5 Tips to Your Kids’ Dental Hygiene

Take care of your kids' teeth. They might be temporary milk teeth, but it'll be a pity if they bite into an apple and go "Aaaa!" like a 1990s Colgate ad.If teaching your kids to brush their teeth properly and regularly is like, err, pulling teeth, check out this clever tips. Your little ones will be flashing those pearly whites and chomping their way to good oral hygiene in no time…It’s a daily battle many parents face – getting their kids to brush their teeth properly. In fact, a whopping 50% of all six-year-old Australian children have experienced tooth decay in their baby teeth, according to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. Baby teeth are important because they help guide the adult teeth developing underneath into the right place. If your child loses their baby teeth early, it can result in the need for orthodontic treatment down the track. Worse, up to half of twelve-year-olds have experienced decay in their permanent teeth. Yep, they’re jaw-dropping statistics. The adult dental hygiene statistics aren’t too pearly either, with one in six Australian adults unable to remember the last time they went to the dentist. Gulp. But there is an easy way to reverse the trend. With Dental Health Week fast on our heels, esteemed dentist of 30 years and Philips Sonicare Ambassador, Dr David Dunn, has these easy tips for teaching your kids to brush their teeth properly. Yep, you can smile now!

1. Help Them Brush

You can’t really just hand a youngling a toothbrush and leave them to their own devices – they need help. So get hands on! “Children often don’t brush effectively until they are eight or nine years old, so supervision is key,” says Dr Dunn, who is the Principle Dentist at Macquarie Street Centre in Sydney. “Assist in brushing to ensure your child is forming the right technique.”And remember, brush twice daily after meals! When my son was a toddler, I’d show him the gentle circular movements on both my chompers and his teeth, using a soft-bristled small toothbrush. I experimented with different toothpastes and found a few which he actually likes the taste of and rotates according to his flavour of the day. Jack N’ Jill have a certified organic toothpaste range, and the Raspberry flavour is delish! He’s also a fan of the very grown-up Colgate Sensitive Pro Relief toothpaste. This is the opposite of the sweet Raspberry toothpaste. It has a minty and cooling flavour and contains fluoride, which helps protect teeth against tooth decay. If you haven’t taken your child to the dentist yet, book him in. It’s recommended children have their first visit from age one, or within six months of their first tooth appearing.

2. Get Brushing Together!

Yep, it’s tricky assisting the kids, holding your own toothbrush and trying to give good instructions with a mouthful of froth, but it’s worth the juggle. “Brushing with your children places importance on routine and forming good habits,” explains Dr Dunn. “Make it fun, rather than a chore.” Squeezing a pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste – which they shouldn’t swallow – can actually be fun for kids. It’s the only time they can spit without getting into trouble! If you’re struggling to get them to commit to brushing for the recommended minimum two minutes, grab an egg timer, stop watch, or play a two to three minute song. That should liven things up a notch.

3. Arm Them With A Great Toothbrush

It can be tempting to just choose the Spiderman or Disney Princess toothbrush, but whatever you opt for, make sure it has soft bristles. “A good toothbrush can mean all the difference,” says Dr Dunn. “The Philips Sonicare for Kids offers maximum plaque removal for children aged four and older. The product comes with customised stickers and educational tools to help improve brushing.”

4. Start Flossing Early, Floss!

All that bacteria and icky food build up between teeth is not good, so get the magic white string out early. “Instil the importance of flossing from a young age,” advises Dr Dunn. “Start flossing as soon as your child’s teeth touch together.” Help your child learn to gently floss between teeth daily for optimum oral hygiene.

5. Skip The Sugar

We all know that kids need a healthy, well-balanced diet consisting of fresh wholefoods, dairy and lean meats, but of, those macaroons can be so tempting sometimes. But according to Dr Dunn, every smart food choice helps. “Cutting down on extra sugary treats throughout the week can make all the difference in the dentist’s chair.”This Post is from here