As the summer vacations and days of loose routines start to wind down, it’s time to start thinking about how to help our kids ease back into school while still maintaining their beautiful and healthy smiles. Let’s face it. With summer comes easier days. Everything seems more relaxed, more carefree…even having the time to focus on proper oral hygiene for the little ones. It doesn’t seem like such a big chore (or war?) during the summer months. I’ve compiled a list of easy tips to hopefully help you and your children ease back into the approaching new school year with healthy smiles for all.
With a few short weeks left in summer, there’s no time like the present to make your children’s dental appointment and get them in for a cleaning before school starts. We all know how the start of a school year goes. It’s like a whirlwind of activity and you usually don’t know whether you’re coming or going most days. Why not schedule their appointments before your life resumes it’s chaotic pace? Not only will they start the school year with beautiful, clean smiles, but it’ll be one more “to do” you can knock off of your list, too. It’s a win-win for the whole family.
Encourage Healthy Eating & Drinking Habits
Do me a favor. Put your phones, iPads, tablets, TV remotes, etc., down for 5 minutes and sit down with your kids and talk. Talk about what eating and drinking junk does to their teeth and the damages it causes, both long and short term. You know that saying, “Do as I say, not as I do”? Throw that right out the window. If you want your children to make healthier choices, they’re going to be watching you too. It takes the whole family to be on board for this to work. But think of the great oral hygiene you’re teaching your children along the way. Start small and build up as you move along. For example, say your kids are big soda or sugary juice drinkers. Instill a rule that they’re allowed these drinks only at certain times, such as once a week or during special celebrations. The rest of the time, swap them out with something more beneficial to their oral health like water or milk. The same goes for food, especially when they’re eating 5-10 meals or snacks away from you every day. Instead of sugary cookies, chips, and crackers, encourage them to swap them out for nuts, veggies and dip, fruits, and cheese.
Dental Care Kit
I know, I know. Come September and the start of school, it will be all you have to pack their lunches, never mind adding another thing to your list. But I promise you, this one will pay off and your kids will thank you later (maybe much later, but they will). Get a bag or a box, it doesn’t have to be anything fancy. Make it easy on you. It can be something as simple as a Ziploc freezer bag or a little bit “more” like a pencil box or bag. Fill it with a few on-the-go things that your kids can easily use during their school day. Some examples are a travel size toothbrush and toothpaste, floss, bottled water, healthy snacks, and sugar free gum.
Establish a Good Routine Early On
As you know, kids thrive off of routine. With a few weeks left until school starts back up, what better time to start establishing good oral hygiene routines with them again in preparation for the school year. Set up a schedule or a calendar so that your kids know when it’s time to brush and floss. A lot of kids like to see things in front of their faces. Write it on the family calendar hanging on the fridge, set an alarm to go off at the same time every day (that fits into your own crazy routine) as a reminder. You know your kids best so you know what kind of schedule/calendar/reminder system will work best for them. You can motivate them by letting them pick out a new toothbrush or play their favorite song for 2 minutes while they brush. Routines don’t have to be boring; make it fun! The whole family can join in on this one.
The staff at Charmoy Dental wishes you and your family a happy, relaxed end to this summer and start of another school year. Call us at 973-584-0008 to schedule your child’s back to school dental cleaning today!
Children’s Checkup Age 2-17yrs only $89! ($230 value)
Regular value $215 -New Patient Children’s Special *coupon must be presented at time of service*.