“Trick or Treat” – Millions of children across the country will repeat this phrase many, many times today on Halloween. Good thing the day after Halloween is deemed “NATIONAL BRUSH DAY!” This new day of awareness, scheduled November 1st is obviously an ideal time to talk with children about the importance of dental hygiene. Leftover Halloween candy is on every child’s mind (and maybe even their parents’ minds) the day or week after Halloween. Some candy is less harmful to your child’s teeth than others. Gummy or sticky candy should be avoided. This kind of candy gets stuck in the deep grooves of molars and can be difficult to remove while brushing and flossing. Sour candies are very acidic and eat away at the surface of your teeth. Candy that melts easily will cause the least amount of harm to your children’s teeth. Monitor your child’s candy consumption to ensure a healthy mouth.
Did you know that the most common childhood chronic disease is tooth decay? According to the 2009 Youth Risk Behavior Survey, “25% of the middle school children in Kentucky responded that they did not brush their teeth on all seven days of the past week.” Untreated tooth decay among children can lead to problems with speech, digestion, and self-esteem. The good news is that daily brushing, flossing, and biannual trips to the dentist can help prevent these problems.
Help your child establish good brushing habits early. Children should use a toothbrush that is an appropriate size for their smaller mouths. Soft-bristle brushes get the job done without causing any discomfort. A pea-sized amount of toothpaste is all your child needs for their brush. Children should be brushing their teeth two times a day for two minutes. Visit the 2min2x website for videos to encourage your child while brushing.