Cavities in Kids: How to End this Terrible Cycle
It may seem inevitable but your child does not have to suffer the recurring pain of cavities. We often assume that at some point our child will develop a cavity given the nature of this ongoing battle. And while yes, cavities are more prevalent in children, you can incorporate methods of prevention early on. Since there are certain foods and behavior that adults, unlike kids, recognize as damaging to our teeth, you’ll want to apply similar oral health practices. First, let’s explore what may be causing those pesky cavities.
Common Causes of Cavities in Kids
What your child eats matters most to the health of his or her teeth, especially since adult teeth are developing. Since certain foods tend to create issues, you’ll want to limit or apply a practice for brushing after eating these foods. These foods and beverages include, as you may have guessed it, candy and all sugary soft drinks!
- Sticky candies like gummies, taffy, licorice, and caramels tend to stick to the teeth and without proper removal, the sugar will result in tooth decay. Whenever your child eats sticky candy, be sure to have them rinse their mouth to remove any left behind bits.
- Sugary drinks like soda and juices when consumed on a regular basis eventually result in weaker teeth. The sugar left behind turns into acid that eats away the enamel of teeth. Teeth will appear thinner, weaker, and more susceptible to cavities. The best method of prevention is to limit your child’s consumption of sugary drinks as much as possible. Instead, opt for water and milk.
In addition to foods and beverages, these habits can also lead to cavities:
- Dry mouth. A lack of saliva in the mouth is a symptom known as dry mouth. Since saliva fights off acid from bacteria, a lack of saliva can lead to tooth decay. Make sure your child drinking plenty of water to prevent this from happening!
- Eating before bed. You want to have your child brush his or her teeth before bed and avoid eating thereafter! When kids eat before bed, the debris from food stays trapped inside and that bacteria may cause decay.
How to Prevent Cavities
Now that we know a few of the causes of cavities, let’s explore prevention! The one important item to keep in mind is that brushing teeth at least twice a day can make a significant difference. Teaching your child early on how critical it is to have a clean mouth will help him or her develop healthy habits. Here are a few tips to help:
- Turn brushing into a game. Play some upbeat music and turn the routine into a party! Most kids associate brushing teeth as a chore so when you make the ritual a positive experience, they are more likely to look forward to it rather than avoiding it.
- Encourage siblings to take part. Younger children look up to their older brother or sister and when they do things together it encourages the younger sibling to follow in their steps.
- Visit your local Kids Dentist. Along with brushing twice a day, visiting your local dentist every six months will help detect any trouble before it gets worse. Your local Kids Dentist will spot any potential cavities and treat it. Your dentist will also offer recommendations that are specific to your child’s teeth.
Your Reliable Kids Dentist in El Paso is Only a Phone Call Away
At Ricardo Chavez, DDS General Dentistry, our Kids Dentist is committed to ensuring your son or daughter’s teeth are in the best shape possible. We do so by encouraging you to bring them in for routine exams and cleanings. Please contact us today to schedule an appointment!