Skip to main content

5 Easy Ways to Reduce Your Child's Cavity Risk

February is National Children’s Dental Health Month. Cavities are a common oral health problem, and children can be especially vulnerable as they learn to brush and floss adequately. Sugary snacks and drinks are also a common culprit in childhood tooth decay and other health problems.

Our dentists Dr. Nathalie Phaeton, Dr. Ki Youn Kil, and our team at Oasis Pediatric Dental Care & Orthodontics offer pediatric dentistry services and orthodontic care at our office in Falls Church, Virginia.

5 easy ways to reduce your child’s cavity risk

It’s never too early to prioritize your child’s oral health. In fact, more than half of children between the ages of six and eight have at least one cavity in their baby teeth according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Here are five things you can do to reduce your child’s cavity risk, and help to set them up for a lifetime of good oral health:

1. Take them to the dentist

Your child’s first dental appointment is an important milestone in their oral health journey. Our dentists recommend that you schedule an appointment for a check-up and cleaning by your child’s first birthday. 

Regular dental care is important to monitor your child’s oral health and development, and to help your child become comfortable and familiar with the dentist’s office. Having a dental home can help your child deal with fear and anxiety, and feel safe going to the dentist. 

2. Develop a consistent brushing and flossing routine

Younger children need help brushing and flossing until they perfect their own technique and can adequately brush and floss on their own. Try to establish a consistent routine where they brush and floss their teeth at the same time every day, like after meals and before they go to bed, to set them up with good oral hygiene habits.

3. Encourage them to choose healthier snacks

Drinks and snacks for children are notoriously high in sugar and calories. In addition to brushing and flossing, eating a healthy diet is key to your child’s oral health. While it’s fine to enjoy their favorite snacks and treats in moderation, eating a balanced and healthy diet is as important for children as it is for adults. 

Healthy snacks that are also good for your child’s teeth include:

Water is also important for your child’s oral hygiene. It helps to keep bacteria from sticking to their teeth, and prevents dehydration.

4. Use the right toothbrush and toothpaste

Choose a toothbrush with soft bristles, and fluoride toothpaste. Let your child pick out their favorite toothbrush to get them excited about brushing their teeth, and replace the toothbrush every few months or when the bristles start to bend.

5. Practice prevention

In addition to good oral hygiene and regular dental visits, preventive treatments like sealants can help protect your child’s teeth from cavities. Sealants cover the chewing surface of the teeth to make it easier for your child to brush, and they prevent food particles and bacteria from getting in between the teeth and causing cavities.

With good oral hygiene habits and preventive care, your child can avoid the cavity trap.

For more information about cavity prevention and treatment, or to schedule an appointment for your child, contact Oasis Pediatric Dental Care and Orthodontics today.

You Might Also Enjoy...

Knocked-Out Baby Tooth: Is it a Dental Emergency?

Baby teeth are temporary, so does it matter when a baby tooth is knocked out? Here’s what you need to know about when a knocked-out baby tooth requires dental treatment, and if it’s a dental emergency.
5 Unexpected Benefits of Dental Sealants

5 Unexpected Benefits of Dental Sealants

Dental sealants can be a valuable tool in protecting your children’s teeth from cavities. Here’s what you need to know about how they work, and the benefits of investing in sealants for your children.
Bruxism in Children: What to Look for and How to Treat It

Bruxism in Children: What to Look for and How to Treat It

Many children grind their teeth while they sleep, which is also known as bruxism. Bruxism can cause a number of symptoms and potentially cause damage to your child’s teeth. Here’s what you need to know about the symptoms and treatment options.
4 Ways to Start Taking Care of Your Baby's Oral Health

4 Ways to Start Taking Care of Your Baby's Oral Health

It’s never too early to prioritize and focus on your baby’s oral health. Here’s what you need to know about when to take your baby to the dentist for the first time, and how to take care of their oral health as they get older.

Sealants: Why Every Child Should get Them

Prevention is the best protection, especially when it comes to your child’s oral health. Here’s what you need to know about dental sealants, and whether they’re a good option for your child.