Gov. Cuomo recently announced that dental offices are now opening in New York. However, in-person appointments might be difficult to come by at this time given the high demand. If you want to make sure your kids are continuing to maintain good oral hygiene, here are some helpful tips and a printable tooth-brushing chart to encourage kids to keep their teeth clean.
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How Kids Can Maintain Good Oral Hygiene
Tips for Kids to Keep Up with Oral Hygiene
Practicing good oral hygiene habits are important for kids and parents to learn at a young age which they will continue doing throughout their lives. Especially with dentist offices being closed for so long, it is even more important that parents take the necessary measures when it comes to helping their children maintain good oral hygiene. Babies are born with teeth that are hidden under their gums. In order to make sure that your baby’s teeth will be healthy, parents need to make sure that their babies have healthy gums. Make sure that you wipe your baby’s gums with a soft washcloth after feeding in order to remove any bacteria.
“It is important to maintain a sense of routine during this uncertain time. That includes an oral hygiene routine of brushing twice daily and flossing in the evening,” says Bitesize Pediatric Dentistry. Kids also have a tendency to snack more while they are stuck inside. Bitesize says that it is best for kids to try and avoid stickier food as well as make sure that kids are drinking water immediately after snacking.
Can You Set Up a Virtual Appointment?
Dental practices across New York are setting up virtual dental appointments in order to help their patients with any problems they might have. In order to set up an appointment, you will need to contact your preferred dental practice and choose a time that will work with your schedule. In order to go through with a virtual call, you will need to use either a smartphone or a computer that has a webcam and a working microphone. Not all dental practices are providing virtual appointments, so make sure to check with your local dentist.
What Should Parents Look Out For?
Every parent wants to make sure their kid’s teeth are staying healthy. Many problems come from underneath the teeth or other areas that you can’t see, but there are signs of dental health issues that parents would be able to see. If a parent sees and of these issues, they should contact a dentist as soon as possible:
- Ulcers, sores, or tender areas in the mouth
- Bleeding or swollen gums after flossing
- Chronic bad breath
- Sudden sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures or beverages
- Pain or toothache
- Receding gums
- Cracked or broken teeth
- Frequent dry mouth
- Pain with chewing or biting
- Swelling of the face and cheek
- Clicking of the jaw
If any of the symptoms listed above are accompanied by a high fever, you should seek emergency medical treatment.
Another big problem that could occur is cavities. Cavities can be caused by having limited spacing between teeth, as well as staining and plaque buildup on the molars. In order to maintain cavity-free, parents should make sure that their kids are flossing at an early age in order to fight off plaque buildup. The little things that kids can do, such as continuing to brush their teeth and floss every day, will come a long way! “Parents should play an active role in the oral hygiene habits of their children,” said Bitesize. “A good rule of thumb is — when children can tie their own shoelaces, they typically have the manual dexterity to brush their own teeth”.