Poor oral hygiene in the UK has reached unprecedented levels and national statistics show that over a third of children suffer from tooth decay by the time they begin school.
World-renowned celebrity dentist, Dr Richard Marques offers some invaluable advice to ensure your children can benefit from optimum oral hygiene. Known as ‘the king of smiles,’ Dr. Richard Marques specialises in general dentistry, restorative dentistry, cosmetic dentistry / tooth whitening, teeth cleaning and gum health. Dr. Marques’ expertise and knowledge has made him one of the most respected and sought after dentists in the UK. This is Dr. Richard Marques’ advice:
1.Use A Fluoride Toothpaste
“As soon as the first milk tooth breaks through use a children’s toothpaste which is designed for young children’s teeth and should always contain at least 1000ppm fluoride.
Encourage your child to spit but not rinse as this allows the fluoride to soak into the teeth and remind your child to avoid eating or swallowing too much of the toothpaste.”
2. Refrain From Giving Sticky Sweets
“These contain lots of sugars which get stuck in the teeth and can cause them to decay."
3. Avoid Fizzy Drinks
“These contain carbonic acid and can contain sugars, which can cause erosion of the teeth due to loss of the enamel.”
4. Avoid Using Bottled Drinks/Sip Cups
“These can often cause drinks to pool around children’s front teeth for too long encouraging tooth decay.”
5. Frequent Visits To The Dentist
“It’s really important for children to become accustomed to going to the dentist from a young age.”
6. Help Your Child With Teeth Brushing
“The teeth should be brushed for two minutes and using a timer is a really great way to encourage this.”
7. Use Fissure Sealants
“These can be applied when your child’s permanent back teeth start to come through. This is where the chewing surfaces of the back teeth are covered with a special thin plastic coating to keep germs and food particles out of the grooves. The good thing about this is the sealant can last for 5-10 years plus!”
8. Offer Your Child Healthy Snacks
“Carrot sticks and cucumber are snacks I would recommend and cheese is also great. Dried fruit should be avoided because it contains lots of sugar.”
9. Buy Sugar-Free Medicines
“Medicines high in sugar content can damage your child’s the teeth.”
10. Avoid Thumb-sucking Or Dummies
“These can cause an open bite where teeth then move to make space for the thumb or dummy.”