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Pediatric Office Open in St. Helens, OR
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500 North Columbia Rver Hwy, Suite 505
St. Helens, OR, 97051
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Posted on 6/25/2015 by William Moore
|It can be exciting when your child becomes independent, but tooth brushing is not something that you should let him handle all on his own. There are many ramifications that can occur as a result of poor tooth brushing including:
All it takes is a few minutes of your time to watch over your child while he brushes his teeth. If your child balks at the idea of you always being around as he is learning his independence, make it a rule that you jump in every other time that he brushes his teeth or something at a similar frequency to ensure that he is getting the job done right.
Watch Your Child's Brushing TechniqueEven if your child is in the bathroom brushing his teeth for 2 minutes or more, he might not be doing it right. This is one of the main reasons you need to keep a watch over him. If he is simply scraping haphazardly through his mouth, he will not be doing the job right. Instead, he needs to be working in slow, circular motions throughout his entire mouth. It is best to start in one quadrant and work his way around to the other three after 30 seconds of brushing has been up. This ensures that he gets to all areas of his mouth, especially those back corners that tend to decay the easiest from neglect.
Watch his Time
This one is a common culprit of most kids. They think that if they hit all areas of their mouth for just a few seconds, they are good. While they might be getting every tooth, there is no way that they are getting all of the bacteria out of their mouth with just a quick swipe here and there. If you are there with your child, time him so that he knows how long he should be spending in each area. Next to technique, time is very important in order to eliminate the sugar and bacteria that will linger and cause decay or infection.
Watch for Swallowing
Children should not swallow toothpaste as it has fluoride in it and will cause their digestive system to get upset. If your child is rather young, you should be there every time that he brushes, ensuring that he is not only not swallowing, but not using too much toothpaste to start with. Help him see how much a dime size amount of toothpaste is and encourage him to spit rather than swallow. If you are there watching him, you will know what goes down and what doesn't, ensuring the overall health of not only his mouth, but his digestive system too.
A little independence in your children can be exciting, but it can be dangerous too. If your child is over the age of 6 or 7, you can give him a little leeway when it comes to brushing on his own, but not too much! Anyone younger than that, however, should have constant supervision from you to ensure that proper oral hygiene habits are kept up. Even after your child hits over 7-years old, however, it is not a bad idea to check in with him to see how his oral health habits are coming along. Everyone, even adults, get caught up in being busy and rushing through every day habits. Rather than letting your child succumb to those issues and putting himself at risk for decay, help him out once in a while with a simple reminder.
If it is time for your child's pediatric dentist checkup, please call us today at (503) 438-7145 to set up an appointment!