Summer is one of the best times of the year. Not only are spirits high but there are plenty of activities and treats to indulge in throughout the season. If you’re a parent, however, you should pay especially close attention to your child’s oral health.
Summer is a season of health but it’s also known for more than a few sweet treats. When you’re aware of the following common dental health issues, you’ll be prepared for anything summer has to throw at you. Here’s what you should watch out for over the next few months:
Summer is ripe with fresh fruits and vegetables, but no child can resist the cool temptation of ice cream. Cold treats are a summer staple with more than a few children pawing at their parents’ wallets whenever an ice cream truck rolls by. Paired with the sticky, sugary treats associated with fairs, festivals, and theme parks, your child will encounter hundreds — if not thousands — of sweet treats throughout the season.
These sweet, sticky treats are your mouth’s worst enemy, especially among children. If these sugars aren’t removed from your child’s mouth regularly, then they’re more likely to experience tartar buildup, cavities, or even tooth loss. After all, it’s common for kids to lack the fine motor skills necessary to brush their teeth properly. That’s why it’s vital you visit a pediatric dentist at least twice a year to check up on your child’s dental health. Try scheduling an appointment with a pediatric dentist before the school year starts to get them back to school on the right foot.
Those healthy fruits that were just mentioned can also create some deleterious health effects. Many summer citrus fruits are known for their high acid content. This acid can wear down the protective layer of enamel on your tooth, making them more sensitive with repeated exposure to acids.
While you shouldn’t prevent your child from indulging in healthy treats, you should encourage healthy habits along with them. Ensure your child drinks plenty of water with citrus fruits to dilute some of the acids. Try implementing reusable straws in the home to prevent acidic beverages from making contact with your child’s teeth, too.
There’s nothing better than a cup of ice cold water on a hot day. Unfortunately, children are tempted to chomp down on these hard ice crystals when they run out of water.
This can be detrimental for your child’s oral health. These hard minerals are difficult to break apart and can cause tooth damage over time. It’s not uncommon for children to chip a tooth on a particularly cold piece of ice, even if the drink has been resting on the table for a while. If your child simply can’t resist biting down on a refreshing ice cube, offer them a straw or reusable ice cubes.
Falls and accidents
Playing outside comes with its fair share of dangers as well. Trips and falls while running around the playground are a leading cause of chipped teeth among children, especially in the warm days of summer. This risk is heightened if your child partakes in potentially dangerous activities like roller skating, biking, or skateboarding. A simple fall is enough to result in a dental emergency. Just be sure to rely on a pediatric dentist with plenty of experience treating emergency cases.
Avoid falls and other accidents by providing the appropriate protective gear whenever your child goes out to play.
While the occasional accident is bound to happen in the summer, team sports almost guarantee an injury will happen. While this is incredibly common in high impact sports like football and wrestling, even seemingly innocuous sports can pose a threat to your child’s oral health. Luckily, mouthguards and helmets can help prevent thousands of dental health issues that occur because of high impact sports.
But contact sports aren’t the only threat to your child’s teeth. In fact, swimmers often face higher levels of tooth decay and tooth staining. This is because they spend many hours swimming in chemically treated pools. Particularly dedicated swimmers may even experience the dreaded “swimmers’ calculus” which is akin to tartar buildup on teeth because of frequent mineral exposure in the pool.
Summer doesn’t have to be devastating for your child’s oral health. With the help of an experienced pediatric dentist, your child can continue to thrive throughout the entire year. When you’re looking for a quality family dentist, rely on Smilez Pediatric Dental Group today.