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How Do I Build Healthy Oral Habits for Kids?

As parents, there’s a desire to see your children grow strong and healthy. The same goes when it comes to their oral health. While they’re still young, you want to make sure that they get their healthy oral habits down pat. And doing so ensures their dental success in the future.

Building Healthy Oral Habits for Kids Isn’t Difficult

If you want your kids to have a healthy dental foundation, it’s best to start them young. In the first 5 years, your child’s brain is developing rapidly and will strongly shape his or her future – more so than any other point in their life. From baby to toddler, here are some tips for you:

What Should I Do Once My Baby Starts Teething?

  • Before the first tooth of your child erupts, make sure to wipe his or her gums with a clean, damp washcloth, or gauze. Or, take a baby toothbrush (must be a baby/toddler toothbrush as the bristles are softer), and lightly brush the gums with water on a daily or twice-a-day basis. This can better ensure your baby’s teeth will develop properly with little to no complications.
  • Breastfeed when you can. Baby bottle tooth decay is something that is very much preventable. As long as you clean after your baby every feeding and make sure they don’t have anything sweet in their bottle when they nap, you should be fine. However, to be sure, breastfeeding is the way to go in these cases. Because the milk bypasses the gums and teeth, there’s less incidence of any nasty tooth decay. 
  • Around 4-8 months, your baby will probably start teething. When their teeth come out, brush them twice a day with a soft-bristled toothbrush.

Teething is a fact of life, particularly in your tots. While it isn’t necessarily supposed to be painful, it can be a source of discomfort and distress to your little ones. This doesn’t have to be the case. There are a bunch of quick ways to lessen your child’s discomfort without having to incur further damage. Examples include giving them something cold to suck on and something they can safely nibble. No sweet stuff, though! Healthy oral habits for kids start with the parents.

  • Prescribe a routine you can do to keep your baby’s teeth healthy.
  • If your child has teething pain, there are a few quick remedies you can do. Letting them chew on certain toys can help ease the pain.

How Do I Clean My Child’s Teeth?

After your child’s teeth begin to erupt, it’s time for full-on brushing. While your child will not be able to yet brush their own teeth, it’s important that you as a parent do this twice-a-day task for your toddler and teach them later on as they get older.

  • If your child is under 18 months, gentle and straightforward are the keywords. Use water instead of toothpaste to clean their teeth. Use a soft cloth to wipe those tooth buds gently. To ease teething pains, you can also massage their gums during cleaning. Do this twice a day.

Once your child gets the spitting-after-brushing concept down, this would be the time to introduce a bit of toothpaste, increasing each time until you reach the perfect amount of paste. It’s important to remind them that even though the toothpaste tastes good, it cannot be swallowed and must be spat out.

As they grow older, you can graduate to a soft-bristled brush with a small head. Make use of a little smidge of low-fluoride toothpaste to protect their teeth as they grow. Encourage them to spit out the paste right after brushing. This is a critical healthy oral habit for your kiddo to learn. The sooner, the better. Once they’re around 2-3 years of age, you can have them graduate to your typical tube of toothpaste.

Remember, brush and floss daily! Since children may be unsure what to do. That said, set an example for them through exhibiting proper brushing techniques. Always remind them to brush their teeth properly, and floss for them in the meantime so that they can get used to this activity.

Your Child’s Pediatric Dentist is Your Friend

When faced with where to take your child for their first dental visit, your first instinct might be to take them to your general dentist. This isn’t a bad idea, per se—it’s a convenient way to have your family’s dental needs in check. But if your child starts exhibiting fear of the dentist at an early age or might need some extra TLC on their teeth, you might want to head to a pediatric dentist instead. Because they’re trained in handling younger patients, they’ll not only be able to calm your child’s frazzled nerves, but they can also help you better your kid’s oral health as well.

All of these healthy oral habits for kids combined can better guarantee that your child will end up with better oral health now and in the future.

Here are 5 simple steps to encourage healthy living for everyone:

#1 Consume healthy foods for oral health and overall well-being.

In truth, altering one or two elements of your diet can make a remarkable impact on your overall wellness in the long run. Try slightly alternating or even adding healthy ingredients to your favorite snacks or dishes. This way, it’ll be both something you enjoy and something greatly appreciated by your body.

