One of the first things children learn to do is how to give themselves proper oral care, which helps them fight against one of the true dangers of teeth loss: tooth decay. With the help of parents and the children’s local Marietta pediatric dentist, children can be educated on the proper care of their teeth and not have to develop early jitters about undergoing dental procedures throughout their childhood and early adolescence.
Tooth Decay Basics
To protect children from tooth decay, you as a parent need to understand how tooth decay occurs and how it affects the child’s total well-being. People’s mouths are filled with bacteria that live on tongues, teeth, and gums. There are certain types of bacteria that live on teeth that secrete acid when they feed on sugar or starch. Dental plaque is the noticeable form that bacteria leave in its wake; it’s a thin film that forms over the enamel, the result of the accumulation of acid as a byproduct of bacteria feeding on the substances from sweets and starchy foods. Plaque that remains on the teeth leads to weakening of the teeth that makes them susceptible to cavities.
Oral Hygiene Strategies
This is why you’ll want to teach oral hygiene techniques to your children early on. Regular brushing and flossing help remove food fragments stuck between your teeth; if left alone, these food debris will be consumed by bacteria, and starts forming plaque around the teeth.
Brushing and flossing aren’t enough though. Teaching children what to drink and eat also helps them avoid the kind of foods that promote tooth decay. It’s been noted that children who drink soda regularly have a higher incidence of tooth decay.
There are more proactive ways to protect children’s teeth. Keeping regular schedule of visits with the kid’s dentist in Marietta like Dr. Brent Herrin of Herrin Pediatric Dentistry will ensure that your child’s cavities can be fixed before they get worse. Dental cleaning at every visit helps keep cavities at bay, by getting rid of stubborn tartar (solidified dental plaque) as simple brushing alone won’t do. Removing tartar gets rid of a potential source of gum disease and tooth decay.
Another way to prevent tooth decay is the application of dental sealants. Your child’s dentist will apply a layer of plastic over the molars to keep gas, liquids, and food debris from penetrating the fissures and developing plaque. Make an appointment for your child to see his or her pediatric dentist right away, and schedule those visits at least twice a year.
(Source: What Foods Cause Tooth Decay in Children?, KnowYourTeeth)