By tinytexans45006907, Dec 28 2016 05:11AM
The new year is a time for taking stock of what we've accomplished over the last twelve months and thinking about what we'd like to accomplish during the next twelve. It's a time to start fresh on goals that have yet to be reached and a time to double down on the ones that we're making good progress on. Many people make New Year's resolutions that have to do with losing weight, eating more healthily, or exercising more, but good health encompasses more than those actions. This year, why not make a resolution that will have a positive impact on one of the most overlooked facets of your family's health: their mouths and teeth.
As you prepare to work toward your 2017 goals, make time for a little research on age-appropriate oral care milestones for each member of your household. If you have an infant or toddler, resolve take their oral care as seriously as you take your own by remembering to wipe down their gums or budding teeth and/or gently brush any of their erupted teeth twice daily. Remember, good health habits start young! For preschool- and early elementary-aged children, resolve to make teeth brushing a collaborative activity so you can be sure they're reaching all the important nooks and crannies of their mouths, and resolve to introduce flossing and/or mouthwash to your child's routine if you haven't already done so. If you have children older than about second grade (all the way up through high school!), resolve to pay attention to their oral care habits and to have frequent conversations about the short-term and long-term importance of good oral health. Also resolve to read up on the changing factors that affect your kids' mouths as they get older.
If your kids are in preschool or older, talk to them about what New Year's resolutions are and how to choose them. Encourage your kids to include their oral care routine as part of the resolutions they make for 2017, and check in with them periodically to see how well they think they are sticking to their resolutions. Perhaps making sure everyone gets to the dentist twice a year can be a collective family resolution! Mom or Dad may make the appointments, but kids can help remind their parents to make sure all the appointments get made!
When you take an active interest in your children's oral health, and when you encourage them to take an active interest in their own health, each child is much more likely to adopt staying healthy as a goal throughout their entire lives. Over time, this will not only cut down on expenses related to dental and medical procedures, but it will allow everyone to be more active and enjoy all aspects of their lives that much more.
If you need more suggestions for oral health care resolutions, or if you have any questions about the various stages of oral health and development that kids pass through as they grow, don't hesitate to call Tiny Texans Pediatric Dentistry at 512-646-4500.