5 Simple Tips to Keep Your Child’s Smile Cavity-Free
What’s the best type of cavity? The type that never started in the first place.
No one wants to watch their child in pain, let alone the expense and hassle of treating a cavity. So when it comes to keeping your child out of the dental chair, the best course of action is prevention.
It was once thought that cavities were inevitable – that some people just had cavity-prone teeth that would get cavities no matter what they did. However, we’ve come a long way in our understanding of how cavities are formed and how to prevent them.
Follow these five simple tips to keep your child’s mouth cavity-free.
Tip 1: Monitor munching
pH measures the acidic activity in the mouth. When oral pH levels are low (5.5), there’s an increased risk of tooth decay and gum disease. A neutral pH (7.0) or higher is ideal for the support of a healthy mouth. Therefore, the best way to keep a child’s mouth healthy is by regulating the pH levels.
There are many strategies you can employ to keep your child’s oral pH levels from dropping too much during the day. Make sure they are eating three hearty meals a day and try to limit snacking too much. If they do snack, have them get into the habit of rinsing with water or chewing some xylitol gum immediately after. Avoid purchasing acidic beverages like soda (even diet!), sports drinks and juice boxes. Stick with good old-fashioned water or milk.
Tip 2: Not your grandmother’s toothbrush
Toothbrushes and the experience of brushing has come a long way. Let your kids choose a toothbrush that they like to increase the chances of them brushing daily. These days, there are toothbrushes that light up, play music, and have pictures of your child’s favorite superheroes. Let your child pick a brush that they love and they will get excited to use it. If they are having trouble brushing long enough, there are fun toothbrush timer apps that kids can follow and be entertained while they clean! If you or your child have a history of cavities or your dentist tells you your child is at a higher risk, consider using CariFree’s CTx3 Gel as it contains non-abrasive acids and xylitol to neutralizes pH levels.
Tip 3: Keep their mouth in the acid-free zone
Bacteria in the plaque or biofilm are altered based on their environment. If your child eats, drinks or has a dry mouth, the bad bacteria will thrive. This is because as the pH of your child’s mouth drops under 5.5, the bad oral bacteria begin to grow and take over the good bacteria. Although you can’t completely prevent acid from forming, focus on teaching your child good oral habits to keep acidity to a minimum.
Help your kids cut down on snacking between meals. The pH drops every time your child eats or drinks (no matter if that food or drink is acidic or not). This drop in pH lasts approximately 20 minutes before settling down. If your kids are constantly snacking throughout the day, they are increasing the risks of developing decay.
Tip 4. Watch out for vertical transmission
Vertical transmission occurs when mothers pass bacterial infections to their child by fluid (such as saliva or milk) or through the placenta. Because dental caries is transmissible, this can increase the risks of the child developing dental caries.
To minimize such risks, avoid using your mouth to clean things such as your child’s pacifier or baby bottle nipple. Don’t let them share their cups, straws, and utensils with their friends. Lastly, brush and floss daily and chew xylitol-containing gum following meals to keep the pH levels healthy.
Tip 5. Get a risk assessment test
If you are unsure whether your child is at risk of getting cavities, the best way to find out is by visiting your dentist for a risk assessment test. During the CariScreen risk assessment test, the bacteria in the saliva will be tested to determine if it’s healthy for their teeth.
Your dentist will take a sample by rubbing a cotton swab against your child’s lower teeth. Your dentist will then mix it inside a tube and run it through a machine. The test will show the pH levels and whether your child should take extra precautions to protect against cavities.
As you can see, keeping your child’s smile cavity-free is pretty easy. All is takes is a bit of care, patience, and practice to keep their smile healthy.
For more information on how CTx3 Gel can help your child’s teeth, our friendly helpful staff will be happy to help you. You can contact us at (800) 503-0625 or firstname.lastname@example.org to find more information. You’re only a call away from a healthier smile.
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