A new school year means a lot of changes, including those to your child's normal routines. As summer comes to a close and life is about getting up early, doing homework, and rushing to activities, it is a great time to revamp your child's oral hygiene routines.
Maybe you got a little lax during the summer months with later bedtimes, tired kids that didn't want to brush their teeth, and lazy mornings that meant kids weren't doing their oral hygiene routine until early afternoon. Now is the perfect time to pick those habits back up and get them back on track!
Talk about the Importance of Brushing
Start off by taking the time to talk to your kids about the importance of brushing their teeth first thing in the morning. As you want to keep them as healthy as possible so that they do not miss school or other important activities, their mouth plays an important role.
Without proper tooth brushing, you could put your child at risk for tooth decay, gum disease, and even physical illnesses. You don't need to scare your child with all of the statistics, just stress the importance of not putting up a fight when it is time to brush his teeth in the morning.
Discuss Healthy Snacks and their Importance
Kids will want junk food in their lunch; it is only natural. This is especially true if they see their peers eating candy, Twinkies, and chocolate chip cookies every day. Educate your child on the importance of oral health and the role that eating right plays in it. Healthy food means a lower chance of having sugar, acids, and bacteria on his teeth all day long.
If he is away from you for 6 hours and then rushing around to activities after that, chances are that food is going to sit on his teeth for many long hours, putting him at risk for tooth decay. Let your child help in choosing fun yet healthy snacks that he can consume during the school day that will keep his teeth healthy.
Don't Get Too Tired for Nighttime Brushing
Many parents and kids are guilty of this! Nighttime comes and you are so tired that you turn in without brushing your teeth. This does not set a good example for your kids nor does it do their oral health any good. Instead, make it a habit to brush your children's teeth right after dinner. This will help to make the routine stick and prevent the risk of anyone being too tired to brush at night.
This is also the best time of the day to floss your child's teeth, but you can choose between morning and night, opting for the time that he is most likely to be cooperative rather than fussing over this habit.
The earlier that you start these new routines with your child, the better you will be. Soon enough he will be back on track. With new start times, teachers, and friends changing his routines, now is the perfect time to add a few more routines in there that will suddenly become a natural part of his life.
If your child is a visual learner, make signs or charts to put up in the bathroom and his bedroom so that he knows what is expected of him. In the beginning, you might have to guide him along the way, but eventually the routine will stick and it will just be a natural part of his day to brush and floss his teeth!
If you have any questions or would like to schedule an appointment, please call us at Orthodontics: (415) 681-8500 Pediatric Office: (415) 661-8383 today.