The summer is drawing to an end, so water parks are closing, the weather is cooling down, and your kiddos are going back to school. Before sending them off to class, make sure that their oral health is in the best shape possible by following a few simple suggestions brought to you by Valley Ridge Family Dental.
Schedule a Checkup
Toothaches cause kids to miss about one million days of school each year! Even if they’re in class, kids can’t concentrate if their teeth hurt. Unfortunately, some children fail to report their toothaches, so an estimated 22% of kids run around with untreated cavities. Missed classes and pain might be avoided if children brush and floss daily, then attended six-month dental exams and cleanings to nip dental problems in the bud.
Teach Kids Healthy Habits
Maintaining good oral hygiene is just as important as coming in for regular checkups and cleanings. In addition to flossing daily, teach your child to brush twice a day for two minutes each time. Make brushing fun. There are now Internet videos that children can watch for two minutes while they brush their teeth. Watching TV can make two minutes fly by, so kids who watch the videos are more likely to brush thoroughly. If you don’t condone TV before school, consider singing a song for two minutes. The ABC song works well for little ones.
Pack a Healthy Lunch
Teaching your children to eat well can help with their concentration, energy level, and dental health. Avoid pre-packaged foods, and take time to pack a nutritious lunch for your children. Here are a few ideas for creating a healthy lunch your kids will love.
- Replace chips with whole grain crackers.
- Replace applesauce with real apples. The sauce usually contains about 21 grams of sugar per serving!
- Avoid granola bars. They contain a shockingly high amount of sugar.
- Pack cheese sticks, because calcium is good for teeth and bones.
- Instead of cream-filled chocolate cookies, opt for vanilla wafers. They have less than half the sugar.
- Stay away from sodas. Encourage your kids to drink milk or water.
Don’t hesitate to bring your little one to Valley Ridge Family Dental to see our trusted Dr. Jessica Johnson before classes start. Call us at (515) 223-9764 to schedule your child’s visit today. We proudly serve West Des Moines, Waukee, Clive, Urbandale, and surrounding Des Moines metro communities.