for a gentle cleaning and exam, or going home with a soft protective mouthguard, your teeth may feel better and you might feel less weight on your shoulders (and your teeth!).
If it’s time to find your zen with cleaner, healthier teeth, give us a call to book your appointment!
In Our Office This Month!
The doctors took the whole team out for an appreciation lunch! It's great to be able to spend some time together out of the office.
The Crossroads team was psyched up for Game 6 against The Spurs!
Thanks for coming in to see us! If it's time for YOUR six month appointment, give us a call!
The Best Foods For Healthy Teeth
If it’s time to get your beach body ready but push up intervals and sweaty yoga mats simply aren’t your style, you might want to take a pass on Jenny Craig for our advice! With their high nutritional value, PH-changing effects and natural teeth cleaning abilities the following tooth-friendly foods might have you sporting a healthy body and smile even before your order of P90X arrives in the mail!
Top Five Foods For Healthy Teeth!
Dairy: Jam-packed with calcium and protein, cheese and yogurt raise the PH levels in your mouth and fuel your teeth with healthy nutrients for stronger tooth enamel to fend off cavities and decay! The probiotics or “healthy bacteria” in yogurt can also crowd out cavity causing bacteria--just be sure to purchase yogurt that is plain or has no added sugar!
Fruits and Veggies: While your dentist wouldn’t recommend relying on apples to do all the scrubbing of regular brushing and flossing (twice daily, please!), biting into an apple is nature’s natural way to brush away germs and plaque. The next time you’re craving a midday snack, pair some apple slices with a few high fiber carrots and celery to fight off cavities as they trigger healthy saliva production and boost your immune system with vitamins A and C.
Leafy Greens: You know you need more of them but you didn’t know they could benefit your healthy smile! Easy to place into salads, on pizzas, or even in your smoothie, leafy greens like kale and spinach are high in teeth-healthy vitamins and minerals such as calcium and folic acid.
Almonds and Tofu: Not only are nuts like almonds and soybeans high in calcium and protein, but they’re naturally low in sugar! Added to your salad, trail mix or made into milk or tofu, nuts are rich in nutrients and high in fiber to support a healthier smile and body!
Meats and Seafood: You now have one more excuse to go on a date for some tasty salmon or a tender sirloin. Meats, seafood and even citrus fruits and tomatoes contain phosphorous, a mineral that calcium relies on to be absorbed into the body and support healthy bones and teeth.
Your Tooth Happy Fitness Coach
We believe your teeth should look good and feel great for a lifetime! Before the summer hits and you’re ready to show off your pearly whites in a new swimsuit, take the best first step in practicing preventive care for a healthy mouth by coming in for a checkup with us. We’ll give you the treatment and tips you need to enjoy a summer that has you feeling healthy, confident and ready to drift into vacation relaxation!
Give us a call to set up your appointment at (405) 631-0322!
The snow is melting and the flowers are started to show their pretty buds. Spring is here!
Spring represents a time of renewal and reawakening. Time to come out of hibernation! It’s also the time to start cleaning out all of the stuff you acquired over the holidays.
Speaking of cleaning, your teeth might need one, too. It’s important to make sure you see us every six months - even if you’re not experiencing any pain (let’s keep it that way!). If you’re overdue, give us a call.
Schedule your cleaning today and celebrate spring with us!
Dr. Underwood's latest hobby is glass blowing! He's been taking classes with Roy McCallister at Blue Sage Studio in Oklahoma City.
Dr. Underwood transformed this patient's smile with veneers!
Happy 3rd birthday to Dr. Faulconer's daughter Avery! So cute!
Dental Care For Kids
Tooth decay is the most common chronic disease in children, but together we can prevent it! We’ve put together a list to ensure your kiddos are getting top notch dental care at home.
Bring Your Baby To The Dentist
The first step is bringing your child in to see us within 6 months after their first tooth comes in or around their first birthday. Some parents think kids don’t need to come in until their adult teeth come in! At their first visit, we look for early signs of decay, evaluate how teeth are coming in and share oral hygiene tips.
Brush Your Baby/Toddler’s Teeth
Instilling good oral care from the get go will save you time and money in the long run! When your little one’s teeth appear, brush twice a day with an infant toothbrush and or a washcloth. You only need a tiny bit of toothpaste at this age, a pea-sized dab. You can start flossing as soon as they have two teeth that touch each other.
Let’s Talk About Juice
Be mindful of how much of juice you’re giving to your kids and when. If it’s in your baby’s bottle when you put them down for a nap, the sugars in the juice are clinging to their teeth while napping. If you have a toddler drinking juice out of a sippy cup, pay extra attention to the backs of their upper front teeth while brushing.
Ditch The Pacifier
Ween your toddler off of their pacifier around age two or three. Otherwise, it can really impact their tooth alignment.
Show Them What They’re Cleaning Off
Once they’re older, you need to get them to start brushing on their own. Plaque Disclosing Tablets are actually fun for your kids. Once they’re done giggling over their appearance, they can actually see what their tooth cleaning goal is. It helps them understand why you’re insisting they brush their teeth.
Be Firm About 2x2
Your kids (and you!) need to brush their teeth twice a day for two minutes each time. Instilling this in them will help keep their teeth healthy and help you avoid costly dental procedures! Find more fun oral health related activities at 2min2x.org.
Keep It Fun!
Let your children over 5 pick out their own ADA approved toothpastes and toothbrushes. There are so many fun options out there - they even make toothbrushes that look and light up like lightsabers!
Here’s a fun coloring sheet from the ADA!
Toothsavers Brushing Game - This fun app, available for both iPhone and android, gives your kid something to watch while they brush and ensures they brush for the entire 2 minutes. Your kid gets to be a hero and defeat bad guys by brushing them away!
You love your kids and want the best for them! Teaching them how to care for their teeth while they’re young sets them up for life. Follow these tips and hopefully we’ll only see them twice a year for their 6 month check ups!