Dental Health for the Summer ( Tips on Routine, Snacking, and Checkups)
During the summer months, kids are ready to be lazy and just have fun. However, getting off schedule from the regular routine can mean avoiding certain must-dos, such as brushing their teeth. During the summer, you want to be sure that your kids are brushing their teeth and staying on top of their dental health. Below are a few tips to ensure your kids follow quality teeth tactics in the summer months.
Stay on Routine
The first step is to stay on routine. Be sure to have your kids brush their teeth before bed each night, even if they are staying up later. In the morning time, make breakfast a routine and have the kiddos brush their teeth after the first meal. Creating a summer routine will make it easy for kids to remember to brush their teeth and form a habit.
In the summer months, ice cream and sweets are a popular choice. Who doesn’t love a cold milkshake on a hot summer day? While such treats are enjoyable, it is important to limit the sugary items your kids partake in. Consider buying more health conscious snacks, like fruits.
However, young children should avoid fruit juice entirely. The New Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) guidelines say children under one year old should not be given fruit juice. In fact, The New York Times “Well” blog reports that the AAP “toughened its stance against juice,” recommending parents “stop giving fruit juice to children in the first year of life.” The concern is that fruit juice leads to tooth decay and offers no nutritional benefits. The article also explains that some parents think that 100 percent fruit juice is “healthy for babies, or nutritionally equivalent to the fruit itself,”. But, Dr. Steven Abrams, a lead author of the guidelines, says whole fruit generally has more fiber than fruit juice and is less likely to contribute to dental decay.
Continue with Checkups
The school year is typically busy with homework and sports, so it can be hard to keep up with dental appointments. Use the summer months to take your kids to the dentist so they can have their teeth checked and cleaned. The dentist will be able to alert you of any issues, such as a need for braces in the future or cavities. If you continue to have your kids visit the dentist regularly for cleanings and checkups, you are ensuring proper teeth health for years to come.
Floss, Floss, Floss
One habit that should be created while your kids are young is flossing. With flossing, small bits of food are removed from the teeth. Without flossing, issues with the teeth and gums can occur. Getting your kids in the habit of flossing at an early age will ensure that they continue the practice long into their adulthood. Also, be sure to have floss handy in every bathroom.
Overall, it is important that you talk to your kids about their teeth health. Let them know that their permanent teeth are important and that taking care of these teeth are essential, especially as they get older. Also, new AAP guidelines came out stating that children under one year old should not drink fruit juice. If you have any questions, please contact us today. Our friendly staff is here to address any concerns about your child’s dental health.