First Things First – Oral Health Impacts Learning

| October 18, 2015

Dental decay is one of the leading causes of school absenteeism, and it can start to develop as soon as a child’s first tooth appears. The most common chronic disease among children in the United States, untreated tooth decay can cause pain and infections that may lead to other serious problems with eating, speaking, playing and learning. Halloween, with its focus on sugary treats, offers the chance to remind families about the importance of caring for their infant or toddlers’ teeth. Some good general guidelines include:

  1. Clean teeth every day. For infants, you can use a washcloth or infant tooth brush to clean gums at least once each day.
  2. Make sure your child sees a dentist by their first birthday or when their first tooth appears and regularly thereafter based on your dentist’s recommendation.
  3. Give children healthy snacks, such as fruits, vegetables and nuts, instead of candy.
  4. Limit sugary drinks, including fruit juice, and only allow milk or water in bottles.

READ MORE for additional recommendations from the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry.

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Category: General, Health

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