Parents are rejoicing and kids are groaning, which must mean it is back-to-school time! While you’re checking off your back-to-school to-do list with school supply shopping and figuring out what to pack in school lunches, make sure a visit to Russell Street Dental Associates in Worcester, MA is on there too!
While a visit to the dentist may not seem as fun as that last-minute trip, your child’s oral health is just as important. Cavities are prevalent even among school-age children, so it’s important to make sure they’re off to a healthy start this fall.
Cavity Prevention in Children
Studies show that oral health is linked to overall systemic health. If your child’s teeth aren’t healthy, it weakens their ability to fight off other infections and increases the risk of cavities.
Did you know that over half of children aged 5-9 already have at least one cavity? You can help avoid becoming one of these statistics by encouraging your child to brush their teeth for 2 minutes twice a day. This simple “2 X 2” rule helps keep teeth clean and builds healthy habits from a young age — and parents can follow it, too!
At Russell Street Dental Associates, we take care to show our younger patients how to brush and floss effectively to make sure your child’s teeth last the rest of their lives.
You can also maintain the fight against plaque and cavities by discouraging sugary snacks, including popular sports drinks. Sugar provides plenty of material for oral bacteria to snack on, and when these bacteria are well-fed, they multiply and build up in the form of plaque. This can lead to gum disease and tooth decay.
If your child is especially prone to cavities or if you struggle with a low-sugar diet, you can talk to Dr. Gauthier, Dr. Murray, or Dr. Davis about preventative sealants. This procedure will fill in pits and grooves on molar teeth to make them less favorable for mouth bacteria to settle and erode tooth enamel. This is particularly effective if your child has trouble reaching the back of the mouth with their toothbrush, which many kids do.
Tooth decay is especially prevalent among school-age children, and tooth-related illnesses account for 52 million school hours lost each year! To keep cavities at bay and promote good oral health, make sure you include a dental check-up on your back-to-school to-do list!