Want to encourage your kids to develop good oral health habits? Check out these tips from Dr. Khuong Nguyen on!
Many parents strive to teach their children good habits; The lessons taught today could last a lifetime. And when it comes to healthy habits, developing good oral hygiene is vital and can impact your child’s quality of life for years to come. For this reason, the pediatric dentist Dr. Khuong Nguyen share tips on promoting good dental habits.
“Teaching children good dental habits will help ensure they enjoy good oral health not only while growing up, but throughout their lives,” says Dr. Khuong Nguyen. “It’s wise to think carefully about how to promote good dental health.”
Many parents know that their children should brush at least twice a day. Children should also brush their teeth for two minutes each time. If your kids only brush their teeth for about twenty seconds, they are likely to suffer from poor oral health. Likewise, children should floss every day.
Of course, knowing how often and for how long kids (and adults!) should brush their teeth is one thing. Make them do this in another. So how can you get your kids to brush their teeth thoroughly and regularly?
“Positive reinforcement is very important, especially in children,” notes Dr. Khuong Nguyen. “Negative reinforcement is often counterproductive. If you make brushing your teeth seem like a chore, or keep yelling at your kids and demanding that they brush their teeth, they may develop negative associations.”
Positive associations, on the other hand, can do a lot. For example, compliment small children after they brush their teeth. Simply telling your children that you’re proud of them is often enough to develop positive associations with activities like flossing and brushing their teeth.
dr Khuong Nguyen advises parents to get the right tools
Another big thing that helps is having the right tools on hand. Nowadays, people have more options for toothbrushes, dental floss, toothpaste and other utensils. You can often buy products designed specifically for children. It is often advisable to buy child-friendly products.
“Children often have a stronger sense of taste than adults,” emphasizes Dr. Khuong Nguyen. “This means that an adult mint toothpaste can be overwhelming. A specially flavored toothpaste for children encourages them to brush their teeth and also to brush their teeth for a longer period of time.”
If you use adult mint toothpaste, your children may only brush their teeth briefly. On the other hand, a watermelon or bubble gum flavored toothpaste might be more accessible to a child’s taste buds. And so they may brush their teeth more regularly and for longer.
Luckily, there’s fruit-flavored toothpaste with gentle mint that’s specifically designed for kids. They can also offer electric toothbrushes that connect to apps that help kids know how long they should brush their teeth for. Likewise, toothbrushes featuring your child’s favorite heroes or cartoon characters could encourage them to brush their teeth.
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