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    How to Prevent Kids’ Cavities

    How to Prevent Kids’ Cavities

    Cavities are not an uncommon problem with children between the ages of 2 to 11. According to the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), 42% of this age group struggle with cavities in their baby teeth. If not properly taken care of, decay in primary teeth can spread to permanent teeth. Tooth decay can be prevented with the right knowledge and oral health care. Dr. Kimmy’s goal is to inform you how to teach your kids the proper way of brushing and flossing so that their healthy smile can last a lifetime.

    Preventive checkups are extremely important for children of all ages! Schedule your child’s checkup in Manhasset NY with Dr. Kimmy today. Call 516-365-4-KID.

    Helpful Hints to Deter Cavities

    Keeping your kids on a healthy diet will help prevent cavities. Starchy or sugary snacks and drinks are hard on tooth enamel. As bacteria feed on starches (sugar is a starch), they create acid, which softens enamel by leeching calcium and phosphorous. Bacteria can then attack the soft tooth in these demineralized locations. Ultimately, the bacteria eat the tooth structure and leave decay behind.

    SNACKS

    Letting a child snack throughout the day is a sure way to promote cavities. When children get hungry throughout the day, crunchy vegetables and fruits are a much healthier option than sugar-laden candies and starchy chips and crackers. While filling their bellies with these healthier snacks, crunchy, uncooked veggies and fruits will also scrub plaque from their teeth. Make the switch from Gatorade and Kool-Aid to pure water, as the go-to beverage in your house. Water not only rinses bacteria and acid from the mouth, but it hydrates the entire body.

    HYGIENE

    Dental hygiene is imperative to deter cavities. Encouraging children to brush their teeth between meals, as well as in the morning and before bed, is the best dental hygiene practice. Flossing is a great preventive measure against cavities and tooth decay, though most children and adults neglect this preventive measure. Kids will need help flossing until they develop the muscle memory of how to floss and recognize the importance of it. Parents, this is where your job really matters. Lead by example and teach your kids how important flossing is to you. Make flossing a family affair!

    FLUORIDE

    Fluoride is extremely important in the remineralization of your children’s teeth. Bacteria and plaque feed on sugar and carbohydrates, in doing so they release acids. The acid extracts essential minerals from tooth enamel. Too much mineral loss allows bacteria to create tooth decay.

    Once a child reaches age three, he is less likely to swallow toothpaste while brushing teeth. At this age, Dr. Kimmy recommends that you begin using fluoridated toothpaste in your child’s daily oral health routine. Drinking tap water is also a great way to ensure fluoride makes it into your kid’s diet. Bottled water does not contain fluoride, in most cases, while most tap water in the United States is treated with fluoride.

    Dr. Kimmy can administer a topical treatment following your child’s dental cleaning, but daily intake is important for children. Kids’ bodies apply ingested fluoride to growing teeth, making them strong from the inside out. This is not so for adults. Because our teeth are already full grown, only topical fluoride is beneficial for cavity prevention in adults.

    Schedule Regular Checkups

    Caring for your kids’ teeth is one of the most important things for their health at this age. Preventive dental appointments are a big part of keeping your child’s smile healthy, and prioritizing checkups in childhood will establish a good routine for adulthood. Nothing would make us happier to schedule a checkup to keep your kids’ teeth strong and beautiful. Call our Manhasset, NY, pediatric dental office today at (516) 365-4-KID.

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