Conveying the importance of dental care to children can be difficult, as the idea of preventative care is new to them. We’ve composed a few tips for teaching dental health and hygiene to your children.
- Practice what you preach.
Your children will likely learn their dental habits from what you do. Explaining the importance of brushing and flossing is a good start, but don’t forget to show them, too! Let them watch you brush your teeth so they can observe proper techniques. As a standard rule of thumb, your child can begin brushing and flossing their own teeth when they can tie their own shoes.
- Help them with what to expect at the dentist.
Plenty of children (and even adults) are afraid of the dentist. Before your child’s first appointment, consult with your dentist and to see if they’re able to walk your child through all the tools and sounds that they might hear during their appointment. Perhaps your child can sit with you during a cleaning before it’s their turn. Knowing what to expect can help put your child at ease.
- Talk to them about teeth-healthy foods.
It’s important to teach your child about proper dental hygiene, but it’s equally as important to teach them about maintaining a healthy diet. Instead of sweets or candy, offer your child fruit as a snack. Explain the different vitamins in fruits that benefit dental health, and how sweets and candies have sugars that can cause cavities and tooth decay.
- Make it fun!
There are plenty of ways to make dental hygiene fun for kids. Whether you allow your child to pick out a toothbrush with their favorite character on it, give them a gold star for every day they brush twice and floss, or let them bring their favorite stuffed animal to the dentist, find a way to get your child excited about practicing good dental care.
The information contained above is intended to be educational in nature, does not constitute medical advice, and should not be relied on as a substitute for actual professional medical advice, care or treatment. If you have any vision, dental or other health related concerns, VBA encourages you to immediately contact your optometrist/ophthalmologist, dentist/orthodontist or any other competent, licensed, medical professional.
VBA dental plans are administered and underwritten by TruAssure and are offered in association with the DenteMax Plus dental network arrangement, which includes participating dentists from the DenteMax, United Concordia and Connection dental networks.