For instance, if you often crave potato chips, consider making kale chips as a healthy alternative. If you love chocolate, make a healthy trail mix with various nuts, berries, and of course, your much-loved chocolate.

Through this method, you’re still getting your craving without overindulging, and of course, you are still consuming something healthy. You can always experiment and try greener, healthier options for snacking. Avoid sugary and starchy foods as much as possible.

#2 Make your physical activities fun-filled.

You can encourage your loved ones to participate in physical activity through various fun-filled games. A few of these activities include freeze jump, playing on a spring-free trampoline, and participating in sports.

Colorful sportswear, music, and work-out apps are also encouraging for involvement in exercise. Make physical activity memorable and competitive — Try competing with friends to see who can run the most miles throughout the span of a week, for instance.

#3 Sleep more.

Getting enough sleep is quite pivotal. It matters to keep a constant routine of going to bed and getting up at the same time daily.

Needless to say, this is one of the best approaches to remain healthy. Take into consideration that with consistent sleep, you’ll feel more recharged and capable of surviving the day with might and good mood.

#4 Drink more water.

Admittedly, many of us do not drink the recommended fluid amount, which is at least eight glasses each day. More than 60-percent of our body is made up of water, which is why water is essential for our body to function.

Water is necessary to carry oxygen and nutrients around the body, eliminate waste, and hydrate our organs. We need to replenish our fluid intake because we lose water when we breathe, perspire, urinate, and eliminate body waste.

#5 Maintain good oral health.

Take care of your teeth, gums, and entire mouth. Practice good oral hygiene, and visit the dentist regularly. Keep in mind that oral health can have a great impact on your overall well-being.

8 Useful And Fun Dental Apps For Your Kids

Disney Magic Timer

Google Play | iTunes

Disney has introduced a lot of characters in our children’s lives such as princesses, talking animals, fairies, mermaids, and talking cars. Children and adults alike undoubtedly enjoy these very characters.

And now the company that makes magic happen now has an app that can “magically” make your kids love brushing.

In partnership with Oral-B, powered by Dream Play, Disney and Marvel have come together to bring more fun to your brushing routine with Disney Magic Timer.

The application features 23 of your kids’ favorite Disney, Marvel, and Star Wars characters that will encourage your children to brush longer and help them keep track of their brushing. As a result, children can enjoy healthier teeth alongside their favorite Disney pals.

Aquafresh Brush Time

Google Play | iTunes

A new hero is coming to save your kids from cavities and oral health problems. Aquafresh Brush Time shows kids a fun way to brush all parts of the teeth with the help of Captain Aquafresh and the Nurdles.

The app has catchy songs and dances to get little ones to engage in two-minute brushing sessions. Additionally, endless dance mix-ups are also available for a variety every brush time.

Dentist Office – Dental Teeth Games Simulator

Google Play | iTunes

In this simple and interactive application, kids get the opportunity to sit in the dentist’s chair. Dentist Office – Dental Teeth Games Simulator familiarizes children with dental procedures and tools. Specifically, children can choose to conduct over nine different procedures including dental cleaning, a root canal, tooth extraction, teeth cleaning, and crown placement. As a result, children can feel more comfortable when these procedures are potentially done on them in real life.

Brush DJ

Google Play | iTunes

Brush DJ is a free and award-winning application which functions as a toothbrush timer that plays two minutes of music. It also allows the user to set reminders for changing their tooth, brushing at least twice a day, flossing, using mouthwash, and visiting the dentist. The app also has short, animated tutorial videos.

Tiny Dentist

Google Play | iTunes

Tiny Dentist turns your smartphone or tablet into a dental office. Thus, your children can get to know different dental instruments and treatments. Your child will have fun interacting with different patients with various dental problems. It has a kid-friendly interface that makes learning as fun as playing. As a result, this helps children form positive associations with tools and procedures that they may otherwise fear.

Chomper Chums

Google Play | iTunes

Chomper Chums is a dental hygiene mobile app that enables parents to help their child learn proper brushing techniques. Therefore, children can learn to establish long-lasting, healthy oral wellness habits. The app introduces three fun, friendly, and lovable animal characters. It uses colorful animations and gives rewards when the child brushes twice a day for two minutes each session.

