Help Your Child Hang on to All Their Adult Teeth

Help your child take care of their adult teeth

We only get two sets of teeth in our lifetime. It is a parent’s responsibility to help children learn the proper oral hygiene habits to protect those baby teeth and keep them healthy and strong. And in teaching children those skills to take care of their baby teeth, parents indirectly teach their children critical skills to protect and maintain their permanent adult teeth. After all, it’s vital that we don’t lose adult teeth, as once they are gone, they are gone forever. So if you are a parent and want to help your children hang on to their adult teeth, this article will tell you how.

7 Ways to Teach Your Children How to Protect and Maintain Their Adult Teeth

Protecting adult teeth all starts with good oral health. Of course, good oral health includes brushing and flossing and going to the dentist, but there is more to it than that. And we know that it is imperative that we don’t lose adult teeth, so check out this list of 7 ways to teach your children how to protect and maintain their adult teeth.

1. Practice good oral hygiene.

Yes, we’re going to start the list with the significance of good oral hygiene. Good oral care habits are critical for keeping teeth and gums strong and healthy. So, teach your children to brush their teeth twice a day, floss once a day, and rinse daily with a fluoridated mouthwash. These basic oral care habits are critical to maintaining healthy adult teeth.

2. Eat a healthy diet.

Eating healthy is vital for your waistline, but it is essential for your teeth and gums too. And the good news is that when you eat healthy foods that are good for your teeth, your body will benefit too. For example, sticky sweets are bad for your teeth as they can get stuck, leaving that sugar to turn into harmful bacteria. But those sticky sweets are high in sugar too, which become excess calories. And too many calories can lead to unnecessary weight gain. And let’s be honest here, teaching your child to eat healthily is just one of the many ways you can help your child prevent cavities.

3. Wear a mouthguard when playing sports.

Most kids love playing sports, but parents need to know that accidents can happen. And since we want to make sure that kids don’t lose adult teeth, we must take steps to protect their teeth when they are playing sports. Certain sports, like basketball, baseball, hockey, soccer, and football, carry higher risks for your kid’s teeth than others, too, due to the great risk of contact or being hit by a ball.. Having your child wear a mouthguard when playing these sports can help to prevent a knocked-out tooth or a chipped or cracked tooth.

4. Be aware of teeth grinding.

Kids grind their teeth, a process referred to as bruxism, for various reasons, including misalignment, stress, pain from an earache, or even a change in routine. Over time, however, teeth grinding can cause teeth to become loose, weakened, chipped, or even broken. The severity of the damage to your child’s permanent teeth increases over time, too, as those teeth weaken and become more susceptible to decay. Eventually, your child’s teeth can become loose enough to fall out. But don’t worry, as your dentist can be the first line of defense against tooth grinding. Taking your child to the dentist for an oral examination and dental cleaning every six months is an excellent way for your child’s dentist to determine if bruxism is an issue.

5. Ask your dentist about getting newly erupted permanent teeth sealed.

Sealants are a great way to protect permanent teeth from decay and can prevent 80% of cavities over two years. Dental sealants provide a protective coating on the chewing surface of the molars and premolars, as these teeth are more challenging to keep clean. Since a toothbrush can’t easily get into these spaces, these back teeth are more likely to harbor bacteria, which causes tooth decay. Thus, a great way to help protect your children’s teeth in the future is to get them sealants now.

6. Don’t ignore cavities.

Many people don’t think of cavities as serious problems. For this reason, cavities are often left to fester. But just as with any other illness, symptoms worsen the longer the situation goes without treatment. And, the longer you wait, the more extensive and expensive the treatment may be. Since the main goal of cavity treatment is to preserve tooth structure, the earlier you treat it, the better, as smaller cavities are easier to treat and provide the greatest chance of leaving a solid tooth structure behind.

7. See an emergency dentist if a permanent tooth gets knocked out.

Like we said earlier, we only get two sets of teeth in our lifetime. Our baby teeth are essentially placeholders for our permanent teeth and serve as a guide for where those permanent teeth should grow. And once those permanent teeth come in, they are meant to last. But accidents do happen. A blow to the mouth or an accident involving the face, such as when participating in contact sports, can knock out an adult tooth. If this happens to your child, reinsert the tooth right away or place it in milk or Hank’s Balanced Salt Solution (never store the tooth in water, yogurt, or contact lens solution) and get to an emergency dentist near you within 30 minutes. The sooner you can seek treatment from an emergency dentist, the better chance your child has of keeping their adult tooth.

Don’t Risk Losing Adult Teeth—Visit Pediatric Dental Specialists to Learn More

If your child is overdue for a dental examination or cleaning and you live in the Omaha, Hastings, Grand Island, or North Platte, Nebraska, area, now is the time to request an appointment with Pediatric Dental Specialists. Getting your child to the dentist is a great way to ensure they don’t lose adult teeth now or in the future.