Child Tooth Care Tips in Lockdown
Everybody has had their routines turned upside down in the last three months, and now we are getting back to work we are hearing more about the problems that this has caused. Here are a few ideas for how to help avoid problems during this unusual time.
We have had some spectacular weather, and there are very few ice creams available for sale in Tesco or Aldi! This can only mean we are all buying them up and eating them. They contain huge amounts of sugar and are rarely eaten as a treat after a meal, but are eaten between meals as a cooling snack, increasing the frequency of "sugar hits" during the day. As much as possible keep them at mealtimes, reduce the frequency and even swap out the sugary "mini-magnums" for some homemade sugar free (or reduced sugar) treats (recipe).
A long lie in, or a late night every once in a while during this extended break from school is understandable, but it often means that the morning or evening tooth brushing gets skipped. There is no rule that says the teeth must be brushed at bed time. After your evening meal, when you know your child will not be eating or drinking anything else before bed wait 30 minutes and then brush them. It doesn't matter if you then sit down to watch a movie and they fall asleep. Make it part of the evening routine, not the bed time routine.
Even if we can persuade our children to brush, they are only brushing them for 30 seconds at a time, a fraction of the time needed to do a good job. We need a thorough brush that includes each tooth. We do not want to skip any teeth, they are all important and being yellow and covered in plaque and food makes them sad! If it helps to make life more interesting just find an age appropriate song on Spotify that will do the job. For young kids, you can run through baby shark all the way through in two muinutes, and you don't even need the tune on Spotify, because everyone will know it. Beware this often results in more splatter of toothpaste on the mirror and all round the sink. A homemade toothbrush chart that once filled in all week unlocks a treat (not a sugary snack type of treat, but maybe a comic or something similar).