It’s time to head back to school, are your children’s teeth ready?
Late summer brings a flurry of back to school shopping for clothes, school supplies, and sports equipment, but make sure you also have everything your child will need for good oral hygiene and safety.
A Dental Exam
Most schools require that your child have a physical exam and required vaccinations, but a dental exam is also an important part of back to school preparations.
You may be more worried about kids contracting the flu or the common cold, but according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, tooth decay is one of the most common chronic diseases affecting kids in the United States.
About 20% of kids aged 5-11 and 13% of those aged 12-19 have at least one untreated decayed tooth. Not only are cavities painful, they can lead to difficulty in eating, speaking, and playing. They can also affect learning—a recent study found that kids with poor oral health miss more school and get lower grades than kids with healthy teeth.
Kids have enough to worry about in school without dealing with pain and discomfort from tooth decay. Back to school is the perfect time for a checkup to make sure their teeth are healthy and strong.
Good Dental Habits
As the school year begins, many kids rush out the door after barely eating breakfast, much less brushing their teeth. Back to school is the perfect time to review good brushing and flossing habits. Remind kids to brush twice a day for a full two minutes and floss every day.
If you’re shopping for school supplies, throw in some fluoride toothpaste and a couple of extra toothbrushes—experts recommend changing your toothbrush or toothbrush head every 3-4 months.
Healthy Lunches & Snacks
Whether your child brings a lunch or buys lunch at school, make sure they are eating a balanced meal with a minimum of sweets and sugary drinks. Good lunch and snack foods for healthy teeth include veggies, cheese, nuts and seeds, fresh fruit, and plenty of water.
Custom Mouthguards for Sports
If your child plays a team sport, they are probably required to wear a mouthguard to protect their teeth. While some people buy moldable mouthguards over the counter, the best way to make sure your child has a mouthguard that truly protects their teeth is to get a custom-fit mouthguard.
At Blue Back Dental, we use digital scanning to create a replica of your mouth, which we then use to create a custom mouth guard that fits your mouth comfortably and does a better job of protecting your teeth during sports.
If you need back to school dental care or a custom mouthguard, call Blue Back Dental today!