Tips to maintain children’s good oral health and protect them from oral injury during active summer months
The Connecticut State Dental Association (CSDA) reminds parents to help their children practice good oral health this summer.
“When children are home from school, playing with their friends and out of their regular routines, it’s easy to forget about taking proper care of oral health,” said Dr. Gary Linker, CSDA President. “However, there are some things that parents can do to make sure their children have a healthy and safe summer.”
Parents can help children stay healthy and safe this summer by encouraging them to stay hydrated by drinking water and use the right safety gear when being active.
Staying hydrated is incredibly important during the hot summer months. “Water is the best drink – both nutritionally and for oral health,” said Dr. Linker. “Sports drinks hydrate you and taste good, but they also contain lots of sugar.”
Sugary drinks, like sports drinks, react with natural bacteria in the mouth to weaken tooth enamel. Weaker teeth can lead to cavities, and are more prone to injury.
Children are also prone to mouth and face injuries during the summer months as they are more active playing outside, participating in sports, and playing with their friends.
“One of the best ways to protect mouths and faces from injury is to wear a mouth guard,” explains Dr. Linker. Mouth guards are plastic shields worn in the mouth by athletes to protect teeth and gums. Mouth guards cushion blows to the face, reducing risk of broken teeth, and preventing injuries to the lips, tongue, face and jaw.
“The best mouth guards are the ones a dentist custom fits,” said Dr. Linker. “If a custom mouth guard is too expensive, you can buy a stock mouth guard at a pharmacy. Some protection for your mouth is better than none at all.”
“By taking these simple precautions, you can help ensure that your children will have bright, happy smiles when it’s time to head back to school in the fall,” said Dr. Linker.
About the Connecticut State Dental Association
The Connecticut State Dental Association (CSDA) has approximately 2,300 members. As the trusted leader and voice for oral health care in Connecticut, the CSDA has advocated for the public's health and promoted the art and science of dentistry since 1864. For more information about the CSDA, visit the Association's Web site at www.csda.com.