During the month of October, the American Dental Hygienists' Association (ADHA) partners with the Wrigley Oral Healthcare Program (WOHP) to promote National Dental Hygiene Month (NDHM). National Dental Hygiene Month comes around once a year to promote healthy oral hygiene in children and adults.
For parents, it is important to keep your child’s oral health a top priority, especially when they’ll be munching on sugary Halloween treats all month long. So how do you start or refresh the conversation with your child about dental health?
Brush, Floss, Rinse & Chew: The Daily 4
Discuss the importance of the Daily 4 with your child. When you help your child establish a daily routine early on, they'll be well on their way to preventing tooth decay and gum disease for the rest of their lives!
When young children are starting their dental hygiene routine make sure to supervise them throughout the steps.
- Brush: Two is the magic number! Everyday, kids should brush two times a day, for two minutes. A great way for kids to time their two minutes is singing a song (make a brushing playlist)! Kids can sing their ABCs three times to reach the two minute mark.
- Floss: DAILY. Flossing is an essential step in oral hygiene. It helps prevent bad breath as will as plaque buildup which leads to tooth decay. Start flossing for your kids around age four, then teach them the proper techniques for flossing. Remember to be gentle!
- Rinse: Kids can start a daily rinse routine at age 6. Before your child starts using a rinse, practice swishing and spitting with water. Once they get the hang of that, begin using a children’s anticavity fluoride rinse.
- Chew: Sugar-Free chewing gum can be used for on the go oral care after a meal. Chewing can be good for your kids teeth depending on how often and how long they chew. Chewing helps wash away food particles and the action of chewing encourages saliva production.
Want more information on how to educate your child on oral health care or the Daily 4? Check out our dental hygiene FAQs for more information, or you can give us a call. Our staff would be happy to help answer questions or schedule a visit with one of our dentists.
Happy National Dental Hygiene Month!