We all know that it’s a good idea to help your child have clean and healthy teeth, but it may be difficult to know when to start taking them to the dentist or how to help them form the best dental habits while they’re growing up. And let’s be honest, it’s not always the easiest task to get kids to take care of their teeth and avoid cavities. So, we turned to Dr. Holloway from Floss Dental Boutique for some pro tips on kiddo dental health as well as a really cool Tooth Fairy program they have going on.
Q: When should a parent first take their child to the dentist?
Either before a child turns one, or within a few months of the child’s first tooth coming in.
Q: When choosing a dentist that’s right for them, what should a parent consider?
A: A dentist who puts a parent at ease can be a good sign; but your dentist should be able to discuss with you the many ways they try to take the pressure off of your child. Whether they discuss with you their approach or they walk you through the amenities they have on hand for littles (e.g. streaming TV, headphones to block out drill sounds, etc.), if you as a parent feel comfortable you’ll be in a better state of mind to help your little be calm. But additionally, your dentist should understand that children might have lots of questions, that they may not know how to articulate their anxieties, and work toward answering calmly while also touching base with the child consistently to keep them apprised. They’re naturally curious, so a good dentist will reward that with answers that inform them and draw them closer into habits for a lifetime of good dental health.
Q: How can parents deal with the anxiety of going to the dentist?
A: There are a lot of ways to combat anxiety; but the best way is to model healthy oral hygiene every day for your children. They will see from you that taking care of our teeth is easy and can be fun. There are also some fun things you can integrate into the routine; at Floss we have several interesting flavors of floss that can be exciting for little ones. There are a number of colorful, engaging toothbrushes on the market.
Q: What are a few easy tips for helping our kids form good dental health habits?
A: You can always make it a game or incorporate a reward system. You can incorporate tools that are colorful or that align with their favorite movie or tv characters, etc. if you add playing a song while brushing into their routine, they’ll get used to understanding they need to brush for the proper length of time.
Q: Are there any misperceptions about dental care that we should know?
A: Just the misconception that dentistry is scary. If children start from a young age and are able to have positive experiences, this can negate the idea of the dentist being scary from the start. Prevention is always better than repair. Establishing good oral habits to prevent the need for fillings will also make the dentist feel less scary or stressful.
Q: Can you tell us more about the Floss Tooth Fairy?
A: The Floss Tooth Fairy is just another tool we wanted to use to put our customers at ease. The message shares a cute poem before children have the chance to ask their own questions about their teeth or the world of the Floss Tooth Fairy. Sometimes the child might even get a message back from the Floss Tooth Fairy, but she’s pretty busy, so it depends on how many loose teeth she has to pick up.