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Supporting Your Child’s Dental Health During COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected all businesses, including our dental offices. Staying informed on how to care for your child’s dental health during this time is a great way to be a part of the solution. 

While daily tooth brushing and flossing make a big impact on maintaining your child’s dental health, we also want to encourage parents to be aware of common dental concerns that may pop up during times of stress. Listed below are some helpful tips on how to help your child to continue practicing good oral hygiene during this time:

Daily Dental Hygiene 

One of the most reliable ways to prevent tooth decay in children is to get them excited about daily dental hygiene! Building a consistent routine around twice-daily toothbrushing and daily flossing will keep your child’s teeth clean and healthy. 

While brushing their teeth might not be your child’s favorite activity, allowing your child to choose a toothbrush (perhaps one that’s their favorite color!) and a child-safe recommended toothpaste will help them feel excited and in control of the situation. 

Teaching your child proper techniques when it comes to brushing their teeth can help encourage them to develop good oral health habits for their early years and beyond. Setting a timer or playing a song is a great way to motivate your child to brush their teeth for the recommended two minutes. 

Reducing the Likelihood of Teeth Grinding 

Teeth grinding is a common habit that develops in response to higher amounts of stress in children, teens, and adults. Adopting a relaxing bedtime routine for your child can help reduce the likelihood of them grinding their teeth in their sleep. Try breathing exercises, relaxation techniques, and other therapies to help them feel comfortable before going to bed. Be sure to mention any signs of teeth grinding at your next dental appointment.

Healthy Diets Lead to Healthy Smiles 

Ensuring that your child is eating a well-balanced diet will do great work to promote both their dental and overall health. Reduce the likelihood of tooth decay during this stressful time by limiting their intake of soda, candy, and other sugary substances. Offering healthy alternatives can be a helpful way to make the transition easier!

Discouraging Thumb Sucking 

Smaller children may turn to sucking their thumb as a way to calm themselves when feeling anxious or afraid. While this is a common habit among children, it’s important to encourage your child to stop by trying these tips:

  • Place a sock over the hand they typically place in their mouth and remind them not to suck on their thumb or fingers
  • Talk to your child about their fears and discuss other ways to release stress
  • Find alternative ways to relax them before going to sleep. Reading a short story before bedtime can be an easy way to help them calm down. 

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