February is Children's Dental Month so we will be talking about the care of baby's teeth. On the WLDY talkline show, Friday, February 26, one of our local dentists, Dr. Stephen Reisner will be on the show and will take any of your questions. Dr. Reisner and his staff have donated countless hours visiting area preschools, helping children learn the importance of eating healthy foods and learning to brush and floss their teeth correctly. However, just as with all areas of development, key routines are not learned om the yearly visit to the dentist or the week long preschool lesson on dental health. Key routines are learned within families who prioritize these routines. Only families make dental care a priority by helping children to brush, floss, and by providing healthy foods to grow strong teeth.
Baby teeth are important! Children need strong, healthy teeth to chew their food, speak clearly, and have a great-looking smile. Baby teeth keep a space in the jaw for the adult teeth. If a baby tooth is lost early, the teeth beside it drifts into the empty space. When it's time for the adult teeth to come in, there may not be enough room. This can make the teeth crooked or crowded.
I have two tidbits of wisdom to share with you as you think of how to improve your routines for your child and for yourself. The first is about brushing teeth. Is there a day that passes that you do not eat? On those days that you do not eat, can you skip brushing your teeth. The second is about flossing. This one, told to me almost ten years ago by my son-in-law changed my flossing habits forever! Of course you don't need to floss all your teeth every day, just floss the ones you want to keep.
I hope these silly musings put a smile on your face as you think about how you may begin to make changes in the routines you have to improve your child's oral health. Next week we will speak more seriously on the beginnings of healthy teeth
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