As a child I had quite a lot of orthodontic treatment. I had an over crowd in my mouth; too many teeth to fit in my mouth! This meant lots of treatment; teeth removal, a head-brace, an adhesive brace and a retainer. It was long and during that time I really had to keep an eye on my teeth. I had to clean them well, watched what I ate and use a mouthwash. It was worth it. I did have straight teeth and managed no fillings until I was in my 30s.
For my kids, oral hygiene of course is so important. I have no idea what may happen to them as they get older. They may need orthodontic treatment too and looking after their teeth is on the forefront of my mind.
Looking After Your Kid’s Teeth
This is what I have been doing with my girls to ensure their mouths are the healthiest:
– Only offering water and milk as drinks. Very rarely the girls may have some squash or they may ask for a small taste of lemonade but it is so infrequently. Neither are acidic and this avoids the risk of dental caries.
– Both girls use an electric toothbrush and have done since they were about 3 years old. Some children may not take to these immediately and before you buy an expensive one, you may want to try one of these Colgate Minions Battery Toothbrushes. Aimed at children aged 3 years and over, it’s small and will help young children get used to an electric brush.
– Help your children brush. I did this for a long time. I think my eldest daughter was 5 and I was still brushing for her, as I don’t think they reach the back properly. I have to watch my eldest still and she is almost 7.
– Brush twice a day. Sometimes the girls are a bit scatty and I forget to nag them to brush in the morning. If we forget, they just do later on; a while after their morning snack or even lunch.
– Avoid lots of sweets, biscuits and cakes between meals. We usually let the kids have a treat straight after tea. Between meals very rarely.
– Also watch fruit intake, especially dried fruit. My eldest hates fruit, so she may have an apple or some melon but my other two are fruit bats and I have to watch how much they have or try and serve with something else like after a meal or with some yoghurt. Fruit is acidic and can contribute to caries.
– Take them to the dentist young. All 3 of my children have started at the dentist as babies. The dentist would have a look in their mouths when they came with me. This helped to normalise it, as they started to go more frequently.
I know some say baby teeth fall out, so don’t worry as much but I want to instil healthy habits regarding oral hygiene into the girls from a young age.
Adult teeth are for life and this is something my eldest remembers a lot!
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