Putting the Brakes on Dental Decay in Kids

One-fourth of the nation’s children have 80 percent of the nation’s tooth decay, Dawn Klingensmith reports for Quad-Cities Online. According to Klingensmith’s article, “Protecting a child’s smile, one brushing at a time,” oral infection is the number one chronic disease in kids.

Reasons for this include lax parenting, ignorance about dental care, frequent snacking on starches and sweets, and constant nursing on bottles and sippy cups. In addition, many parents tend to think baby teeth matter less because they “fall out anyway.” This leads to fewer brushings, which contributes to premature loss of baby teeth and potential long-term problems.

Klingensmith turned to our own Dr. MyLinh Ngo for advice on snapping out of bad habits on the oral hygiene front:

“Plaque harbors cavity-causing bacteria, and if not cleared off your child’s teeth thoroughly each day, it will cause cavities to form,” Dr. Ngo tells Quad-Cities Online.

In addition to daily care, Dr. Ngo recommends smart snacking by avoiding sticky foods like fruit roll ups, and taking the kids in to see a dentist by their first birthday. This helps prevent plaque build-up and establish a routine of regular professional care.

Another helpful tip: by taking care of their own teeth, parents and caregivers give kids a better chance of avoiding cavities!

“Make sure everyone involved in their care has good oral hygiene and good oral health,” Dr. Ngo says. “This ensures that there will be a lower bacterial load that can potentially be transferred to the baby through saliva on toys, ‘pre-tasted’ foods, shared cups and utensils, or through close contact.”

Read Klingensmith’s full article here:  http://www.qconline.com/archives/qco/display.php?id=596371

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