Help Your Kids Enjoy Summer with Healthy Smiles

Did you know that more children experience dental emergencies and tooth pain during the summer months? Our pediatric dentist in Vista can help you and your family be prepared before a painful injury or toothache occurs. Here are just a few tips to keep in mind:

Ask About Dental Sealants | Vista

Protective dental sealants block out cavity-causing bacteria, lowering your child’s risk of developing decay. Sealants are for the deep grooves and fissures on the back teeth, which are harder to clean. Applying a sealant only takes a few minutes but can safeguard a smile for years.

Invest in an Athletic Mouthguard

Did you know that the summer months are one of the most frequent times for children to experience dental injuries? Oral-facial injuries make up some of the most common traumas seen in summertime activities.

Our pediatric dentist in Vista frequently sees broken and knocked-out teeth from activities such as soccer, cycling, gymnastics, baseball, and more. Wearing a professionally fitted athletic mouthguard will protect your child from chipped teeth and lacerations, but most importantly, it can also reduce their chances of developing a concussion.

Download a Toothbrushing App

Today there are lots of fun apps that you can download on your phone or tablet to keep kids engaged in toothbrushing. Some even pair with particular brands of toothbrushes. Most of them are focused on keeping your child brushing long and often enough, while some guide them through the different areas of their mouth that need to be cleaned.

Depending on your child’s preferences, certain toothbrushing apps allow you to select characters or earn in-app rewards/tokens to keep them motivated. And best of all, they’re completely free.

Have Healthy Snacks on Hand

Choosing the right type of snacks can help promote better oral health and reduce the risk of decay. When in doubt, try to avoid packaged, processed foods, especially crackers and chips as they promote heavier plaque on teeth.

Some tooth-healthy snack options include:

• Apple slices
• Carrot sticks
• Popcorn
• Sharp cheddar cheese
• Whole-grain crackers with hummus
• Roasted nuts

If you are going to indulge in a snow cone or ice cream now and then, remind your child to rinse with water right afterward. This step will help neutralize bacteria until they can brush their teeth.

Upgrade Their Toothbrush

If your kids are home for the summer, they have more time to brush their teeth. Today there are lots of fun toothbrushing options out there. From light-up designs to brushes that play songs, there’s something for everyone. The added engagement makes toothbrushing more fun, especially for kids who need a bit of encouragement.

Our pediatric dentist in Vista recommends having your child brush twice a day for a minimum of two minutes at a time. But if they’re at home instead of away at camp, try to get your child to brush mid-day as well.

Encourage Children to Drink Plenty of Water

Sports drinks and juice contain plenty of natural sugars and sweeteners. In fact, some sports drinks are “worse” on teeth than soda. To help your child stay hydrated (as well as routinely rinse away acids/bacteria) get them to drink plenty of water every day. Invest in fun, refillable water bottles to keep them excited about their water intake, whether it’s at home or on the soccer field.

Get Caught Up on Cleanings

How long has it been since your child’s last checkup? All Smiles offers children’s dental cleanings near you. To keep your child’s teeth healthy, plan on scheduling a dental exam in Vista at least once every six months. During their visit, we’ll share ways to practice good oral hygiene (at age-appropriate levels), make smart dietary choices, and screen for dental concerns while they’re in the earliest stages.

Book an appointment with Dr. Houri today.

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