Parents may be risking the dental health of their children

Without knowing it, many parents could be encouraging bad habits in their children that can put their dental health at risk and even, they could even be directly transmitting their cavities. This is indicated by the results of the Delta Dental Oral Health Survey 2013, just released in February.

Although tooth decay is almost 100% preventable, more than one in four American parents reported that their children received dental fillings in the last year. Among children who had caries in the last year, 53% had two or more cavities.

Parents should teach good oral health habits to their children at an early age to help prevent cavities. The conservation of milk teeth is very important, because their presence in the mouth helps children to chew and speak correctly, in addition to maintaining space for permanent teeth. If a child has healthy milk teeth, it is likely that he or she will have healthy teeth during adulthood.

These are some of bad habits that affect the oral health of children:

According to the survey: About 75% of parents admit that they share utensils, such as spoons, forks or glasses, with their children.

Eliminate habits that allow the transfer of saliva? How to share utensils, toothbrushes or clean the pacifier with your mouth. These activities can transmit harmful bacteria to a child.

According to the survey: 49% of Americans with a child 4 years old or younger reported that the child sometimes naps or goes to bed with a bottle or cup to sip with milk or juice.

Parents should substitute milk, juice, sugar water or soft drinks, which can cause decay, for water.

According to the survey: Among children who have seen the dentist, the average age of the first visit was 3 years.

Children should first visit the dentist for the first six months after their first tooth erupts and not after their first birthday.

According to the survey: Only 58% of children brush their teeth twice a day and 34% do so for less than two minutes.

The small children’s teeth should be brushed twice a day for at least two minutes at a time. Parents should help with this task until the children are close to 6 years of age.

According to the survey: At least 43% of parents admitted that their children never use dental floss, and those who do, only 23% do so every day.

Once two teeth are touched, parents should floss or help their child do it once a day.