The school year is starting. In addition to buying school supplies and thinking about classes, you may want to take some time to think about your child’s oral health — a healthy smile can go a long way when trying to make friends, while decay and cavities can lead to pain and missed days of school. Take a look at these tips from a pediatric dentist.


Leave Time for Brushing

The school year is busy, and mornings can be especially hectic. Try to set up your child’s morning routine so they have ample time to brush. Wake them up early enough so they can spend two minutes brushing and flossing.

Also, don’t forget to have your child brush before bed. Brushing can be part of a bedtime routine that helps to wind your child down and get them ready for the earlier bedtimes of the school year.


Choose Healthy Snacks

When packing your child’s lunch box, try not to stock it with fruit snacks, candy, or sugary treats that will stick to their teeth throughout the day. Instead, this pediatric dentists suggests that you try to focus on foods that are healthy for your child’s body and their oral healthy. Crunchy fruit and vegetables such as apples or carrot sticks are ideal because they have a lot of vitamins, but their crunchy texture also helps to clean your child’s teeth.


Pack Sugar-Free Drinks

If your child’s school has a soda machine or an on-site store that sells pop, you may want to arm your child with alternatives. Avoiding sugary sodas can be easier if your child has something else that feels at least a little bit indulgent. Consider trying flavored waters, ice tea without sugar, yogurt smoothies in a thermos to keep them cold, or other drinks.


Think About Sugar-Free Gum

Your pediatric dentist has probably already told you about the importance of brushing after every meal, but that isn’t always easy to do when you’re at school. If your child wants to brush in the school bathroom, buy them a little kit with travel-size toothpaste and a brush to put in their locker or backpack. Alternatively, you can rely on sugar-free gum. As your child chews it, it helps to clean their teeth.


Organize an Orthodontic Kit

If your child has braces, make sure they have everything they need to stay comfortable throughout the day. Put together a care pack of wax for rubbing wires as well as floss, a floss threader, and a dental mirror in cases something gets stuck in their braces. If they have removable retainers, give them a colorful container so they have something to put their retainer into while eating.


Schedule Routine Dental Care

The beginning of the school year is also a great time to catch up on your child’s routine dental appointments. If they haven’t seen the pediatric dentist for a while and they don’t have an appointment scheduled, call and set up an appointment. Routine dental care during the early years can help to protect your child’s dental health for the rest of their life.

To set up an appointment with a pediatric dentist, contact us today. At Nia Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontics, we offer a fun, inviting atmosphere for children and teens as well as high quality dental care.