This month is National Children’s Dental Health Month, observed annually in the month of February with an ADA campaign that brings dental health professionals together to promote the benefits of oral health. The goal is to “promote benefits of good oral health to children, their caregivers, teachers and many others.”
Here at the Kids Cures Foundation we are reminding parents and kids about the importance of taking care of their teeth. By brushing and flossing properly, and staying away from things like soda that can break down tooth enamel. The National Institute of Dental and Craniofcial Research has some reliable brochures for you to check out at this link.
Keeping a child’s teeth in good condition starts as soon as they start growing teeth. It is important as parents to help our kids keep healthy teeth until they are able to brush on their own. Parents should brush kids teeth up to the age of eight, according to the AAPD and floss until 10.
“Fruit, vegetables, cheese, lean meat and nuts are better for teeth than cookies, candy and chips, but children sometimes need encouragement to make those healthy choices. They worry about eating unfamiliar food, and can feel uncomfortable without control over their own diet. If you want to improve your children's eating habits, consider these tips to make the process fun for them.
• Involve your child in buying or growing your food, and let him prepare it for the table.
• Bring your child's favorite teddy to the dinner table. Young children are often happier about eating an unfamiliar food if they have "fed" it to someone else first.
• Make healthy food convenient. Hungry children don't want to wait while you chop carrots, wash an apple or cut cheese into cubes, so have a container of pre-prepared healthy snacks in the refrigerator ready for when a stomach starts to rumble.
• Give your kids a list of healthy snacks, take a trip to the supermarket and let them fill a basket and pay at the checkout. At home, put the snacks in a special box and label it with their names.
• Save sugary and starchy food for mealtimes. The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) says that eating these foods in meals reduces their potential to cause cavities.”
This month we want to help you and your family to talk more about the importance of teeth.