Reducing a child’s risks of dental injuries and emergencies is as vital to his or her overall dental health as proper dental care such as brushing and flossing. By taking simple precautions, parents can help their children avoid the most common dental injuries.
As parents, we play an important role in our kids’ overall dental wellness. We help them keep their teeth and gums healthy through regular brushing and flossing. We also promote good eating habits to prevent harmful plaque and bacteria that cause cavity and tooth decay.
But do you know that there are also practical ways that we can do to help our children avoid dental injuries in their daily activities. Here are some of those practical ways:
1. Learning to walk is one milestone that most parents look forward too in their children’s growth and development. However, small kids who are still learning to walk fall and trip a lot of times. Hence, always be on the lookout when your child is trying to walk. Follow and guide them, and see where they are going. If it happens that they hurt themselves when they fall, check for any loose, chipped, or missing tooth. If there is one, bring your child to his or her pediatric dentist soon after to make sure that it is treated properly.
2. Babies and little tots will chew on almost anything, food and non-food alike. Be on guard and keep your child away from any hard object that your child may munch that could potentially crack his or her teeth. If they are teething, you can utilize soft silicone teethers or even pacifiers.
3. Kids are generally active and playful. Giving simple reminders whenever they play around the house, in the backyard, or at the playground. Be mindful also of your child’s action and direction to prevent any injury, whether it be a scratch, a bruise, or a chipped tooth.
4. Usually, parents make their kids taste all kinds of food. But in doing so, avoid giving them hard foods and candies. This is to help protect your child’s teeth from injury while eating. Make sure to not let them bite hard candies and ice too.
5. This one is non-negotiable but still pays to be reminded about. Before driving in the car, make sure that your child is protected by the use of an infant or child car seat. If your child is older, adjust accordingly your child’s seat belts to make sure they are snugly fit on your child for safety and protection.
6. Help protect your child’s teeth from injury and trauma while playing sports. You may ask your pediatric dentists about mouthguards. The use of mouthguards helps protect your child’s teeth, gums, and jaws from any possible dental injuries. It will act as a shock absorber and cushion to avoid severe injuries and potentially harming your child. Encourage your child to always wear it, just like wearing a helmet and knee pads when biking.
7. Be a good example, do not use your teeth as scissors to cut tape and threads, among others. Remember, your kids watch you and your actions. When it’s their turn to open a bag of chips, you don’t want them biting on the bag, right? Doing so may cause a chipped tooth or injury to both teeth and gums.
Accidents can happen anywhere, anytime. However, knowing how to prevent a dental injury can also make a difference between keeping and losing your child’s pearly whites.
Dental Safety and Emergencies, Canadian Dental Association https://www.cda-adc.ca/en/oral_health/talk/complications/emergencies/
Concerns, MouthHealthy.org by American Dental Association https://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/babies-and-kids/concerns
Sports Safety: Avoiding Tooth and Mouth Injuries, Colgate https://www.colgate.com/en-us/oral-health/conditions/dental-emergencies-and-sports-safety/sports-safety-avoiding-toothand-mouth-injuries