Dental Tips for Your Pre-Teen From a Children's Dentist
As a children’s dentist, we can treat your family as they grow. We enjoy getting to know our young patients and helping them maintain strong and healthy teeth as they age. This takes effort on your part at home, along with regular care in our office. The goal is to make it possible for your child to avoid common problems like toothaches and cavities. This can be easier said than done, especially as your children enter their preteen years. Busier schedules, changing priorities, and a love of junk food often lands them straight in our dental chair with an emergency. You can help prevent this by using these tips:
#1 - Avoid soda like the plague.
Plain and simple, soda is the enemy. Not only is it full of sugar, but it is also highly acidic. Letting your child have a soda even occasionally is bad for them because the acid can actually erode the enamel on their teeth. This can lead to sensitivity while also increasing their risk of developing cavities. Switch to water instead.
#2 - Help them make better choices.
As a children’s dentist, we are practical about diet and healthy choices. We know that there is no way to prevent your child from ever eating sugar. That will not happen. Even if you ban candy at home, they will get it at school or at a friend's house. What you can do is help your child learn how to make healthier choices when they do have something sweet. Sour candy is the absolute worst for their teeth because it is acidic and full of sugar at the same time. Chocolate bars with caramel are also bad because the sticky caramel can hurt their teeth. With that in mind, if they are getting something sweet, a plain chocolate bar is probably their best bet. Just be sure to have them brush their teeth afterward.
#3 - Give them a mouth-healthy diet.
Your children should eat a diet that is full of lean protein, dairy products, and green leafy veggies. This is the best way to keep their body and their teeth healthy. Make it more fun by including them in the cooking. They may enjoy doing an activity with you enough to enjoy trying new things.
#4 - Buy a mouth guard.
Sports injuries are incredibly common, even in sports that most people think are tame. For example, college basketball players tend to have more mouth injuries than football players. This is because one group does not wear mouth guards and the other does.
#5 - Use an app, song, or show.
There are fun apps you can use to make brushing teeth fun. You can also play a short cartoon or video each time they brush to help them remember to brush for the full two minutes.
Visit Our Children’s Dentist Office
In addition to using these tips at home, you should also visit our children’s dentist office twice a year for a professional teeth cleaning. By removing the plaque and tartar forming on their teeth, we can reduce the likelihood of them developing cavities or infections.