Cavities and tooth decay is the most common pediatric oral disease in the United States. Nearly 20% of all children in the United States have untreated tooth decay, and these rates are higher in Texas.
Besides tooth decay, common pediatric dental conditions include gingivitis and periodontitis, among others. Poor oral health often contributes to complications like:
- Speech impairments
- Sleeping problems
- Nutritional Deficiencies
- Chronic Health Conditions like:
- Cardiovascular disease
- ENT infections
Considering the risks presented by poor oral hygiene, parents have to make sure that their kids maintain their dental health. Before you can teach your kids how to keep their teeth healthy, you’ll need to understand the basics of dental hygiene yourself. As such, here’s a guide to healthy teeth for children you can use to instruct your kids.
1. How Does Bacteria Grow in the Mouth?
Throughout the day, we eat all sorts of things which can help bacteria grow. Food, no matter how healthy, unfortunately, keeps bacteria healthy. Traces of food in the mouth allow bacteria to thrive in your oral cavity.
2. What are the Symptoms of Bad Oral Hygiene?
Once enough bacteria collect in your mouth, you can feel the physical symptoms of these. Common symptoms of bad oral hygiene are:
- Bad breath
- Sensitive teeth
- Bleeding gums
- Cracked teeth
3. How Does Bad Oral Hygiene Affect the Teeth?
With enough bacteria in your mouth, any extra food you eat and saliva combine to form plaque. Plaque is a yellowish coating on the teeth that develops because of bad oral hygiene —it’s acidic and disintegrates the surface of the tooth.
Once plaque dissolved the tooth’s surface, bacteria attack the sensitive gums underneath.
4. What is Good Oral Hygiene?
Good hygiene isn’t just brushing your teeth, flossing, or using mouthwash. Good oral hygiene refers to how much bacteria you have in your mouth, and with fewer bacteria in your mouth, you will have excellent oral health. With fewer bacteria, your teeth will not decay, nor will you experience any of the symptoms of bad dental health.
5. How Do You Get Good Oral Hygiene?
There are two ways that you can ensure proper oral hygiene for your children:
- Good Nutrition
- Healthy Dental Habits
What is Good Nutrition for the Teeth?
Children should eat very little sugar so that bacteria don’t gather in their mouth. They should also eat plenty of fruits, vegetables and should have plenty of calcium to help make their teeth stronger. With the vitamins in the fruits and vegetables, their immune systems will get better at fighting bacteria and infections.
What are Healthy Dental Habits?
Everyone knows that brushing your teeth after a meal is vital for good oral health. As you regularly brush your teeth, you will have fewer food particles left in the mouth. Furthermore, you should teach your kids to floss and use mouthwash to eliminate bacteria and small food particles from the mouth. It also pays to visit the dentist regularly to make sure that you don’t have an infection.
A thru Z Pediatrics is a collection of primary care pediatrics San Antonio, Texas. With a pediatric medical center at Ewing Halsell and clinics at E.Sonterra Boulevard in San Antonio, we offer a wide range of medical services for babies, children, and adolescent. Contact us today for more information on our services or to make an appointment with our child specialists.