As we head into the second half of May, we hope everyone takes time to recognize and celebrate National Dental Care Month. This month-long celebration is a chance for oral health professionals, parents, teachers, advocates, and community members to build awareness about the importance of preventive dental care for individuals of all ages.
Key factors of maintaining good overall health throughout our childhood and adulthood include establishing positive oral hygiene habits and receiving routine dental care. Routine care allows for early detection of issues that display in the mouth and helps to prevent gum disease, cavities, and more severe health conditions. In addition to caring for your own oral health, teaching your children good oral hygiene habits early will set them up for a lifetime of healthy smiles.
This year, practicing preventive dental care at home has been at the forefront of oral health campaigns nationwide, given the closures and limited availability of dental offices for routine care. You can practice good oral hygiene and teach your kids about their oral health by:
- Brushing your teeth for 2 minutes, twice a day.
- Flossing your teeth once a day.
- Limiting sugary drinks and choosing fluoridated tap water.
- Visiting your dentist after the first baby tooth has erupted and annually for routine checkups, or contacting your dentist when offices reopen.