Brush my Teeth – Happy Dentist

iTunes

Brush my Teeth – Happy Dentist simulates brushing of the teeth, flossing, using mouthwash through a game. Specifically, it teaches kids about proper oral hygiene and the importance of it. It also features a dentist office game where kids can use dental tools like a pincer, flosser, scrubber, and toothbrush to care for virtual teeth.

Toothsavers Brushing Game

Toothsavers Brushing Game situates kids in a story to save the fairytale kingdom using a toothbrush. Children will have two minutes to brush and scrub away the spell for each of the kingdom’s inhabitants which an evil sorceress casts. The app features 10 colorful characters and uses simple swipes and taps in playing.

 

4 Catchy Tunes For Your Child’s Toothbrush Time

While early on, parents care for the children’s teeth, it’s important that children eventually learn to care for their own. After all, your children will not stay children forever. Even older children must engage in the act of tooth-brushing on their own eventually. However, not all children get the opportunity to be properly taught to brush.

Learning to brush their teeth will set them up for a lifetime of healthy smiles. As a result, they will be less likely to develop cavities and other harmful, oral-related conditions in the near future. Fortunately, this also usually means they will be more likely to have healthy teeth for life.

So, what can be done? Fortunately, there are many tooth-brushing songs out there for children to teach them the importance of brushing their teeth:

“Brush Your Teeth” by StoryBots

Lyrics:

Up, down, front and behind
Brush ’em all around, ’til they sparkle and shine
‘Cause cavities are meanies, and meanies don’t belong in your mouth!

So everybody do the chh-chh-chh-chh, chh, chh
Like your dentist taught ya, go chh-chh-chh-chh, chh, chh

If you like to nibble, gnaw, bite
Munch and crunch
If you like chewin & chompin’, and chowin’ down lunch
Then don’t brush like you’re in a rush
Scrub ’em every which way!

So everybody do the chh-chh-chh-chh, chh, chh
Now all together, do the chh-chh-chh-chh, chh, chh

And when you open your mouth to speak
You don’t want your breath smelling like rhinoceros feet!
So ya better brush up on your brushin’!

Everybody do the chh-chh-chh-chh, chh, chh
Like your dentist taught ya, go chh-chh-chh-chh, chh, chh
Come on people, do the chh-chh-chh-chh, chh, chh
Go brush your teeth!

“Brushing Song” by Videogyan 3D Rhymes

Lyrics:

I get up in the morning
and go to brush my teeth
I take the brush, drop the paste
And go round and round

Round and round, round and round
up and down n up and down

Round and round, round and round
up and down n up and down

Brushing keeps our teeth
Healthy and clean
Every morning every night
I brush my teeth to make it bright

“The Toothbrush Song” by Andrew Huang

Lyrics:

Oh, we’re gonna brush our teeth (x3)
Hey hey, hey hey

Oh, we’re gonna brush our teeth (you gotta brush ’em) (x3)
Hey hey, hey hey (you gotta brush ’em)

The brightness of your pearly whites is priceless
It’s righteous, you don’t want that gingivitis
I might just brush twice or thrice, i like this
I need fresh breath to be rocking a mic with
My philosophy’s to floss my teeth properly
Then pop this wee toothpaste cap off
You gotta squeeze more than just a drop on these bristles
Put the brush under the tap, give it a drizzle

And then we’re brushing ’round and ’round

Chorus
We’re brushing side to side
We’re brushing up and down
Open your mouth up wide
We’re brushing: front to back. back to front. tooth by tooth
Until we get every one

Oh, we’re gonna brush our teeth (x3)
Hey hey, hey hey

Oh, we’re gonna brush our teeth (you gotta brush ’em) (x3)
Hey hey, hey hey (you gotta brush ’em)

Now when you’re brushing your teeth
Don’t be too rough on your gums
And try to always remember
You should be brushing your tongue
From the front to the back
Attacking the plaque on your teeth
‘Cause if your chiclets went and fell out
Well then how would you eat?
To keep your breath smelling fresh and your teeth real strong
You only need to brush for about the length of this song
So once in the morning and once at night, let’s sing it
Hold on, my mouth’s got so much toothpaste in it!

Repeat chorus

Oh, we’re gonna brush our teeth (x3)
Hey hey, hey hey

Oh, we’re gonna brush our teeth (you gotta brush ’em) (x3)
Hey hey

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