Now that summer break is coming to an end and we’re starting to think about getting back into the swing of the school year routine, it’s the perfect time to start planning for a dental exam! It’s easy to let mouth health fall to the wayside during the summer, so fall is a great time to get back on track and start off the school year with freshly cleaned teeth. Plus, scheduling an exam at this time every year makes it easy to remember when you are due for a cleaning!
Did summer fun alter your dental hygiene routines?
During summer break there are many ways that kids might avoid caring for their mouth. As parents, we want to help them stay on top of it… but it’s easy to get caught up in the moment ourselves!
At Reflections Dental Oakville, we’re happy to accommodate your summer routine with flexible appointment times. New to the Oakville or Burlington area? We’re also welcoming new patients!
There are many ways that summer fun can interrupt a good mouth health schedule:
- Staying up late and forgetting to brush before bed
- Summer treats that are less than good for teeth
- Sugary slush drinks that stick to teeth
- Unusual schedules that have them eating at odd times
- Summer fun disrupting the routine of brushing & flossing
Even without a routine, mouth health is important
Late nights and delicious summer treats will throw kids off the routine of brushing and flossing regularly, but it’s still important to incorporate those habits into their daily life. Remind kids to brush twice a day and floss regularly. Especially with all the treats that summer can bring with it, taking care of their teeth is a habit that has to start young. Setting kids up for success when it comes to mouth health might mean fairly constant reminders, but their adult teeth will thank you!
Mouth health doesn’t take summers off
Despite the fun times, delicious foods and unusual schedules that summer brings, taking care of their teeth is still something that kids need to be reminded of. After all, school might take a break, but cavity-causing bacteria doesn’t!
A few ways to make sure kids are following their teeth cleaning routine might include:
- Setting an alarm for every morning and night
- Making a daily to-do list or calendar that has to be checked off every day
- Pre-emptively brushing teeth before leaving the house each day, just in case
- Bringing mouthwash to away-from-home activities, just in case
- If your child wears braces, carry a travel kit with everything they need to clean their teeth
Regular check ups are part of a good routine
Brushing and flossing daily are a necessary part of a good mouth health routine, and so is seeing your dentist! Kids should be seeing their family dentist for a check up and cleaning every 6 months. This not only ensures that their teeth are getting a complete cleaning regularly, it also allows the dentist to stay on top of any potential issues and possible concerns. Things like tooth spacing, brushing trouble spots and early cavity detection are all things your dentist will watch out for and note in their file.
Talking to your dentist about any possible trouble spots will help you know where to focus attention during daily brushing, and help to facilitate a conversation with your child about caring for their teeth. Make sure your child is involved in the conversation with the dentist, as they might be more likely to take the concerns seriously and work hard at caring for their teeth.
See your dentist regularly
Kids especially should be seeing their dentist at least twice a year, but it could be more often depending on their actual oral history. If your child is prone to cavities or seems to be at risk for teeth getting too crowded, your dentist may want to see them more frequently so that any possible problems can be caught early. This may feel like a pain, but seeing the dentist more often and getting a clean bill of mouth health each time is much easier than needing to have work done each time!