We hope you and your family are enjoying a healthy and happy holiday season. Christmas is only a week away, which means New Year’s Day is just around the corner. As 2017 draws to a close and your family welcomes 2018, you may want to take a minute to sit down with your children and set some healthy New Year’s resolutions, including resolutions for maintaining a healthy smile! Below we share some of our top New Year’s resolutions for a healthy smile.
Commit to brushing for two minutes, twice a day
According to recommendations from the American Dental Association, your child should be brushing their teeth for two full minutes at least two times each day. If you have fallen out of this habit over the holiday season, or have gotten lax about enforcing the full two minute brush time, the New Year is a great time to get back on track. One easy way to ensure your children are brushing for an actual two minutes is to set a timer on your phone or try out an old-fashioned egg timer.
Improve your brushing technique
Maybe your kids are already good about brushing their teeth twice a day, but how is their tooth brushing technique? When it comes to brushing your teeth, it is critical to use proper methods to fully remove any bacteria and prevent tooth decay. As you start 2018, check in with your children to ensure they are following the below guidelines for proper brushing:
- Always place your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle against your gums
- Use short, gentle strokes
- Be sure to clean the chewing surfaces, outer surfaces, and inner surfaces of the teeth
- Utilize a vertical angle and firm strokes to clean the inner surfaces of your front teeth
Start flossing TODAY
You probably already know that flossing is critical to maintaining a healthy smile. However, flossing is a habit that is easy to fall out of — especially during the busy holiday season. If you are setting New Year’s resolutions for a healthy smile, be sure that maintaining a regular flossing schedule makes the list. If daily flossing sounds too difficult, ease your kids into the habit by getting them to floss twice a week, and slowly increasing it to every day.
Schedule regular dental visits
With busy school year schedules it can be easy to fall out of the habit of routine dental visits. However, six-month check ups are an essential part of maintaining your child’s healthy smile, as it not only prevents cavities and tooth decay, but also allows your dentist to catch any issues early for easier treatment. If your family hasn’t been in for regular dental check ups in a while, make scheduling them a priority in 2018.
If you are setting New Year’s Resolutions for a healthy smile, and want to start 2018 off with a routine dental evaluation, our pediatric dentistry in Chattanooga is here to help! Our children’s dentist office serves Chattanooga and the surrounding areas including Hixson, Signal Mountain, Rossville, Apison, Fort Oglethorpe, Ringgold, Collegedale, and Ooltewah. Contact us today to learn more about maintaining a healthy smile in 2018.