As children increase in age their individual focus on overall bodily hygiene begins to become an important factor to their well being. Not only do they need to understand the benefits of maintaining proper cleanliness in their general surroundings throughout the home, like bedrooms or by ensuring the dishes are taken care of but personal hygiene needs to be just as important and worthy of the same priority. The need for maintaining a clean and healthy lifestyle extends beyond an individual’s personal surroundings and onto the body itself - targeting physical hygiene as a trait that needs to also be addressed and given proper consideration for all children.
Just as kids are typically expected to keep a clean room inside their residence, they should also ensure the same care and attention is given to their respective bodies. Good hygiene practices are commonly passed on from parents or caregivers to their children and knowing that oral hygiene is also important can be beneficial to both parents and kids alike. The passing on of good habits from one generation to another, in regards to oral health for many kids and young adults, is established at an early age and seemingly increase as the time passes. For this reason, making the most of an impact at a young age is pivotal in regards to a child’s long-term health.
Continue reading for a list of some different practices that parents can instill in an effort to guide their children into understanding proper oral hygiene, beginning with good teeth brushing habits, which can go a long way in helping to prevent any future medical care.
It’s never too early to start
an oral health care plan and approach for children. Getting kids familiar with brushing their teeth can begin at an early age, even before their teeth are present, as an attempt is made to lay the groundwork for good habits. Not only is it easier to get younger children to begin using a toothbrush, but the understanding of why it is important seems to be fully understood when incorporated at an early age.
Set the Example
Not only can parents help to influence their kid’s oral hygiene practices but their main impact may be made by setting a good personal example. Kids tend to mimic a lot of the same lifestyle choices they witness from the adults around them while growing up and understanding that oral hygiene plays an important role in the daily process for adults allows them to get an idea about what needs to be done in order to accomplish quality oral health. If children witness the adults in their lives having a commitment to quality oral care, they too are likely to continue these same type of behaviors.
Establish a Routine
Along the same lines of setting an example for the little people in our lives, comes establishing a set routine. Just as adults more than likely follow the same routine day in and day out without giving it a second thought, children may also learn to follow the same or a similar agenda. Kids in general typically function better when they are in a set routine with their daily lives. Understanding that certain things happen at specific times can be a key aspect to helping parents deal with many of the challenges that stem from raising a child. By implementing a routine for oral hygiene, at least one practice becomes second nature as the children age - making teeth brushing a quality habit instead of a fuss.
Make It Entertaining
There are a few different ways parents can make brushing teeth fun
with their child, beginning with allowing them to practice on you when first starting out. Give your child a toothbrush and let them clean your teeth or that of their “friends” - stuffed animals and toys. By passing on the aspect of oral health to each and every item, the bond for understanding how important it is can begin to be established.
By playing games, listening to music, or even counting each tooth as it is cleaned - what could be considered a boring and unnecessary chore becomes fun for the entire family.
Involving everyone also allows for kids to see how important oral health is for the entire family and not necessarily something that is only kid specific. By getting all the members of a family to buy into the positive process of teeth brushing and oral hygiene, the good traits become habit forming and can be passed down easier. While creating the routine, having all members complete the daily task of teeth brushing at one time can give young ones something to look forward to during the day or first thing thing in the morning - depending on which time of the day works best for getting everyone involved in the process.
Another component that can be used to make things fun and entertaining for kids is to set a timer. Two minutes is the standard recommendation for how long you should brush your teeth for but a bit longer may also be beneficial. By setting a timer, song, or story to the recommended amount, parents can give kids a better understanding for how long they should be brushing their teeth
on a daily basis while making it an interactive process.
Finally, one of the most important factors to consider when attempting to get young children on board with quality oral hygiene is to understand the many benefits of positive reinforcement. Obviously, rewarding good behavior is useful but having kids who wish to complete the task, first and foremost, is more important and should be treated as such. Keeping children wanting to maintain quality oral hygiene and not worry about any real future damaging aspects is important but remember to never use going to the dentist as a negative. Far too often parents use a phrase about getting cavities and having to see the dentist if they don’t brush their teeth - turning someone there to help them into a bad guy. Instead, establish a good oral health plan with a particular dentist at a young age and guide your kids to understand they are simply part of the overall plan and process for maintaining good hygiene and a healthy lifestyle.
If you’re looking to establish a good oral healthcare plan, facing an oral issue, in need of a teeth straightening method, or looking to correct any potential bite problems, then let the highly trained experts at Prentice Orthodontics
help today. Perhaps you have been referred to seek an orthodontist opinion upon request from the dentist and need help. If so, know that we are able to assist with any and all misalignment issues, while being the only elite Invisalign provider in the area. Whether you are a candidate for that or in need of traditional braces, our professionally trained staff serves to provide a wealth of knowledge while assisting you throughout the entire process and answering any other questions you may have. Serving Broomfield and the surrounding areas, our office can provide assistance with any of your oral needs, including answering any of your questions you may have about the care and procedures associated with all orthodontics. Contact us
today or call 303-468-7722 to schedule your first appointment and get started.