Oral Hygiene For Kids - Taking care of kids' teeth





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Uploaded on Nov 27, 2007

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How to care for your child's teeth and gums and the importance of early dental care. This discusses proper diet and brushing and flossing technique for maintaining healthy teeth and gums in children. The importance that the parent, the child, and the dentist all three play is emphasized.

See above link for fixed audio or here is script of the original audio:
Oral health is a very important part of a child's overall health and development. The way a child's teeth are cared for early in life can have profound effects on their teeth in the future. This is why learning and practicing good oral health habits can help children grow up with less dental complications and a healthier smile. An important aspect in the overall oral health of a child is their diet. Food products or drinks that are high in sugars lead to increased decay and breakdown of tooth structure. This is why it is important for children to eat well-balanced meals with foods from the five major food groups including meat, fish, or eggs; fruits; vegetables; bread and grain products; and milk, cheese, or yogurts. It is also important that children minimize juices high in sugar and instead drink either milk or water. One of the most important ways to help maintain a healthy smile that is free of decay is proper brushing. Most children will need help with brushing until they are six or seven years old and they will require supervision until about ten. Children should only use a pea sized dot of toothpaste and be sure not to swallow it. To properly brush their teeth, place the toothbrush along the gumline where the gum meets the tooth. Run the toothbrush gently back and forth in small strokes going from one part of the mouth to another making sure to clean all the way back to the last tooth. Be sure to clean all surfaces of the teeth including the outside of the tooth, the sides facing the tongue, and the biting surface. When you are done brushing the teeth, the tongue should be gently brushed as well. A good method for younger children is to have the child sit in the lap of one of the parents and lean their head back into the lap of the other parent. This way one parent can keep the child from moving while the other parent focuses on brushing their teeth. Children should brush twice a day for two minutes. Along with brushing, flossing is also an important tool in maintaining good oral health. Parents will usually need to help their child floss until their child is old enough to floss on their own. Take a piece of floss about the length of your arm and wrap it around your middle fingers and gently hold it with your thumb and index fingers. Gently work the floss back and forth until you can get it inbetween two teeth. Once the floss is between the teeth curl it forward forming a c-shape and slide it up and down so that it rubs against the tooth. Now pull the floss backwards and do the same on the other tooth. Continue this method between all teeth in the mouth making sure not to forget the teeth in the very back. Children should floss once a day. A key player in helping your child maintain good oral health is the dentist. The dentist will be able to check for and treat any existing dental decay as well as monitor proper growth and development of teeth. In addition, up-to-date dental visits will allow the dentist to perform preventive measures such as fluoride treatment and sealants which can help protect the teeth and decrease the need for future dental treatment thus saving both time and money for the patient. Most patients will need to be seen every six months for the cleaning and checkup appointments. Keeping your child's teeth and gums healthy is a team effort between the parent, the child, and the dentist. With proper diet, oral hygiene, and regular dental visits we can all look forward to our children having healthy smiles for years to come.


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