Trying to get your kids to practice good oral hygiene is not as easy as it sounds, and while you may be able to get them to brush their teeth at night and in the morning, other practices may be out the window. That being said, there may be more things that you have to look out for aside from having your children brush their teeth. In today’s post, we will take a look at a few bad dental habits that your kids may practice and how to go about stopping them.

At Mosaic Dental, we are proud to be the neighborhood family dentist for residents in Sterling and the surrounding areas. We offer an extensive range of services to help you get the dental care that you need, whether you’re interested in adult, child, or cosmetic dentistry. If you are interested in learning more, browse our website, or give us a call at 703-721-7509 to schedule an appointment!

Letting Your Child Carry Around a Sippy Cup

It’s a good thing to want your child to stay hydrated throughout the day, but letting them carry around a sippy cup filled with sugary liquids all day is bad for their oral health. Many parents think that giving their children milk in a sippy cup is a good alternative to juices. However, milk contains more sugar than you may realize, and constantly exposing your child’s teeth to sugar throughout the day can lead to tooth decay.

If you are worried about your child getting enough liquids, then there are other ways in which you can ensure that they are drinking plenty of fluids. One option is to fill their cups with water instead of sugary juices and milk. Water will help wash away any harmful bacteria, and it won’t encourage the development of plaque on their teeth. Additionally, if your child insists on drinking juice, make juice the designated drink with meals and then switch to water after they leave the table.

Thumb Sucking

Most children develop the habit of sucking their thumb when they are young, which is perfectly normal. Thumb sucking usually begins after your little one has stopped using a pacifier, and it is used as a comfort technique. While your child still has their baby teeth, thumb sucking isn’t a problem, but once their baby teeth are replaced by their adult teeth — around ages 4 to 6 — this activity could make it difficult for their adult teeth and jaw to develop correctly.

As the parent, the best thing you can do for your child if you feel that thumb sucking is going to be a problem, is to try and curb the behavior early. Stopping this behavior may be as simple as using positive reinforcement to praise your child when they don’t suck their thumb to trying to identify the triggers that lead to thumb sucking. If you have any questions, or you would like suggestions on how to stop your child from sucking their thumb, contact Mosaic Dental in Sterling today!

Drinking Sugary Sodas Regularly

Everyone enjoys the sweet and sugary treat of a nice cold soda every once in a while, and having these carbonated beverages as a special treat is perfectly fine. However, having a soda becomes a problem for children when their teeth are exposed to the high levels of sugar on a regular basis. It’s no secret that indulging with soda every day is bad for your health. With that in mind, many parents allow their young children to have sugary sodas instead of healthier options.

As your child begins developing their baby teeth, it’s important to prevent tooth decay by brushing their teeth twice a day and avoiding exposure to foods and drinks that are high in sugar. Children ages 1 or 2 who drink soda daily will have a much higher risk of developing tooth decay and other oral hygiene problems than children who have soda once in a while or not at all. The best thing you can do for your child is to provide them with healthier options like water, and save soda as a once-in-a-while special treat.

Avoid Hard Candies

Much like soda, hard candy is difficult to avoid when you have children. You can find hard candy at birthday parties, at school, and they are everywhere at the store. Once your children are exposed to the delicious flavors, there is no turning back. However, hard candy is another item that you should promote as a special treat.

The density of the candy can cause teeth to break or chip if your children bite down too hard, and the sugar content will create plaque on your kiddo’s teeth. Try to only allow your child to have hard candy as a special treat, and never allow them to have a piece right before bed, unless they are going to brush their teeth immediately.

Schedule a Dentist Appointment Today!

In addition to avoiding the bad habits listed above, it’s also important to make sure that your child sees the dentist on a regular basis to ensure that they are getting the very best dental care. Luckily, if you live in Sterling or the surrounding area, Mosaic Dental is proud to be your neighborhood family dentist. Learn more about our dental care services, and give us a call to schedule an appointment today!

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