To some, February might mean Valentines Day and chocolate, but for the dental health-conscious, there's another reason February is special – it’s National Children's Dental Health Month.
The month-long national health observance brings together thousands of dedicated dental professionals, health care providers and others to promote the benefits of good oral health to children and adults, caregivers, teachers and many others.
So how will you celebrate?
- One of the best ways you can celebrate is to schedule an appointment with your dentist Columbia Dr. Gregory Wych. Regular cleanings should be performed every 6 months, and the more exposure to the dentist that you give your children, the more comfortable they'll be when they visit the office.
- Did you know that you're supposed to replace your toothbrushes every 3 to 4 months? The ADA warns that frayed bristles decrease the effectiveness of a toothbrush. This month is the perfect time to throw out old toothbrushes and buy new ones. Let your children pick out toothbrushes with their favorite characters on them and toothpaste that they'll like to use.
- The ADA offers coloring pages and activities online to help celebrate National Children's Dental Health Month. You can choose a chart-based coloring page, and have your kids color and customize a reminder to hang in the bathroom as a motivator.
- If your kids typically brush their teeth unsupervised, take some time this month to go with them to the bathroom to oversee their brushing habits. By performing a brushing checkup, you can see what steps your kids are missing and instruct them in the correct way to brush their teeth.
- Because plaque is difficult for children to see, they may not understand why it's so important to brush correctly. Your dentist Columbia suggests a demonstration with your child using a plaque-disclosing tablet will reveal plaque on the teeth. Then point out areas where plaque likes to hide, and invite your kids to brush the color away.
With a focus on oral hygiene and health, NCDHM may be even more important than Valentine's Day this month. By learning about proper dental hygiene as a family, you can get your kids more excited to brush every day and night.
By taking some time to talk to your kids about dental health - and even scheduling a dental checkup with your dentist Columbia Dr. Gregory Wych - you set a good example and precedent for the rest of the year. Why not schedule your child’s appointment today? It’s the perfect way to help them celebrate NCDHM!