You want the best for your children, including their oral health. After all, their teeth and gums affect their overall health and development. June is Oral Health Month, the perfect time to shed light on the top five common oral health problems children face and practical prevention tips.
Tooth decay happens when bacteria in the mouth produce acids that damage the teeth’s enamel. It can cause cavities, infections, and tooth loss.
To avoid tooth decay, brush your child’s teeth with fluoride toothpaste and a soft-bristled toothbrush twice a day. Floss their teeth once a day to remove plaque and food particles. Reduce their consumption of sweets and acidic beverages, such as candy, soda, and juice. Schedule regular visits to the pediatric dentist for checkups and cleanings.
Gum disease causes the gums to become inflamed, bleed, swell, and get infected. It can also raise the chances of developing diabetes, heart disease, and other problems.
To avoid gum disease, brush your child’s gums and teeth gently with fluoride toothpaste twice daily. Floss their teeth once a day to clean the spaces between the teeth and gums. Have them rinse their mouth with water after eating or drinking. If you see any symptoms of gum disease, such as redness, bleeding, or bad breath, take them to the dentist.
Bad breath, also known as halitosis, is a foul smell from the mouth. Bad breath can affect your little one's self-esteem and social interactions. It can result from poor oral hygiene, dry mouth, infections, or certain foods.
To avoid bad breath, brush your child’s tongue and teeth with fluoride toothpaste twice daily to eliminate bacteria and food particles that can make their breath smell. Have your little one drink enough water throughout the day to keep their mouth moist and avoid dry mouth. Also, steer clear of foods that can cause bad breath, such as garlic, onions, or spicy foods. Schedule an appointment with a pediatric dentist if their bad breath persists or worsens.
Tooth sensitivity is a sharp pain or discomfort that hot, cold, sweet, or sour stimuli cause to the teeth. It can affect your child’s eating and drinking habits and quality of life. Tooth decay, enamel erosion, gum recession, or cracked teeth can cause tooth sensitivity.
To avoid tooth sensitivity, use fluoride toothpaste and a soft toothbrush to strengthen enamel and prevent sensitivity. Avoid giving your child foods and drinks with extreme temperatures or flavors. Use a straw when giving them acidic drinks like soda or juice. If sensitivity persists or affects daily activities, take your little one to a pediatric dentist.
Dental injuries are accidents that can damage the teeth or gums. They can occur when your child falls, bites on something hard, plays sports, or fights. They can cause pain, bleeding, swelling, and tooth loss.
To avoid dental injuries, teach your youngster to walk or run carefully on slippery or uneven surfaces. Do not give them hard or sticky foods that can damage their teeth. Also, have them wear a mouthguard for sports or physical activities. Take them to a pediatric dentist immediately if they sustain an oral injury.
Oral health is vital for children’s overall health and well-being. By following these simple tips, you can help your little one avoid common oral problems and enjoy a healthy smile for life. And with those, Happy Oral Health Month!
For more information on pediatric oral health problems, visit Fort Worth Children’s Dentistry at our Fort Worth, Texas office. Call 817-646-2200 to schedule an appointment today.