Healthy Teeth: Always on Duty for Your Child
Most parents know that teeth help a child bite, tear and chew food. But they do much, much more. Indeed, because they do so much, it is absolutely vital to keep your child’s teeth in good shape. While your child’s primary teeth fall out at around age 6, maintaining the health of these baby teeth is vital because they serve as placeholders for the permanent teeth that follow. Here are three of the less-well-known benefits of healthy teeth:
- Articulation and speech—Adults may take them for granted, but healthy teeth are especially important as children learn to speak. In fact, having teeth is essential for your child to pronounce many different sounds and speak the English language correctly. For instance, try saying the words “tooth” and “floss” without touching your tongue to your teeth. You can’t do either, can you? Well, neither can your child, and while it may sound cute when a toddler mispronounces words, it can be a hindrance in school or social situations.
- Facial expressions—Teeth provide structural support for your child’s face muscles and help them to form facial expressions that communicate to others what they are thinking. Without a mouth and its supporting teeth, a child would not be able to display emotions through facial expressions. The teeth also play an important role in facial fullness and esthetically pleasant facial shapes. Thus, absence of teeth, for any reason, not only hampers your child’s ability to chew but also impacts the facial features to great extent, affecting your child physiologically, emotionally and socially.
- Attractiveness—A six- or seven-year-old child with missing teeth might look adorable for a while, but their permanent teeth will soon fill the gaps. It is very important to protect the health of these permanent teeth, for your child will have them for a long time to come. A healthy smile full of bright, shining teeth is not only attractive but can engage other children and draw them toward your child. And the healthier those teeth, the happier your child looks.
So, teeth are a lot more versatile than you thought, aren’t they? That’s why it is so incredibly important to teach your children to take good care of them.
You can do this by instructing, helping and reminding your child to brush with a fluoride toothpaste twice a day and floss at least once a day to keep their teeth healthy. Your child can also brush his or her tongue to help keep breath fresh. Furthermore, making sure that your child eats lots of fresh vegetables, fruits instead of sugary snacks and drinks water instead of soda or sugar-laden juices will prevent the creation of plaque, a substance on the tooth surface just waiting for sugar to arrive so decay can begin. Finally, scheduling regular visits with Dr. Jared to both examine and clean your child’s teeth is equally essential. When properly cared for, a set of healthy teeth will be your childen’s useful friends for the rest of their lives.
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