You have the responsibility to take care of your children. That’s a very broad term, but it generally means you have to help them grow up right. At first, that often includes making sure they’re being healthy and safe. But at some point, your kids need to take on their own responsibility.
That’s why it’s crucial to help your kids’ dental health by giving them the right dental habits. For example, you can’t always be there to remind them about brushing and flossing.
Call our Winnipeg, MB dental office today at (204) 977-8515 and make your next family dentistry appointment. Our Winnipeg dentists know how to work with children, and because establishing those habits are so important, children three years old and younger can have a free initial visit.
Turning A Good Idea Into A Habit
When they grow up, your children should be able to live independently. Sure, they need to stay in touch with mom and dad! But they also need to function without help. That means giving them great habits. But how do you turn a good idea into a habit?
The keys here are repetition and consistency.
- Repetition means your kids have to do the same activity over and over again. It’s not enough to tell your kids to brush. You have to make sure they keep brushing twice each day — once in the morning and once before bed — repeatedly.
- Consistency means your kids have to repeat these actions for days, weeks, even months in a row. Missing one day is not going to ruin this process, but the more consistent your kids are with these actions, the more likely they will stop thinking about them and accept them as regular parts of their daily lives.
Tips For Giving Great Dental Habits
Here are some ideas for helping your kids have great dental habits that improve their dental health and take a little pressure off the parents.
– Treat fruit juice and diet soda as rare treats.
While it’s true that juice has plenty of vitamins, it also has plenty of sugar. Even the unsweetened kind is bad for your kids’ teeth because sugar feeds the bacteria behind cavities and gum disease. Although diet soda has no sugar, it’s highly acidic. That acid will erode enamel and weaken teeth.
That’s why it’s best to treat both drinks as rare treats to enjoy on special occasions instead of any go-to drink. That way, they don’t get into the habit of drinking stuff that hurts their smiles.
– Make sure your kids see you brushing and flossing.
Children love playing “grown up.” They’re eager to grow up and act like an adult. But that doesn’t just mean they copy what you do — they also avoid doing what they never see you do. If you tell them to brush and floss but they never see you doing the same, they can easily believe dental care is just for children.
You don’t have to stage a big production out of it. But every now and then, make sure your kids see that you brush and floss just like you want them to. This can help turn this into a habit.
– Let your children pick out their own toothbrush.
Because they’re so young, kids cannot have too much control over their lives. Otherwise, they’d eat nothing but junk food and would never get enough sleep. You can take advantage of that to build a great dental habit.
Take your kids to the store and let them pick out their own toothbrush. Giving them a little control over this choice can help make it special to them. This means they’ll be more likely to consistently brush their teeth.
– Make your family’s dental visits around the same time.
As with letting your kids see you brush and floss, you can build great dental habits by making appointments with our Winnipeg, MB dental office for you and your kids around the same time. By seeing you visit a dentist regularly, they’re more likely to view such visits as a normal part of life. That means they’ll visit a dentist regularly themselves.