This post was sponsored by Give Kids A Smile as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central and all opinions expressed in my post are my own.
There are a lot of things you can do to help protect your children’s teeth. Our doctor and dentist both give lots of great advice during checkups, and their advice is always best. However, today I am sharing a few real life examples of how we’re starting good dental hygiene habits early with our kids.
Ditching The Bottle
We ditched the bottle by one year for both of our boys. Luckily, neither of them struggled with the transition. This was probably our first step in practicing good dental hygiene early. You can read more about baby bottle tooth decay, here.
Water, not juice.
Next, we prolonged giving our kiddos any juice as long as possible. We started them on water from the beginning, so there wasn’t much protest here, either. This is something our doctor ALWAYS mentions- no juice or soda!
The Proper Sippy Cup
After we ditch the bottle, we try to make sure we’re using the proper sippy cup and getting them away from straws and/or spouts asap.
As soon as our kiddos get teeth, we start brushing. For their first few teeth we do tooth brush, with no paste. Eventually we graduate up to the baby paste that doesn’t need rinsed in very small amounts, and then once they’re old enough to learn how to rinse, we go up to regular fluoride toothpaste. You can use this handy brushing & toothpaste guide.
Finally, regular dentist checkups.
We have a really amazing dentist who our son loves. We took him for his first visit around 3 years old and he’s gone every 6 months since then. I think starting these visits early, too, can also get rid of a lot of anxiety that children might have about the dentist’s office. Find a fun office with staff that really make your child feel comfortable.
There have been many advancements in the availability of dental care for children. However, 42% of children age 2-11 have tooth decay and the dental care is just not as easily accessible in minority and underserved communities. However, this year, Give Kids a Smile, is celebrating their 15th anniversary! What began as a one day event has expanded through the help of volunteers including dentists, dental hygienists, dental assistants, office staff, teachers, school nurses, and more! With the support of the American Dental Association the national program has become a series of 1,300 events in all 50 states reaching more than 5.5 million children.
If you’d like to learn more about Give Kids a Smile, donate, or even volunteer visit their website. Then, go over and give their facebook page a like to help spread awareness about this wonderful initiative.