By Cortney Downs, Kentucky Youth Advocates intern

On Halloween, kids everywhere excitedly dressed up as their favorite cartoon characters before going trick-or-treating and devouring tons of candy and other sugary treats. For many kids, it’s a day they look forward to all year long! But with sugary treats comes the increased risk of cavities and tooth decay, the single most common childhood disease in the United States. As a result, November 1st has been designated National Brush Day as a reminder for parents (and kids) about the importance of oral health and healthy oral health habits, such as brushing.

The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends brushing your teeth for two minutes twice a day for optimal oral health. There are hashtags, #2mins2x and #NationalBrushDay, to use when sharing your brushing selfies on social media. Parents and kids can also check out the website for flossing and brushing videos, tips, and other helpful resources that are available in English and Spanish.

And if that wasn’t enough, the ADA also created 5 easy teeth to-dos that are simple enough for anyone to use and an easy way to keep kids’ smiling bright!

  • Help kids place the brush at a 45-degree angle against their gums
  • Gently move the brush back and forth in short strokes
  • Brush the front, back and the top of the teeth
  • Tilt the brush vertically and make several up-and-down strokes to clean the inside surfaces of the front teeth
  • Teach them to brush their tongue to remove bacteria and freshen breath

Let’s help kids establish healthy brushing habits, not just on National Brush Day, but all year round!