How to prevent tooth decay in children

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Statistics released by the British Dental Association (BDA) reveal that more than 100 children in the United Kingdom have rotten teeth extracted in hospital every day. Furthermore the report has identified that many of these decayed teeth extractions are performed on children between the ages of six and ten. These startling findings are all the more worrying seeing that tooth decay can be easily avoided by taking a positive approach to dental health, beginning with regular check-ups at the dentist in Luton.

The NHS offers useful information to parents on how to best manage their child’s oral health and includes advice such as visiting a dental clinic as soon as the first baby tooth appears.

Top tips to maintain children’s healthy smiles

Just as important as it is for adults to maintain a strict oral hygiene routine, so too, is it for young children to do so.

Prepare a child for their first visit to the dental practitioner

One of the best ways to have a child relaxed for their first dental visit is to prepare them well beforehand. If they know what to expect and the reason for the visit, it will help in keeping them calm in what can be an overwhelming environment – especially if the dental clinic is not a particularly child-friendly one. Also, if the first is a positive one, this will help in the child being more enthusiastic about future visits to the dental clinic.

There are a myriad of ways parents can prepare their child for their first dental clinic visit. Initially parents can talk to their child about his or her teeth, and then introduce books and songs about oral health. Another great idea is to create games around brushing teeth which could include the whole family and make it a fun family activity.

Choose a professional dental practitioner to check a child’s teeth

Parents often make the mistake of relying on a paediatrician to check their child’s teeth. Having a qualified professional dentist do so is far better as these are especially trained to not only identify potential red flags, but can suggest appropriate measures to avoid dental problems in the future.

Start a brushing routine from an early age

kid at the dentist

The earlier parents begin an oral hygiene routine with their child (some start brushing as soon as their child’s first tooth pops up), the better. For this purpose there are toothbrushes available with soft bristles suitable for children’s sensitive gums. Parents can brush gently over the area and with just plain water.

A child’s consistent efforts are key

The more regularly a child brushes their teeth, the more adept they become at it and develop brushing their teeth into a habit so that it becomes a natural part of their day.

Why not introduce a child to the dental environment on an introductory visit before their first proper check-up? Dental practitioners endeavour to be professional, compassionate and patient to ensure a child’s first to the dental clinic is a positive and pleasant one.

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